It wasn’t long after my wife found out she was pregnant with Bub that I set out on the campaign trail. Most parents are probably independents; I on the other hand was a registered boy-atarian. So I got busy glad-handing at fundraisers, gave speeches to anyone who would listen and plastered Let’s Hear if for a Boy! posters all over town.
In my defense, I grew up in a house where the men outnumbered my poor mother 3-1. I also happen to be a male, so having an X-Y cohort just made more sense to me. Seemed to be more in my comfort zone. Something I could readily relate to, something I know.
What I don’t know is women (just ask my wife). I think I speak for most men when I say the idea of raising a daughter is at least to some level utterly terrifying. Women are much more complex beings, and it is a universal truth that girls are simply harder to raise than boys. And some of us are, well, pretty lazy.
Anyway, I’ve softened my political baby views over the last 22 months, turned in my boy-atarian member card. I really have no preference on this child. I like the idea of Bub looking after his little sister. But I also like the idea of him beating on his little brother for no reason whatsoever. It’s such a toss-up.
It’s not that I don’t want a daughter. In fact, I saw a dad swinging his little girl at the playground the other day and I felt a tinge of something I could only identify as jealousy. Weird, right? Maybe I really do want a girl and am just too afraid to admit it.
We all think we can raise a strong, independent daughter who is comfortable in her own skin, eschews Barbie and doesn’t rely on male attention to validate her self-worth. Well, at least I think that. My wife thinks that, too. It’s a nice thought—it’s the follow-through part that gets tricky.
So we naturally started a friendly wager. We’re laying 1:1 odds and playing with house money, but still, somebody has to win. It’s all about bragging rights. I believe it IS a girl; my wife is calling boy. And not to brag, but I called the first one, which pretty much makes me undefeated.
As we wind into the 38th week now, we were just asking ourselves WHY didn’t we just go ahead and learn the sex? The first time, sure, go for the gusto. But now we want to know if we should donate Bub’s outgrown clothes or start bleaching them. My wife snapped her fingers. She could find out like that. Just say the word. One phone call. But I likened that to running 24 miles of a marathon and then taking a cab to the finish line. So we’re sticking to our stubborn guns. How many huge, life-altering surprises do you get like this, anyway?