November 19, 2012
I had chosen to have CVS testing at 11 weeks to determine whether the fetus had any chromosomal abnormalities. Since the test results analyze all 46 chromosomes, the genetic counselor asked if I wanted to know my baby's gender.
There are varying opinions about finding out the gender before giving birth. I’m of the mindset that I’d like to know as much as I can as soon as possible. I also have never been one for surprises, let alone big surprises! I told the counselor that I wanted to know the gender, provided that the fetus didn't test positive for Down’s syndrome or another chromosomal abnormality.
Several friends had asked me if I thought I knew the gender. I guessed that it was a boy because of the old wives’ tales that women who don’t have morning sickness and crave more salt than sugar are having boys.
The genetic counselor indicated that she would call me with the results on Monday, November 19th in the late afternoon.
On Monday at 3:30pm, my cell phone vibrated, while I was driving home. I recognized the Georgetown extension and pulled over into a parking lot so I could safely answer the phone.
“Hi Stef,” the counselor said. “I’m calling with some good news.”
“Really?” I responded hopefully, but with a touch of nervousness.
“The initial results came back, and there are no abnormalities. The results are 99.96% accurate. It will take another week to get the full 100% results, but you can breathe easy now.”
Tears filled my eyes as I exclaimed, “That’s great news!”
The counselor then asked, “Do you still want to know the gender?”
“It’s a girl.”
“Would you mind saying that again?” I inquired as tears streamed down my cheeks.
“It’s a girl.”
I began to cry so hard that I was shaking in my car.
“Wow. This is real now. Really real. Thank you,” I said before we discussed the next steps.
When I hung up the phone a few minutes later, I sat in my car with a huge smile on my face as I continued to sob.
I had always imagined that I would adopt a little girl. In August 2010, shortly before I headed into my first surgery to remove my tumor, one of my best friends recommended that I picture my dog for peace and motivation. As I was going under, my subconscious didn’t just visualize Flake. I also pictured a little girl. I couldn’t see her face, but I could see her short ponytail, white cardigan and pink dress.
I had thought I knew how this little girl would come into my life, but God had a different plan. I spent the rest of the night with a huge smile on my face and tears in my eyes as I counted my blessings.
Did knowing the gender make me more sentimental about my pregnancy? How did I feel about other people’s excitement about my news?
To be continued…
PS What are your thoughts about finding out the gender?