O, dear!

The cupcake filling was pink this time! It’s a girl!

Which means that OBoy and OBrother will be welcoming ODear to their small people posse this fall. O my, see what I did there?

Yes, because God has a sense of humor and because I have a rough edge or twelve that need to be smoothed, DanO and I will be venturing into the realm of parenting a girl this time around. I hope she has my freckles.

I have been processing a lot this week. Honestly, I had a rough couple of days after the ultrasound, trying to re-frame things in my mind to fit reality and not my projection of it. Because I think it’s worth sharing, I’ll just say it: I cried a lot. I cried because I had pictured a pack of three little boys running around together in matching plaid shorts. I cried because I don’t feel up to the challenge of raising  daughter to not have body issues or self-esteem issues or boys issues when I didn’t avoid those myself. I cried because motherhood is hard and every once in a while, I doubt my ability to do it well. This is that while.

Naturally, to cope I have snagged a couple of clearance baby girl outfits and a darling headband or three. I can dip my toe in that far for now – as far as cute accessories and polka-dotted leggings – and that is ok. I don’t need to figure out how to frame the birds and the bees talk just yet, because there are ruffled-butt rompers to be purchasing!

I feel I need to apologize. I was a poor, poor social media person this week. After finding out the gender, I announced it in a cryptic way on instagram, boldly on facebook and twitter, then crickets over here on the blog. Whoops. A few people have said “Can’t wait for the reveal!” and I’m sitting here thinking, Didn’t I reveal it already? I guess this is just practice for actual birth announcement whereupon I will have made a check list of the profiles from which official declarations are needed. I wonder if my myspace account circa 2004 still exists? And just for the record, no one actually uses google +, right? K, good.

33 Responses to “O, dear!”

  1. Amber

    Nope. no one does use google+, but I still keep my account, just in case.

    Congratulations on your daughter! Brother Sister coordinating clothes are fun, too. :)

  2. jen_schoeph

    I feel you sister. When we found out almost 5 years ago that our girl was in fact I girl (deep down I knew, oh did I know) I was scared from here to kingdom come. Now? I cannot imagine not having Emilia. She is a sassy, funny, friendly, imaginative, crazy girl. I know the teenage years (possibly earlier?!) will be rough. We know. I’m prepared, I think. I know the hell on wheels I was so if she is half of what I was then I’m good, anything more I may need to be committed. She is also my velcro baby. Still is and she will 5 in November. She’s my girl.

    I promise you the unknown of it is so scary but once you lay eyes on that darling girl you will never look back. And she has two wonderfully protective older brothers and they will dote on her so much your heart will explode!


  3. Kristy

    Allison, I felt the same way when i found out my first was going to be a boy and then again when i found out my second was going to be a girl. It will all work out. I promise. Being a mom to a girl is fun (despite the hard parts). Just think of wedding, baby showers, and births that you will get to be a big part of in 25 years!! :-) Congratulations!

  4. Elaine A.

    It’s all good having a girl, trust me. Of course the purchasing of ALL THE CUTE GIRL THINGS totally helps. ;-) I’m glad you’ve already discovered that…

  5. molly

    Don’t worry. I would have the same reaction. Not because I’m not happy. But because I too have picture three little boys running around my household :)

    I’m sure ODear will fit perfectly into your beautiful family.

  6. Sarah

    I can totally empathize on grieving for reality not matching your mental picture. I was certain, CERTAIN, the life in my belly last year was a little girl, a little sister so wanted by the big sister. I would reuse all those adorable baby clothes! She would be just like her sister. I loved being a mama to little girls. It would be grand!

    But then, late last December, as my ‘she’ was being lifted and placed on my belly, I caught sight of a scrotum even before it was announced. Definitely not a girl part. Pure boy. The joy and love I felt for him immediately was unreal , but still, I was slammed by emotion once we were home. I cried looking at the boxes of girl clothes that wouldn’t be used again. It felt like a knife to my heart every time the big sister told people she had a baby brother “but really wanted a little sister.” It was really hard. I felt bad, like I wasn’t grateful for or don’t adore my little man, which is farthest from the truth. 5 months later, I am head over heels in love with my little man.

    As always, God knew exactly what I needed in my life better than I did. And I wouldn’t change it for the world.

    Hugs and hoorays!

  7. kaitlin cole

    Join the “I cried when I found out it was a girl club”! Thankfully there is grace for that (and a pile of grace for raising the girl). At any rate, we are just entrusted to raise God’s babies the best we can and I KNOW he supplies enough grace for that :)

  8. Teresa Martin

    Hugs Mama!! It is weird to feel so connected to someone I have never met but what can you do.
    You have a beautiful heart! I have seen it in photos and read it in your words. You are not perfect. None of us are but you are a great mama. None of that will change. There will come a time when you look back at this time and laugh at how you could have ever been scared to parent your little girl.
    I have 2 little girls and parenting them has it’s challenges. I have a very dramatic 16 year old who is hanging out in a my 6 year olds body. LOL
    But raising little girls who are soon to be young women has many many amazing responsibilities. You get to be the primary role model in your daughter’s life. The one she looks up to, and emulates. It is a huge responsibility but is so rewarding. You get to be the model for who she will become.
    You will do great. She will be awesome.

  9. Ashley

    Congratulations, OFamily! Welcome to the dangerous world of buying for a daughter, the little baby girl clothes can be very addictive!

  10. Sharone

    I have a theory that Google keeps shutting down its other products (reader, iGoogle) because it is eventually going to try to force us all into using Google+ and eating Google cereal for breakfast off Google placemats in our Google houses while we all have Google hangouts with our Google overlords. But for now? No. No Google+.

    Can’t wait to welcome ODear to the outside world. She’s going to be dearly loved. :)

  11. Kim

    Being a Mom to girls and boys, can I tell you a secret? No gender is easier than the other. Really, I promise. You will do great. She will be SO loved and by knowing she is SO loved, she will grow and blossom and be healthy and happy. We all make mistakes, with boys and girls. I know it is hard. I worry all the time about my issues I am projecting on my children. Hang in there Mama. And cry – it is okay.

    • Kristen

      This. You’re having a person. Not a sex (sex and gender are very different, btw). The child’s anatomy doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll face any of the stereotypically “boy” or “girl” issues. Societal interpretations of gender may stack the deck against you, but you already know what pitfalls you want to avoid based on your own childhood, IF those issues even come up with your daughter.

  12. Sarah

    ODear. I couldn’t love that name more!! I wondered what you were going to call her. I think I already said it on instagram, but I am so so happy for you. Can’t wait for ODear’s debut!!

  13. Kat

    Congrats! I once feared having a baby girl because I would spend too much on clothes, I did :p But my baby girl means the world to me and yours will too!

    I just love the pink frosting in the cupcake! I want to do this for my next baby!

  14. Katie Sluiter

    My jaw may have it the floor when I saw that instagram. And I knew you cried because that is what I would have done too, if I am honest. The thought of getting pregnant with #3 and having it be a girl is scary to me. So Imma just watch you and know that you can do this. And then when you do it with all the grace in the world, I’ll know maybe I will be ok if the Pink ever happens to me too. Maybe. xxoo

  15. Heather


    I was trying to reply to Sharone before leaving my comment to you and I think I maybe did it wrong. So now it looks like I commented that having a girl and being scared about it is seriously funny.


    I’m really happy for you and I want to validate you too. I’m still scared and Elsie is going to be two next week. Being human is so complex and we know what being a female human is like and so it’s scary and hard to imagine knowing what to do. Ever. Of course, common sense says that our girls won’t have the exact same feelings and experiences we did/do, but reality still says that it’s hard. Life as a girl, it’s hard. Somehow, we’re all going to be okay. And in all of its difficulty, this mothering of a girl thing (from what I can tell so far) is so freaking awesome.

    Love you.

  16. Savannah

    Yay! Congratulations! I was anxiously awaiting your announcement! It’s okay to cry! This parenting thing is rough. And getting our minds around things being different than we wanted them to be is rough too! All the same, she’ll be gorgeous and you’ll be the perfect mom for her, or Heavenly Father wouldn’t send her to you! Congratulations again!

  17. Lindsay

    There will be a day (sooner than you think) where you won’t be able to imagine life without ODear. Plus, with two older brothers she’ll likely be pretty rough and tumble herself. She’ll just be building forts in a tutu instead of jeans. ;) I KNOW you’re going to love it one day. The scariest thing you need to deal with right of the bat is cleaning a vagina, and you get used to that pretty quick. ;)

  18. Alexis

    I cried when I found out I was having a boy. I mentioned how much I loved my girl cat… and cried… and it was a mess. As you know I am sure, life gives you what you need. You are going to be awesome with a girl. She is going to be the happiest girl in the whole world, with such a fabulous family. xoxoxo (cookiesandbaby :) )

  19. Rin

    You are going to do great!
    I reckon you’re in the best place to raise a girl having gone through all the twisty issues.
    If she’s anything like her mama she’ll turn out great.

  20. Honey

    Honestly I think if you want to raise a daughter with good self esteem maybe don’t start off by calling her ODear (or Oops or Drama Queen or any other double edged title). I really don’t get this obsession with being a ‘boy mom’ that people in the US have but how about focussing on the real reason you have an ultrasound-to make sure your baby is healthy in there? A little gratefulness and not ‘poor me, girls are sooo hard’ would be nice to see (and maybe lift her esteem a bit in the future when she googles you and finds this in an archive).

    • AllisonO

      Hi Honey. All three of my children have tongue-in-cheek blog nicknames, since, you know, I believe in gender equality. :) What I have found beautiful and fascinating about sharing my story of gender-fear is how many other mothers have also experienced the same emotions, whether for girls OR boys. I have not at all observed the “obsession…in the US” that you describe, but rather have read dozens of moms say “I felt the same way about having a boy”. Fear of then unknown is a very real thing. Lastly, I talked a bit about the ‘what if’ my sweet daughter finds my words someday (and why I chose to write them anyway) in my previous post. Thanks for the comment!

  21. Kristen

    Having a girl doesn’t have to mean any of those things you’re afraid of. Just like having a boy doesn’t automatically mean you’ll have any/all of the typically assumed “boy” issues to deal with. I’m always frustrated when people react to gender reveal news (which is really sex-reveal news, as gender is very different from sex) by saying “girls are so much fun!” or “boys really love their mommies” or whatever. You’re having a person. A totally-unique-from-every-other-person-of-their-sex person. ODear (cute nickname, btw) won’t necessarily be a certain way or have certain issues just because she’s a she, just like your boys won’t necessarily grow up to be violent rage-monsters (or, more innocuously, love trucks or dirt or whatever) just because they’re boys. Does our society’s reinforcement of gender stereotypes stack the deck against you in terms of avoiding those pitfalls you mentioned? Absolutely. But the more you think of your child as “ODear” (or her real name) instead of “a girl,” the better off you’ll be. Like you said, you know what you think was botched or not handled well in your own upbringing, so you already know what to avoid or work harder on. And that’s reasonable. But remember, you could have the most confident, easygoing, happy-with-herself-just-the-way-she-is girl ever born. Or the most tomboyish, doesn’t-give-a-damn-about-girly-concerns girl ever born. You just don’t know. So while it’s smart parenting to consider all the tough things that might come up down the road, I wouldn’t worry about them so much that I spent days crying over things that may not even happen. Like, I know my toddler could contract any number of devastating childhood illnesses (and, as he’s autistic, I know there’s still a chance he may never go to normal school, live on his own, go to college, get married, etc.) and I worry about those things and my husband and I discuss how we deal with them, but I can’t let myself get so consumed by those thoughts that I cry about them for days. Anyway, just wanted to bring up a different point besides what all the other commenters are saying (“I totally understand and agree!!!!” etc etc etc). Do with it what you will. And congratulations on your healthy baby!

  22. mrs.d

    Congratulations on your baby girl! :):) I know it seems scary – and overwhelming – but you’ll be a great mom to a little girl, just like you are to your two little boys.. and just think of how lucky she is to have two big brothers to teach her and look after her! :)

  23. Liz

    Having a girl is scary, but it is also beautifully healing. You are in for a wonderfully amazing treat. Congratulations!

  24. Paige Ridinger Showalter

    Congrats Allie! I’m so excited and happy for you! Just wanted to let you know that I check in on your blog every now and then to see what you and your beautiful family are up to! Miss you and god bless!

  25. Jo

    I cried when I found out Jamie was a boy. Right there in the ultrasound room. I already had two girls and was completely convinced that I was to have a third. We (obviously) adjusted and now I can’t imagine life without my little man. (That didn’t stop me from praying that my fourth would be a girl though and Miss Harper did not disappoint.)


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