"Do not go where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."

Sunday, January 02, 2011

My Girl

 Tegan's New Year's Day Dora viewing party

I have a confession to make.  I've never had a professional manicure.  I've never been to a spa.  I can count on one hand the number of times I've paid for a haircut.  I'm not into purses, know nothing about makeup, and I haven't seen my hairdryer in a decade.  My standard-issue wardrobe consists of jeans and t shirts. In short, I'm not exactly what you'd call a "girlie" girl.

I was never the one who dreamt about having a little girl of her own, never the one who felt like she wouldn't be complete unless she was able to be a mother to a daughter.  I loved having three boys (I still do!)  and when we were blessed enough to become pregnant with Tegan, it was with no expectations other than to have another beautiful child.

I dreaded the comments.  Dreaded them.  Not so much the comments that were made to me alone, because I'm a big girl, but the comments that were made right in front of the boys.  "Trying one last time for a girl?"  "Hopefully you'll finally get a girl."  "I bet you're hoping for a girl."  How hurtful that must have been for the boys!

I needed a placard to hang around my neck:

Yes, we're having another baby after 3 boys.  No, we are not disappointed that we had only boys.  No, we were not "trying for a girl."   Yes, we will be JUST AS HAPPY if our fourth child is a girl or a boy.

We still get the unsolicited commentary when people realize that we had a girl after 3 boys, and it still bothers me.  I freely admit that I'm more sensitive about it than I should be, but (a second confession, if I may) letting go of hurtful - and repeated - comments from family members has never been my strong suit.  

And here's the thing:  I am so glad that the decision was not up to me.  I think about it sometimes, and I realize that we could have very easily called our family complete with the three boys, so content we were the children we'd already been blessed with.  I am so thankful that God placed it strongly (so, so strongly) on my heart to have another.  And I think it's ironic - and wonderful!! - that this tomboy was given not just a girl, but a GIRL'S girl.... a girl who loves pink, and sparkles, and nail polish, and princesses.  A girl who's filled my house with dolls and dresses, crowns and castles.  And so help me, I love it.

Being a mother to the boys came very naturally to me, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that mothering a girl, while being completely new to me, came just as naturally.   Legos, nerf guns, bow and arrows, tea sets, princesses, Dora parties.  I'm there.

And when she's ready for her first real manicure, I'll be there too.


Alice said...

Can I ever relate on the comments! And it will only get worse the bigger I get. This past year I came up with the perfect response to "Wow, 3 boys?" because I would smile happily and shut them up with "Yes, we're really lucky, aren't we?" Nothing they could do but agree. Being pregnant again adds a whole new (unpleasant) dimension for comments. We weren't trying for a girl, we won't be disappointed either way, we just felt like someone was missing from our family. I don't know who it is yet, but I know he or she is the perfect addition. :)

Annie's Antics :-) said...

I think it'd be funny if you said something like, "Yea, she's lucky she's a girl - we were gonna sell her on the black market had she been a boy. How much you think we coulda gotten?" :P


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