I’m not a fan of all these visits to the doctor. Every couple weeks I have to cross my fingers that the doctors aren’t going to find something wrong with the kid in my Love Interest’s womb. They scared the bejesus out of her when they called her up and told her I was a carrier for the cystic fibrosis disease. She was scared, I was angry.
“What do you mean they called you? That was my blood. Why didn’t they call me? What happened to doctor/patient confidentiality?”
It all turned out hunky dory when my Love Interest didn’t have the disease in her genetics. But if I didn’t trust what the doctors were up to before, I certainly had no faith in them now. They were undoubtedly gossips, but the doctors are our high priests. We go to them and they tell us our future. Each time I find religion as they go over charts and sonograms. Please God, I pray, let the kid have ten fingers and ten toes. I’ll he happy with nine fingers, even. Just give the kid ten toes.
This visit was different. We were almost 19 weeks into this adventure and so they should be able to tell whether we were having a boy or a girl. I didn’t want to know. I wanted the surprise to come when the surprise came. My Love Interest wins out in these matters. She thought she’d have more of a connection with the kid in her if she knew if it was a boy or a girl. She also thought if I knew maybe I would stop referring to it as the kid.
So after they put the blue colgate toothpaste on her and placed the wand on her belly an image came on the screen. There was the head. It seemed to be the right size. And there was the heart beat, beating nice and strong. There were the lungs and the bladder. And there were the arms. The technician asked, “Do you want to know the sex?”
“You can leave the room.” My Love Interest said.
She is a master of discretion, but there was no way she could keep that secret for another five months. “Tell us” I said. The technician looked real carefully.
At the dawn of the pregnancy my first thought was a girl. But a week earlier I had a dream where we had a boy. If I was a true believer in signs and portents though I should have paid attention in the waiting room. We have names picked for each sex. They are not very common names and so when the woman who went in immediately before us had the name reserved for our daughter, shouldn’t we have known before the technician that we were having a girl?
“You wanted a boy.” My Love Interest said.
“Come on,” I told her, “sons end up disappointing their parents. With daughters, parents get to be the ones who do the disappointing.”
“You wanted a son to watch Heat games with and pass on your comic book collection.”
“I thought you were a feminist. I can teach a girl how to arc her jump shot and to appreciate the Fantastic Four.”
We looked over the sonograms. They were kind of blurry, but I was sure the kid would get her mother’s good looks and not be saddled with her Dad’s excessive body hair, but of the nine print outs, one made me the happiest. It was the last one. It was of her feet and there were ten, count them, ten little toes.