Little Boy Blue

So despite what 4-5 out of 9 stupid online quizzes had to say, Baker Baby #2 is apparently a little brother!

All the appropriate body parts accounted for, no visible abnormalities, healthy squirmy kiddo all the way around. Long legs that he likes to put over his head. 🙂

ultrasound

Both times, with Henry and now with “Gotham”, I’ve come away with a lot of different thoughts and feelings. One that struck me this time was that I wondered what our OB* thought of our reactions. Logically, I suppose he probably doesn’t care one way or another — I imagine people have a wide range of emotions in those moments. But I can’t help but wonder if we are reacting in a….. normal way? I have heard many stories of exaltation, tears, etc. — of big emotional reactions as the machine reveals whether the family in question will be welcoming a little boy or a little girl. And we don’t outwardly do that. I know we are feeling big emotions, but something about that environment and that moment brings out the quiet “huh!” in me. Like, “huh! that’s interesting”… I just find myself without anything to say to this guy who is basically a stranger as he prods my belly and tries to get me to decipher the between-the-legs shot for myself.

Oh, and so with Henry, it was so incredibly obvious exactly what flavor of child he was. The very first shot was right between the legs. And with “Gotham” the OB kept trying to get us say what the gender was, and we were both just like, “um, could you just say a pronoun now?” We couldn’t tell at all! So for the first day or two I think I was telling everyone “Well, according to the doctor, it’s a boy……” I never did really see it with my own eyes!

Anyway, so it turns out that “Gotham” is a boy. According to the doctor.

And I honestly thought that I had been telling people the truth when I said that I didn’t have a preference for a boy or a girl, so I was pretty surprised when I realized that that wasn’t actually the case. I had a little bit of a rough 24 hours there, and if you’ve ever had the dubious pleasure of experiencing pregnancy hormones you can just imagine what that might have looked like. The worst of it was feeling like absolute scum for feeling any sort of sadness over being pregnant with a beautiful, healthy baby of any gender — after all of the months and years of fearing I’d never have my babies, while knowing all of these people who haven’t yet, or won’t ever, have theirs.

And then I got over it and now I’m unambiguously happy and excited.

I mean, I felt a bit of a pang when I walked into the Old Navy baby section and saw clothes in the most seriously adorable pink buffalo plaid, because COME ON, pink buffalo plaid? Is there anything more amazing? Why isn’t this in my size?

pinksuit

But it’s okay, because they had the exact same adorable little suit in a blue buffalo plaid, and it came home with me.

blue buffalo plaid suit

This is Gotham’s second little warm thing for when he arrives in January. The first came from his Grandmommy, who knows exactly what a little Gotham needs:

gotham suit

I am wishing that I could find the “big brother” correspondent to this cute pair of navy-and-orange jammies:

little brother

We don’t need a ton of clothes for Gotham, since he has a very fashionable big brother, but Henry was tiny in fairly warm months and Gotham will be tiny in January/February — which is bitterly cold around here — so I’ll enjoy collecting a few little warm fuzzies for him. I do the vast majority of my baby/toddler shopping at consignment shops but couldn’t resist hitting a few Labor Day sales this weekend!

Sidenote: Now that the gender is known, people are very interested in what name(s) we might be considering. I would like to direct those folks to some of our previous thoughts. 🙂

* I am seeing a fantastic certified nurse midwife, but she shares a practice with an obstetrician who is very talented with the ultrasound machine, so he runs that aspect of things.

 

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Pablo

This is Pablo.

This is Pablo. He is my little monkey but will one day soon be passed on to my firstborn. This is funny, you see, because some people like to refer to their babies as being little monkeys.*

I’ve had to stop thinking of Kermie as Pablo because I was actually getting attached to the name, and I don’t think it’s necessarily the most appropriate fit of all time! (Ryan says if the baby is born on May 5, we can name him Pablo; I don’t necessarily think of the name as being from Mexico so much as from Spain, though. Like Picasso! Of course, Pablo Neruda — whose poetry I love — was from Chile. So there you have it.)

(The first Neruda poem I ever read, coincidentally, was about socks.)

Anyway, Pablo is from a grocery store in McCall, Idaho. That is, perhaps, an odd place to find a blue sock monkey with specially-embroidered eyes so that tiny humans with oral fixations don’t chew off the buttons and choke. Nevertheless, that is where Pablo came from. He had a friend who was rainbow colored with a mohawk; if you want a monkey friend, you can probably go to McCall and adopt one for yourself. Or, y’know, since he’s made by TY, you could probably find one somewhere else as well.

Pablo has been trying to help Ryan and I figure out what — if not actually Pablo or Kermit — to name our impending progeny.

Pablo with name book

As of today, Pablo (and Kermit) notwithstanding, there are eight names still on the list. Eight is better than twelve but still not as good as 2-3, so we took advantage of a very nice overnight getaway to see if our brains functioned any better at 5,000 ft than they did at 2,700 ft. We put each of the eight names onto its own little sheet of paper, and independently ranked them and compared the results, only to find that we had almost exactly opposite rankings — except for the #1 choice which, as soon as I began thinking of it as a real possibility, began to lose its appeal. BECAUSE I AM A FREAK LIKE THAT AND DO THAT TO EVERY SINGLE NAME YAAARGH WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME.

Ryan then seized the opportunity to do some magic math, and combined our two rankings into one composite ranking. You can see Ryan and Pablo hard at work in the extremely well-lit photo here.

Ryan and Pablo do magic math

I then proceeded to drive him crazy by questioning his technique, criticizing his list, and rejecting his results. He responded by throwing me out into the snow and locking the door behind me calmly trying things the way I suggested, coming up with almost the exact same results, and being very nice to me even though I was a nutcase.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Just because we came up with a ranked list this past weekend doesn’t mean that we actually have an answer, a top-three list, or anything that we’re ready to share with anyone. I’m sorry if that hurts anyone’s feelings, but that’s what we need right now as we continue to get our bearings on this.

Some of the names that had been early frontrunners are very traditional, fairly common names; three of the eight names, in fact, are among the top 20 nationwide from 2011. I didn’t necessarily have an enormous problem with that, especially given that these three names aren’t quite as popular in Idaho as they are across the country… until I got to thinking about the fact that our last name is so incredibly common. Ryan has had trouble getting a unique email address for this reason, and even in our relatively small city I’ve had my medical records mixed up with another woman with my name. I had begun thinking that it might be in Kermie’s best interest to have a little bit less common first name so that he wasn’t one of a thousand Google hits.

Of the other five names, only one is in the top 100 in the United States; the other four didn’t make the cut, although three of them are in the top 300 and the last is in the top 600.

The name that ended up in the #1 spot has two obvious diminuative forms (think Kate for Katherine or Sue for Susanna), one of which — the one we’d prefer — has some definite cultural associations. These are positive but slightly nerdy connotations, and I’m not really uncomfortable with them, even though I’m sure some people would think we named our child “after” one of the famous bearers of said name (which wouldn’t be the case). Oh well!

Two of the names in the top 8 have no apparent nicknames, which is something that kind of bugs me… but maybe not as much as it used to.

Of course, both Ryan and I had favorites that were the other person’s least favorites. It’s too much to ask that, despite always scoring exactly the same on personality tests, etc., we’d like exactly the same names! His #3 is my name #8, and his #4 is my #7; I had a tie for #2, and the two names on my list in that spot are his #6 and #8 choices.

Hmm. Well, we’ll see. I guess it’s at least saying something that, at that particular moment in time, we both liked the same name for choice #1…

Pablo face

* The sentence immediately preceding the asterisk is hilarious. It’s okay if you don’t know why, though. It’s a location joke. Nothing to see here. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, etc.

 

30!

Hey look — it’s the 3/4 mark!

loading: 75%

Kermie — who needs to hurry up and name himself already — celebrated the 30-weeks’-gestation mark by being exceptionally active all day long. We almost reached a distracting level of squirminess; I was thankful that he hadn’t yet gotten to the point where he could inflict pain (or that he hadn’t positioned himself under my ribs) because it would have been a pretty uncomfortable day if he had.

If he’s of average size, Kermie is between 15.5 and 16 inches long now (for reference, an American Girls doll is 18″ long) and weighs about three pounds. All these pregnancy websites seem to think that women want to associate their baby with different types of food (which I think it kind of gross, actually); apparently a head of cabbage weighs about the same as a 30-week baby. They’ve stopped giving me very much information about all the new developments, since at this point the main thing that Kermie is doing is gaining weight. I did read something interesting, though; when a baby is born, his vision is about 20/400. It then improves to 20/20 (generally speaking) after birth.

Anyway, when I got home last night, I was relaxing on the couch in a fairly tight white t-shirt. As I watched, my stomach went nuts. Up until now, I never would have believed that babies moved so much that you could see it through flesh and clothing; I mean, I’d heard that such things happened, but I couldn’t quite fathom it. I know it’s probably a clichĂ©, but it was literally like watching a bunch of puppies or kittens squirming under a piece of fabric.

When I got old enough to think about such things, I always kind of worried that being pregnant would be somehow… gross. Definitely weird. But the thing is, while occasionally astonishing, it’s really never unpleasant to feel him rocking and rolling in there (at least, not yet). I’m not freaked out by it. Instead, it’s oddly comforting — like having a pet on your lap, only it’s with you all the time. And it’s this strangely personal thing; it feels like everyone must be able to feel this tectonic activity going on, that everyone must be able to see it — but in reality, it’s just you and the baby. Even Ryan missed out on all the in-utero partying, because every time he’d come over to watch or feel, Kermie would freeze.

Toward the end of the evening, something happened in there. Either someone slipped Kermie a Red Bull, or he didn’t like something he heard on the SOTU (we were watching it on DVR) or he just really wanted my attention… because he picked out a spot about three inches left of my belly button, and did this to it:

punchI am not even kidding. I have no idea how he punched or kicked so rapidly while in water, or why. It was the strangest thing ever, and while it didn’t exactly hurt, that spot was a little sensitive for several minutes afterward.

I really have to wonder whether this is a boy thing, or if in-womb personality indicates what he’ll be like when he’s born. Is Kermie going to be the kid who never sits still and refuses to sleep? Are our jokes about him being a martial artist or break dancer not, in fact, actually jokes? Or is this just the result of a random bunch of factors — my diet, how much room he has, his position, outside stimuli? I hope that Kermie grows up to be a confident, happy (and obviously healthy) boy and man; he certainly doesn’t seem like a shy little kid right now, but then again, even the most introverted child might let down his guard when alone with his favorite person (and I’d like to assume that at this point, that’d be me).

Man. Thirty weeks. Definitely a case of time being relative… it simultaneously feels like this has been going on forever, and that it is all moving frighteningly quickly…