I'm a mother of three boys. But don't feel sorry for me. I certainly don't.
I often jokingly say, after announcing that I have three sons, "You can start the sympathy now." But that's just it. I'm, like, joking. Honest!
I love having 3 boys. Although, I have to say that even though I always imagined having three kids from very early on, if you'd told me waaaay back then that I'd be a mother of three boys someday, I probably wouldn't have believed it. I'm not sure why that is. I never had a desire for a certain mix of kids. 3 boys or 3 girls, 2 boys, 1 girl or 2 girls, 1 boy. I just assumed I'd have a mix.
I did wonder, when expecting my second child, if I would feel disappointed at all if I had another boy. I didn't think so, but as I hadn't been in that position before, I thought it remotely possible. However, when the 6yr old was born, I didn't even think about it (I was too focused on his orange hair)! It wasn't until a couple of hours later, lying there watching with awe as my new baby slept soundly, that a couple of things came to me: a) that now having two sons, I could go to town doing up the 8yr old's bedroom (then 2) as a real boy's room - as they would eventually share it someday; and b) that it hadn't even vaguely registered with me to feel any sort of disappointment at having a second son.
When pregnant with my third child, I wondered again if I'd wish for a girl if another boy came along? Once again, I had no issues whatsoever about having another boy, but admittedly, Hubby and I had become quite convinced during that pregnancy that we'd have a girl. Probably because so many people thought we would, and after dreaming whilst pregnant with both boys that I would have sons, and then dreaming about having a girl with my third pregnancy, I figured perhaps this time we'd welcome a daughter.
So, when the doctor held the 3 yr old up to me straight after his birth, his bits and bobs right in front of my eyes, I was truly pleasantly surprised. As was Hubby. In fact, I think it made the surprise of his arrival all the more sweeter, not expecting him. And once again....nup. No concern over not having a girl. At all.
But that doesn't stop others assuming that I must yearn for a girl, or that I'm not happy having all sons, or that if I was to have another baby I would surely wish for a girl? (And I've been asked more than once if I'll "go again" to "see if you get a girl?")
Whilst I understand that some do yearn for a certain sex child - and there's nothing wrong with that - that's just not me. And in fact, I find it sad when I witness disappointment from parents when they get a boy, rather than the wished-for girl, or vice versa.
In hospital with my first son, I attended a settling class during my hospital stay. As we went around the room, telling everyone how many children we have, etc, a mother who sat cradling her newborn son took her turn. She said, "I have two boys already. This is my third son. You know, I thought I was going to have a girl. I was convinced of it, but then he came along." There was no joy on her face. Nothing. I felt both for her, and her baby. I'm sure that those feelings of disappointment didn't stay with her for long, and eventually, she could see how fortunate she was to have a healthy baby in her arms. At least, I hope so!
I also knew a woman whose husband was disappointed after the birth of their second daughter. So much so, he wanted his wife to consider an IVF treatment where only a certain sex fertilised egg is implanted, so he could fulfill his long waited desire to have a son. She was, not surprisingly, not keen on this idea. It seems they didn't follow through - a third daughter was eventually born. It was thought, during that pregnancy, that their daughter may not survive. However, she was born safely and has since blossomed. I wonder if knowing that his child was so close to death put things in to perspective for him?
There are so many people who would give anything just to have a baby - and a healthy one at that - let alone worry about whether it's a boy or a girl.
I'm not saying it's wrong to wish for a boy or a girl - or even to try the old wives' tales to try and get a certain sex child (as I know some who have done so). Why not? Go for it. That can't harm anyone. Just, don't assume that we all want the "perfect" family of one of each, or that a mother yearns for a daughter or that a father yearns for a son. It's not always the case.
I read an interview once, many years ago, with an AFL star's wife. I can't remember who it was unfortunately. Anyway, she had three boys too, and talking in the interview about the fact that people asked her all the time if she'd wish she'd had a girl, she said something along the lines of, "Whilst a girl would be nice, I'm very, very happy with my boys, and I feel blessed to have three happy and healthy sons. Besides, which one would I swap for a girl? I couldn't choose, and nor would I want to."
My thoughts exactly.