In my office there has not been a pregnancy for nearly 4 years. I know this because the child of the last person to be pregnant is 3 1/2 now (“accidental” pregnancy). It has been a blessing not to have to face other pregnant women at work. In my department nearly everyone I work with is old enough to be my mother, and their children are grown. Or in the case of my boss, she had one and is done (though she is still relatively “young* enough” that she could have another if she wanted). There are young women in other departments but luckily (for me) none of them are in a position of becoming pregnant (not intentionally at least).

In the beginning of January we had a new assistant manager start at our office. He previously worked for the company in a different office but then went on paternal leave for 6 months when his wife went back to work 6 months after the birth of their child (the perks of parental leave in Canada, woop woop!). He is part-time in our office, and part-time in another so I don’t see him all that often. Last Wednesday he came into the office asking everyone “boy or girl?”. I didn’t know why he was asking, so I just said boy. After he had polled everyone, he announced that him and his wife had learned the gender of the baby they were expecting, and it was a girl. I didn’t even know they were having another baby, but I guess he had mentioned it previously as it seemed most people did know. I may have not been around and he didn’t go making a huge deal of it.

They are due in August but had done some additional genetic testing (I’d guess CVS) that also revealed the gender. So they’re not really that much farther along than I am. If he had announced it to the office already I would guess they are due in early August, or he’s just one of those people who tells everyone right away. Eye roll.

Even though I, too, am pregnant I was still a bit taken aback. It was unexpected, I guess because I don’t know him too well but also being that his first child is just over one, and he’s a man, he wasn’t really on my pregnancy radar. I still haven’t told my coworkers about my pregnancy, and I am happy just keeping quiet about it for now but my stomach protrudes a lot more now after meals, and I’m going to have to say something sooner rather than later. Even though I’m not quite ready yet, I felt a little like I got scooped by our assistant manager.

Part of the issue is, we had just found out the gender of our baby the night before, so I was still reeling with that information and here he is sharing the same news about his baby the next day. Infertility has definitely warped the way I see a lot of things now. But, that’s his news, I have mine, I’ll share it when the time is right and the two things really have nothing to do with each other.

The more important (but still not the be-all-end-all) is that we found out the gender of our baby! It is around 99% accurate so long as the blood sample was handled correctly (it was done at a licensed blood lab, so I’m thinking yes…). It didn’t test for anything but gender, it was not the comprehensive Harmony testing. I just really wanted to know the gender as soon as possible (besides doing PGD). I can’t really explain why, because either way I would still be just as happy that I am pregnant. We haven’t told the  grandparents-to-be yet, and we’re not doing any big gender reveal. I just needed to know.

I think because so little of this process has been in our control, we could at least control when we find out. I also hate surprises, so waiting until birth was never going to happen. I also think that because I have this fear that something is going to go wrong with this pregnancy, I wanted the gender so I could bond, and day-dream about a little boy or girl, not just gender neutrality. Plus, I am a planner, and my thought was  I could work on the nursery and baby items once I knew the gender but now I find myself standing still, for fear of getting ahead of myself.

I’ve always wanted a little girl, as does J. I don’t know what to do with little boys, though I know I’d figure it out given the opportunity. I’ve always just been a girly girl, but also independent and adventurous and I always hoped I’d have a little girl to share that with (again, could be done with either gender, it’s just my preference). I sent my blood work to the genetics centre on Feb. 11, and it takes seven business days to process and provide results. I was trying to be patient, figuring if they received it on Feb. 12 that day didn’t count, plus Feb. 16 was a stat holiday in Alberta and Ontario (where the lab is), and I wasn’t sure if they would send it on the seventh day, or after the seventh day. I waited until Feb. 24 to call and ask when I could expect results and when the receptionist checked my file she advised me that it had been sent (via email) on Feb. 21. I had her verify the email and resend it, and she asked me if I wanted the results over the phone. I told her, no, thank you. I would wait until I got home with my husband. It took all my willpower to hang up the phone without finding out.

I checked my email, and still didn’t see anything. I decided to check my junk mail, despite the fact that I had received other emails from the same company, and my filters are usually very good. I popped over to junk mail, and there sat two emails, one from Feb. 21, and one from Feb. 24. Again, sheer willpower to click away without opening it.

All day those two emails were just yearning to be read. I knew I couldn’t do it without J, though. It felt like the longest day, and when I finally got home J was just sitting calmly on the couch. I skipped down the hall screeching that I didn’t know how he could be so mellow! We went into the spare bedroom, to-be nursery and opened the email. It didn’t just say “boy”, or “girl” it explained that it tests for the presence of Y chromosomes, which would indicate a male fetus. And then the results….

Negative for the presence of Y chromosome DNA in the maternal plasma sample.

Our girl!!!

I read a lot faster than J so I knew almost immediately and just stared at him to wait for him to realise what it meant. We hugged, and freaked out, it made everything seem simultaneously more real, and more surreal. We’ve had a girl’s name picked out for a couple of years now, so for once I was able to attach it to a living being. Whenever I spoke about our future child (before we got pregnant) I would use our girls name, as though she was a real person that we were just waiting for. So when we found out we were getting our girl, I was able to use the name, and say that {she} was coming home. The name is staying between J and I until the birth, it is one thing we are not open to sharing.

I love knowing the gender, and I love knowing I’m carrying our little girl. But the best news of last week was the results of the nuchal translucency. After chasing my OB’s office for results (that got sent to the fertility clinic, but not my OB) the nurse called and told me everything looked normal. I know it’s not a guarantee for everything to be perfect, but it’s another milestone, and another hurdle crossed.

Though I’m ecstatic about our baby girl, I’m sure I’ll live to regret that wish when she’s a pouty toddler, a mouthy preteen, and a rebellious teenage. But for now, I’m still just happy we’re pregnant.

*I say she is still young enough to have another child yet we know youth is not a guarantee of fertility (me being case and point)