My husband and I are not finding out the sex of baby #2. We waited with our first child and felt that it made the experience exciting and special.
I am not going to try to convince anyone that you should wait…I think it is a personal decision and from what I’ve experienced, most females feel very strongly about it – one way or the other.
But I wanted to write this post to explain why we decided to wait – why it was the right decision – for us.
Waiting to find out the sex of the baby was all I knew growing up. I remember my 2 sisters and I having a contest to guess whether our youngest sibling was going to be a boy or girl, how long, how much he/she would weigh…Waiting to find out was fun and exciting. Not to mention that all the movies I had seen that had the birth of a baby showed the husband coming out of the L&D room yelling, “It’s a…” and the extended family screaming and yelling. I never pictured my husband coming out of the room saying anything but that.
My mom’s side of the family believed that you didn’t celebrate or prepare anything for the baby until after the baby is born – that it was bad luck to have a nursery put together or clothes hanging in the closet. Through the years, it’s adapted a bit – my older sister had a crib in her house but waited until after her daughter was born to put it together while my son’s crib was delivered and put together before he was born (but much to my mom’s relief, we didn’t actually put the mattress in the crib until he was born). Additionally, in my mom’s family, females never had a shower. Gifts and necessary items would be given/purchased after the baby was born. This has also changed in recent years (my sister and I were both given showers) – but the need to have the baby’s room (“nursery”) all set up, painted, decorated, etc is a new concept to me. Therefore, not knowing the sex of the baby really doesn’t change much in terms of preparation for me.
I am constantly asked how I am able to wait and not have anything prepared for my son/daughter’s arrival. In my opinion, not much needs to be set up initially. My son slept in our bedroom (in the co-sleeper) until he was 3 months old. He napped in my arms, in the swing, in the vibrating chair, on the couch, in the co-sleeper, on our bed – basically everyplace except his crib!! So we rarely used his room for the first few weeks after his birth. The changing table and dresser were used daily – but those were unisex. My husband and I had a boy and girl option picked out for many things (we didn’t want the room to be unisex): the name, bedding, color, and decorations in bedroom. During the first few days at home with my son, I was able to order everything I needed to – newborn babies sleep for hours at a time and I find that I had more than enough free time to do what I needed to. And within a few weeks, his room was a boy’s room!
Since I didn’t know the sex of my baby for my shower, whatever clothes (they were minimal) I did receive were unisex. I had (and have) no problem with my son or daughter wearing whites, greens, and yellows in the first few weeks of his/her life – where am I going with my newborn baby anyway? However, I will confess that my mom, dad, in-laws, sisters, and cousins arrived at the hospital hours after my son was born (or shipped a package immediately if they were on the other side of the US!) with a full wardrobe to get him through the first 3-6 months of his life. So he had a blue outfit to wear home and to wear for every day after that for the next few months – if I chose to dress him in blue (or green). It’s a tradition in my family – they happily provide the new baby with a beautiful wardrobe. I’m blessed that my family lives so close – it definitely would have been a bit more difficult if I didn’t have them around to help with the clothes shopping!
But, despite all of that, the biggest reason I wanted to wait was because I felt like this was the one thing in my life that I should not obsess about. My husband jokingly tells me I am Type Z – that I am so much worse than Type A that I have gone backwards into the alphabet. I analyze, obsess, plan, and organize to the 100th degree with EVERY aspect of my life. I have lists, charts, schedules for everything. Literally. But this was one of the few things in my life that I was happy to throw my hands up in the air and acknowledge that I would have no control. It was actually very liberating to wait.
How do you feel? Did you or do you plan to wait? Or did you / are you going to find out the first chance you get??