Friday, 4 March 2011

Being a Mum to a Boy.

This is Roman, my nearly 13 month old son, on the afternoon of his first birthday. 

Throughout my nine (and a bit) months of pregnancy we were totally unaware of the sex of our unborn child. Well, actually, we thought we had it licked. 

We were both convinced that we'd be welcoming in a little girl into our family.

I can't say that my pregnancy was a text book case because it was up and down and filled with many weird and wonderful stories that I won't get into on here (it's late and I would get emotional.)

I prepared in my mind for a little girl. I dreamed of the frocks, the Hello Kitty décor, the big dolls house for her first Christmas. I had at least the first 20 years of her life all mapped out for her.

When people would tell me I was having a boy I used to feel quite affronted.

The thing is, I think deep down I knew I was having a boy. 

A few weeks before I was married I had a dream about a boy. We had already picked out our baby names (freaks, I know) so in the dream the boy was called Roman. He was in B's arms, but he was a toddler. He was also blonde haired and blue eyed - of which I am not, but B is so it's not a total revelation. I was holding a girl - not a newborn but not a toddler either - and we were in some park. It looked like a really cheesy scene and I remember in my dream mind I was happy but ready for the sick bucket, too.

But I just put this all down to dreaming. 

Dreams didn't mean anything

And from the start of the pregnancy it just felt like we were having a girl. 

As I lay labouring in my delivery suite of the hospital and my midwife had a gloved hand in my cervix (all the glitz and glamour of childbirth) she kept telling me she had a "feeling" that I was having a boy. Months later my Mum said this was probably because there was meconium (baby poop) in my amniotic fluid (the thing they call "waters") and a high proportion of little boys 'go' when they are distressed in the womb, apparently.

And yes he was distressed in the womb. It was quite a sad moment when it hit home he was distressed and his heart rate was dropping inside of me; but funnily enough I didn't feel the powerlessness that some women report about. 

So when he came fresh from his nine month home inside my body and B announced the sex I couldn't believe it.

I'd been thinking to myself in the labour; "what if it's a boy and not a girl?" it kept worrying me. All this time I had been preparing for a girl so I wasn't ready for a boy to appear. And I really thought it would be lovely to have a girl.

However, when I heard he was a boy everything made sense. Eliza melted away into the future and Roman was here, present with us.

I didn't find having a boy a challenge. 

Did it freak me out to change a nappy of a boy? No. 

This is something I hear a lot of new parents to boys say. Usually it's said when the parents have had a girl or two. The norm for them up until that point has been little girls. And suddenly they're landed with the challenge of pee spraying upwards - although, didn't find that an issue either.

I remember the first time I changed his nappy and I can say that I didn't once think; "Oh no, he's going to pee in my mouth!" Babies aren't constant running taps. They are not constantly peeing, despite what people might have you think.

So what of other stereotypes?

Well I haven't purposely bought him toys that I would consider "boys toys." I don't go for that. My brother loved playing with dolls when I grew up and I loved playing with cars. I don't believe that "boys will be boys."

Boys - and girls - will be whatever we shape them to be.

Don't miss out!
Leave me a great comment.
When you comment I'll even give you a shot of my air guitar!