Have you ever wondered what it would be like to find out your baby's sex in the delivery room instead of on an ultrasound screen? Many couples can't wait to find out whether they will have a boy or girl so they can begin decorating the baby's nursery in pink or blue, but here are six reasons to keep the gender a surprise and go team green!
The wait to find out my baby's sex has been exciting, but it also exercises my patience, as I am just dying to find out if Liana will have a baby brother or baby sister to tease (ahem.. I mean, "play with"). Personally, gender doesn't matter to me. I could buy all neutral colored items and me and my baby would be just as happy as buying everything in shades of pink or blue. Society will pave a different path for my little one in the future, but for now I'll proudly wave the "team green" flag.
1. Pure bond
The bond between my baby and I is that of pure love for the life I helped to create and for this period of coexistence. We don't know much about each other right now, but we're both dependent on each other, and helping each other to thrive. By not knowing whether my baby is a boy or girl, I am eliminating all expectations based on gender from our current bond. I am not bonding with my baby's sex, I am bonding with the life inside of me.
2. Relieving gender stereotypes before birth
Will my child be a famous athlete? A dancer? A lawyer? A nurse? An accountant? A social worker? A police officer? A computer technician? These are all equal possibilities, but by knowing whether my baby is a boy or girl, people will create subconscious expectations based on gender. We all do it, I am guilty as well. When I was pregnant with Liana, I imagined her wearing lots of bows and wondered if she would like playing with dolls or taking dance lessons. With our new little bundle, I imagine a different array of moments. The first swimming lesson, which sporting events or extracurricular programs I will attend, and the art pieces I will get to hang on my fridge following each Mother's Day. See the "team green" difference?
3. Functional gifts
By not knowing the baby's sex, you are more likely to receive gifts that you will actually use. There are many functional items than can be gifted without having gender in mind (diapers, baby toiletries, carrier, high chair, stroller, car seat, bottles, pacifiers, baby-proofing supplies, possibly nursery decor, and even some clothing!). Without even thinking about it, most people want to buy "cute" gifts, which usually involve the pink or blue categorization.
4. Inclusive planning
Many people think they have to know their baby's sex in order to decorate the nursery (which will undoubtedly include pink or blue as the base color), but what about an animal theme? A storybook theme? Or classic but neutral color schemes (gray or white can be paired with pretty much any color)? Liana's nursery was a Studio Ghibli theme and although we knew we were expecting a girl, it would have been perfect for either a boy or a girl. The same mentality goes for picking out your child's first toys or clothing. Their world will be crowded with pink or blue as soon as the word gets out, so why not provide them with other stimulating colors from the start?
5. Maintaining one surprise for BTDT parents
All pregnancies are different, and each has the possibility to surprise you when you least expect it. But as a "been there done that" (BDTD) mum who has only been through one pregnancy, I am still finding the whole process a bit "stale". I feel very prepared for the changes my body is going through and I know what to expect at each prenatal appointment. My baby's sex is the main aspect that is still a surprise (other than the birthing experience, because who really knows when that will be or what will happen!). To maintain the excitement of my tiny soon-to-be addition to the family, I am letting the "boy or girl?" question remain a mystery for now.
6. Endless possibilities
We are currently taking a time out with the baby naming game. I have written many little lists of [girl and boy] names that I like, but I know it is hard for Ashton to comment on them because he knows the baby's sex and doesn't want to ruin the surprise for me. However, I have been having a quite a bit of fun creating inclusive lists of names, since I don't have the limit of imagining our little one with a specific gender just yet. We could be having a little 'Marlow' or a tiny 'Charlotte'. In my mind, the possibilities are endless!
Maintaining the surprise until birth isn't for everyone. I honestly don't think I could have gone team green during my first pregnancy. I REALLY wanted a daughter, so I elected to find out whether we'd have a boy or girl as soon as I possible. But this time, I don't have as strong of a preference. I'd love for Liana to have a sister that she can share all of her secrets with. I'd also love to have the experience of mothering a son. I can't say for sure if I will definitely wait until delivery to find out, but as for family and friends, they'll have to wait until they visit in the hospital to see whether baby's first hat is pink or blue!