Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Pink surprise

Four years ago tonight, I was big as a cow, my bags were packed, my Christmas shopping was accomplished, the nursery was ready, the closet was full of wittle bitty blue clothes.

Because I was having a boy. I knew I was. I had known Shep was a boy from the get go. I had known Eva Rose was a girl from the get go. My self-gender-predicting-abilities were obviously some sort of sixth sense. Evidently God had gifted and talented me in this area, because hello, I was two for two, and those were unbeatable odds. So when I said that Baby 3 was a boy, then Baby 3 was a boy. Because I always knew the gender of my babies, from the get go.

And, come on. How could you walk around for nine months with another person inside of you and not even know what it was? Women who did that, well, I wouldn't say it out loud, but. They were less intuitive than I. Which made them less of a mother, truth be told.

But I did not want to know what this baby was, officially. I wanted it to be a surprise. Just like Shep was a surprise, except he wasn't, because I knew he was a boy. From the get go.

One might think that the very fact that I was humongously full of fetus even though precautions had been taken would be surprise enough for 2005, but I guess I hadn't gotten my fill.

Walker, however, had. He wanted to know. Fine, I said, satiate your need for gender identity, but keep it to yourself. So when we went into the ultrasound, the tech waited until I sprinted out of the room to relieve my exploding bladder before she told Walker what the test had revealed. As I peed I heard them laughing in the ultrasound room. I was proud of Walker for staying happy. He had wanted to see a hamburger, but I knew he had seen a turtle. He must be so disappointed. Aw, he was such a good sport.

First he only told our closest friends what the baby was. But then the more people asked, the more found out. As for me, one day he would tell me it was a girl, the next day a boy. I argued with him that it was a boy. He said it was a girl. I knew he was just saying that to be ornery, and also my husband is quite gifted in the art of lying. This went on for about twenty weeks.

By December 13, the only people on planet Earth who did not officially know the gender of Baby 3 were me and my mom.

Except I knew, of course, that it was a boy. A boy named Ingram. His little blue nighties were folded in his dresser, ready for him.

I had asked my friend Shelly to go to Lifeway and buy the baby book I had chosen, and then to wrap it, so that I could not see whether she bought the boy or the girl one. Even though I knew she was buying the blue book.

On the evening before I was to be induced to have my second son, the son named Ingram, whose little blue outfits were hanging in the closet, I took the wrapped book out of the Lifeway bag. The book must go to the hospital, to be opened upon his arrival, when his wittle bitty male feet would be stamped upon the page of the blue baby book. I spied the receipt in the bottom of the bag, and I picked it up so I could see how much I owed Shelly.

I read the receipt.

The receipt said:

BABY MEMORY BOOK - GIRL

I blinked, shook my head, and read it again. It still said:

BABY MEMORY BOOK - GIRL

I stared. For a minute.

"Walker! WALKER!! WAAAAALKER!!!!!!!!! COME HERE!!!!!!!"

"What?"

"This receipt! For the baby book! It says GIRL! Shelly bought me a baby book for a girl!"

"Yah. That's because you are having a girl."

"No, I'm not. I having a boy."

"Missy. I have been TELLING you it's a girl. You are going to the hospital tomorrow to give birth to a GIRL."

Pause.

"Nuh uh. You're lying."

"OH for the love of all things pure and holy! YOU'RE HAVING A GIRL."

"But I gave all my baby girl clothes to Lisa! At supper club! You put them in the trunk of her car!"

"No. We pretended that I put them in the trunk of her car. I have been driving around with two trash bags of baby girl clothes in the trunk of my car for two months now."

Pause.

"You're lying."

(Walker beats head against wall.)

"When I see you come in here with two trash bags of baby girl clothes, then, and only then, will I believe that I am having a girl tomorrow."

Walker walks outside. Walker comes back inside. Carrying two trash bags of baby girl clothes.

"Holy crap. I'm having a girl tomorrow."

"I TOLD YOU YOU WERE HAVING A GIRL."

"I can't believe I am having a girl. I'm having a girl! Oh my gosh! I have so much laundry to do!!"

Baby GIRL Magdalene Belle, 12-14-05
and possibly the most unattractive photo of Walker ever taken



From 12/13/09

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