So, our third little monkey is very much a boy – it was a rugged path to this revelation; I had different sickness in the beginning, but then it was different between the two boys too: from the well-known all day puking with Oli right to the occasional but uncontrollable nausea with Milan. This time around I had two bouts of very very bad morning sickness that was so serious that I literally couldn’t move. Being good work
horseforce, both of these were weekends, so nobody noticed anything, I was ‘fresh as a daisy’ by Monday. Ok ok, this is a bit of an overstatement, since I am always tired, mostly grumpy and often have cereal/chocolate/milk smudge on my clothes – but no change there. I thought that this and my protruding baby belly at a mere 10 weeks mark would mean that maybe baby number 3 was a girl…
At the 12 week scan we got a picture that indicated a girl too- based on the nub theory, but it was done early (before 12+4), with ‘plenty of time to rise’…aka nobody could tell me the sex, just an educated guess. So I tried my best to not to start believing it’s a girl and to keep an open mind. Even played with the idea to keep it a surprise, but I kept finding myself wandering onto websites selling cute girly baby outfits with headbows (I never liked that stuff, no idea what happened to me?!) and looking at pinky colourful reusable nappies, which were popping up on my Facebook from my history of looking into this when Milan was little (never really got the hang of it, he was a big baby anyway, plus these nappies made him look literally like a little sausage :D).
Then at the 20 week scan the sonographer sounded like she said girl first – we are still not sure what she was saying…but we spent a good 10 minutes convinced that it was a girl and she never corrected us, Dezsi had a tear in his eyes…then she said no, she thinks it’s a little boy. I asked her if she was sure, she said they never say they are sure…I posted this picture on a group where the admins are sonographers and they all said that the cord is between the baby’s legs and it is equally likely to be a girl to being a boy. So I thought I’d give it the benefit of the doubt, but started getting used to the idea of having three boys.
At 24 weeks we took part in the placenta imaging project as a healthy control and they did an MRI – here is was plain to see that he is very much a boy!
And why do I care in the first place? I still don’t quite know, never been one that would think that gender predicts life outcome in any way; in fact I was always pretty blind to the discrimination that was very much going on in Hungary as I was growing up. I come from an egalitarian family, where girls are not just pretty and boys are not the only ones that can achieve or be smart, all of us were encouraged to do the best we could both in school and in the swimming pool.
Sure, when they are young, you can dress up girls in pretty skirts and plait their hair, take them to ballet and buy them lots of princess stuff, but I doubt I would force any of these on my hypothetical little girl anyway, so what’s all the fuss for? Let’s look back at the history of finding out the sex with my two little boys:
I absolutely did not bother with him being a girl or a boy, just wanted to have a healthy baby, happy pregnancy and enjoy the very little time I had at home with him before I had to return to work. The shortness of the maternity leave hung above me like a dark shadow, so much so that all I cared about was to make the most out of the 16 weeks I had to watch him develop and grow (I still came back home in the afternoon of course, but to me it felt like I lost a piece of me when I was at work during the day). I also believed that personality had a lot to do with upbringing, so never even worried about him being agressive, or over-dominating in any way in the future – and he turned out to be incredibly warm-hearted, peaceful and the wittiest little person I know. Now I know that fundamentally this is genetics; Milan is a totally different character, despite having the same parents with the same values as Oli.
Up until he started reception, he couldn’t even tell whether someone was a girl or a boy, he would simply refer to everyone as ‘he’ and I would softly correct him to say ‘she’ when he was talking about one of his friends; many of whom are girls. His best friend to date is a little girl, Hanna, who has a matching personality – they play superbly together. However, there is quite a lot of social pressure at school, he started to say that certain things are for girls, and others are for boys, asked me why I went to work if I am a girl (?! – I nearly had a heart attack when I heard this!) and whether girls can also be superheroes…no comment on that. I need to educate myself to better support him in getting to know society and the pressures that come with being a member of it.
I felt that gender was such an unimportant issue, that I wanted to keep Milan’s sex a surprise until birth. However, he had other plans and at the 20 week scan he had his bum right where his head should have been, showing us in premier plane what toolkit he had 🙂 He was the sweetest and sleepiest little baby, he pretty much did not care where we were, how loud the background noise was, or whether we were moving or stayed put – he just slept and slept. Now I know that he was resting up to face the next phase of his development, he is a forever moving and endlessly curious little boy – completely his mother’s little boy! However, this comes with a lot more agression as what I got used to with Oli (none at all) and he doesn’t mind mess either; rather prefers it if he has a choice. Oli used to cry if his little bike went into a muddy puddle, Milan will head straight there and make sure that he gets as wet and muddy as it is physically possible given the size and depth of the puddle. Oli would never touch any food that is too wet, he even ate banana with a fork! (not trying to say that’s normal behaviour, but this is the way he is) but Milan will not get intimidated by having a yoghurt but no spoon; he is perfectly happy to dip his fingers and lick it off them – creating a mess almost too big and sticky to believe that it can all originate from just one small pot of yoghurt, plus he must have eaten some surely?! Oli never-ever assaulted anyone physically in his entire life, not even in self defence, and that miraculously includes his little brother. Milan on the other hand is quick to act if he doesn’t get what he wants, he hits, if he gets seriously agitated (and you don’t have to do a lot of bad things for this to happen, he is 2, everything agitates him) then he bites and he will not get intimidated by the presence of a respectable adult (i.e. me) or the difference in height and weight between him and his opponent (i.e. Dezsi…). We are still struggling on how to deal with this, as soon as he commits the ‘act’, he becomes a little fluffy sheep, comes for cuddles, gives out a million kisses and looks like he genuinely regrets it all. Oli will shout at him and growl like a dog, but most of the times he ends up simply using his speed advantage and runs away. I am sure that Milan will grow out of this, but all of his behavioural patterns are what we would associate with being a boy; clearly showing that personality largely down to genetics . However, the comparison between the two boys indicates that it is not simply the ‘Y’ that matters…
I am glad to say that now I got over the idea of ‘I’ll never have a little girl’ and started wondering instead on how it will feel to hold my third little one in my arms, what his personality will be like and how many times these three will melt my heart when they play all together, stand up for each other and love each other unconditionally – because they are MY BOYS:
Oli, the biggest, Milan, the middle! one and ‘D’, the little one