By: John Jericiau
Dear Baby #3,
Hurray! We are out of the first trimester, and you – the size of a lemon – weigh in at an extraordinary three and a half ounces. We are so excited for you to come into the world in about 26 weeks from now, give or take a week or so. You have two older brothers who will no doubt be your protectors and your role models. You have two fathers who will without fail love you and dote on you like there’s no tomorrow. You have four grandparents, seven aunts and uncles, and tons of cousins and other relatives who are looking forward to your arrival. You have a woman who is playing a big part in your journey to our family – she is carrying you and nurturing you and feeding you – just as she did for one of your brothers. You will love her just as if she is one of the family, because she is.
I think about you every day, wondering how you are growing and maturing. Right now you just started squinting and frowning. We have Botox for the side effects but by the time you need it I’m sure we’ll have something even better. You’re starting to pee, but hopefully it’s not waking you up at night like it is your grandpa (and even your daddy now and then). You’ve even started sucking your thumb, although try and limit yourself. Our family for the most part has very straight teeth.
You’re just starting to form a very fine layer of hair (called lanugo), which is funny seeing how your daddy and papa own a laser hair removal center. Most people we see there have fur showing up in unwanted places, so you are a breath of fresh hair. You’re body has straightened out and your head stands much more erect over your shoulders, which is in direct opposition to your daddy who has begun to curve forward, giving him a much clearer view of his feet than ever before.
Your intestines are starting to produce a delightful product known as meconium, which I will be bracing for in the first few poopy diaper changes you have. When your oldest brother shared this with us after his first few days of life, I was sure that his birthmom had ingested way too much chocolate just before his birth.
There’s lots of discussion right now about whether you are going to be a girl or a boy. Either (or both) is fine for your papa and me, but since we are anxiously waiting to hear, I did check my sources for prediction suggestions. One way was by measuring your heart rate; if your heart rate was over 140, you were a girl. Anything under 140, and you were a boy. Your heart rate? 164.
Another predictor is the Drano Gender Prediction Method. I actually had some Drano on hand from a recent backup, so I decided to go for it. It sounded easy enough: add 2 to 3 ounces of urine to a bottle containing 2 tablespoons of Drano on the bottom, and when the reaction stops (bubbling, fizzing, etc.), note the color. Brownish color means boy, and no reaction means girl. I took the Drano-laden bottle into the backyard, because I was not sure how my aim was going to be, and after the first few seconds of peeing into the bottle I was nearly overcome by the fumes. After running from the brewing bottle I made my way back to check the results: no reaction.
The last one I tried was the Wedding Ring Gender Prediction Method. I was excited to use this method since your Papa and I finally got wedding rings for each other this Valentine’s Day, even though we were officially married way back in 2008 when California opened up a small window of time to allow us to marry. I really hope that by the time you are actually able to read and understand this, the thought of two people who love each other being denied the right to get married sounds bizarre and outdated. Anyway, this method calls for a wedding ring to be tied to a strand of hair and hung over the belly. If the wedding ring moves in a strong circular motion, then you’re a girl. If the movement is pendulum in nature, then you’re a boy! While the ring was easy to get, the strand of hair was not. Daddy and Papa have short or nonexistent strands of hair, and your oldest brother has an afro, so that left your younger brother, who was not too keen on the idea of letting us yank a strand out of the blonde mop on his head. After snipping one off later that night while he slept, I tried waving the contraption over my stomach while I lay sprawled out in bed, but all I could focus on was the obvious fact that I have entirely lost my six-pack abs. This method was too depressing to continue.
It doesn’t matter if you turn out to be a boy or a girl. I’m just so happy that you have made it to the second trimester, and everything is looking great. You are part of our family now – a family that we had to work hard to make. And it’s a dream come true for two gay guys who don’t really give a meconium what the world says about it.