Sunday, September 27, 2020

Mooncake Gender Reveal

I’m 22 weeks pregnant today!  We had the pleasure of throwing an ignition-free, socially distant gender reveal with our families over the past weekend.  With the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival coming up this week, there couldn’t have been a more fitting way to announce our baby's gender than with mooncake, which we baked ourselves with discreetly dyed filling. 

Going into having this party, I was still fearful of the possibility of this reality crumbling before my eyes.  How horrible would it be to have to announce to everyone that we lost this one too, after celebrating.  It shouldn't feel this way, but it does feel like I'd be letting expecting grandparents, aunties, and uncles down.  It was bad enough when it was only Wes who knew.  But, I'm realizing that the longer I hold this in, the more I am letting that anxiety rule my world.  Wes reminds me that all of the evidence has been in favor of this baby being alive and well.  We saw the heart beating on the ultrasound multiple times already, measurements have come back normal, we're seeing my belly grow, and I'm still slightly gagging at the thought of sautéed vegetables and poultry.  We have more reason to expect than to doubt.

The waiting will continue for just under 20 more weeks, and though we’ve been doing our best to protect all three of us and stay safe, we know that nothing is for sure.  What we've learned from the other losses is that so much is really beyond our control.  Living through these pandemic days may look uneventful, but I am constantly on edge that anything can happen.  Not just to our growing baby, but out there in our ecosystem, in our social system, in our economic system, in the world that this kid may be born into.  I've been more focused than ever on the news and anything revolving around social justice, and though I am disappointed, having the awareness is inspiring me, too.  Despite everything, our hopes are high.  I’m still learning, and I’m not afraid to face the ugly truths all around me and within me.  I’m still excited to welcome a new life into this crazy place.  These systems need love, tweaking, and rethinking.  If anything, there is no better time to raise a new generation to get that job done.

So, with a big breath of positivity and courage (just like when I shared about the miscarriages), I share this great news to lift a burden from my shoulders.  I dare to smile and put on a dress that shows my bump.  I want to bask in what happy moments this pregnancy can offer now and not deprive myself of what this special, yet brief time can offer us and our loved ones.  I knew that it would feel more real when we planned this party, made announcements, and started buying items... and that's all frightening, but it's also really fun.  Yes, I have PTSD, but I can let that go slowly and let the joy in.  I think that I finally reached that turning point at our 18-week doctor's appointment where we found out the gender of our baby.  There was something so tangible and real about everything since that day.  Soon after, I started to visibly expand in my belly!  It's beautiful, unpredictable, and it's life.  And yes, that's pink fillingit's a girl!