Special Guest Blogger: Sugar and Spice?
Sugar and Spice and… ?!
By Erin Schneider
During my pregnancy, an astute colleague told me, “Some women could be girl moms or boy moms. You’re definitely a girl mom.” And so it is!
The day I found out I was having a girl – February 24, 2010 – was better than Christmas, Thanksgiving and my birthday rolled into one. And every day since I have been walking on air. Of course, the day her genetic test results indicated she was most likely healthy also felt nothing short of miraculous.
My 14-year-old stepson, Max, was less than thrilled when the ultrasound tech announced he was going to have a little sister. He went back to reading Road and Track, his dreams of teaching a little tyke to play lacrosse shattered.
Of course I would have loved a “him” just as much as I do her, but I would have wanted to try again for a girl. In my heart of hearts, I felt my life would not be complete without a daughter.
Let me back up a step. I had always wanted a boy and a girl. I already had a wonderful stepson. A daughter would balance our family. I confess – I’m weary of Chargers games and airsoft guns. I’m looking forward to fairy tales about unicorns and ballet lessons. And to having a relationship that’s as strong as mine and my mother’s.
Sweet Audrey Carol is just as beautiful as I thought she would be. She makes my heart swell with her delicate eyelashes and button nose. However, this sweet flower is far from a shrinking violet. Her demure exterior belies an inner strength.
Audrey was born six weeks early and came out howling. She was an impressive 5 lbs. 8 oz. Her NICU nurse called her an “overachiever.” She took her bottles so well that she was discharged after only five nights. Girls fare better than boys in the NICU, and medical experts aren’t sure why.
When she’s older, she won’t be shy about sharing her opinions. I’ve learned that girls are insanely more vocal than boys. This princess eats voraciously, complains insistently and plays more loudly than I could have ever imagined. When she’s working on a diaper, well, let’s just say she better outgrow that by the time she’s school-aged or she will be decidedly unpopular.
Audrey’s dinosaur-esque groans and growls were so loud even during her first few weeks that my husband proposed I call the hospital’s baby line to ask if it was normal (no, I didn’t call, but yes, it’s normal). True story. She doesn’t coo and gurgle. She grunts and yells. We are constantly amused by this pretty little monster.
Not only does she act and sound less “sugar and spice” than Jurassic Park, but the popular consensus is that she looks like a feminine version of my husband. My neighbor has started calling her “Dougina.” So much for having a “mini me.”
The majority of new moms and mommies-to-be I know are having girls this year. I’m so excited for this generation of gals. These tough little beauties truly have all the opportunities in the world. Audrey may aspire to be a ballerina gymnast veterinarian horseback-riding princess, as in one of my favorite headlines from The Onion. Audrey could also be a star lacrosse player with a little coaching from her older brother and lookalike dad. If she wants to, that is. And she will surely tell us if she does. Loudly.
Erin lives in Orange County , California with her husband Doug, stepson Max, baby daughter Audrey and “first baby” Nellie, a terrier mix. She’s currently on maternity leave from her job in public relations.