In a previous post I’ve spoken about the fact we had the NIPT Blood Test at 10 weeks pregnant with BattleKid, but an advantage of having the test done was finding out our baby’s gender at 12 weeks pregnant. Now, in the early days of our relationship my husband and I didn’t want children. However, our minds were changed when my sister-in-law had twin girls. We softened to the idea after meeting them at 6 weeks old but it still took us another 6 years to take the plunge.
When we did become pregnant I was 35 years old and I was all too aware of the risks of being an older first time mum. As a scientist, I read a lot of information about those risks and did worry about potentially having a baby with disabilities, such as Downs Syndrome. At my first antenatal appointment my midwife gave me information about the additional quad tests I could have at around 16 weeks pregnant to screen for things such as Downs Syndrome. I wasn’t offered a nuchal membrane scan (in Wales) and I was worried about having to wait so long for these tests. Even then the statistical result they can give you are very tight with numbers such as 1:100 and 1:200.
Then one morning on my way to work I heard an advertisement on the radio for a new blood test for pregnant women that could analyse for trisomy disabilities with statistical numbers of 1:10,000. These numbers stood out for me with my scientific background and I was soon researching this test. As I’ve mentioned I’ve posted about this test before but in summary, it is a blood test that analyses trace amounts of foetal DNA in the mother’s blood. It was only available through two private clinics at the time one of which was in Cardiff, Innermost Secrets, only 5 minutes from where I worked. I rang for more information and discussed it with my husband that night. Despite the expensive price tag we both agreed we wanted to do it. As it is a chromosomal test, it would reveal the baby’s gender and we decided we wanted to know. At just over 10 weeks pregnant I had the blood test, and a scan, and got ready to wait the two weeks for the results to come back. They came back all clear and I had to ask the nurse our baby’s gender as they don’t generally reveal it otherwise.
As mentioned my husband and I had wanted to find out our baby’s gender. We really wanted a girl and neither of us wanted to wait for our 20 week scan if we didn’t have to. I am quite an organised person who doesn’t do well with surprises. Finding out the baby’s gender early, at nearly 12 weeks pregnant, meant I could start planning things like the nursery.
I was told it was a boy, not the girl we had hoped for, and I’ll admit I was a little disappointed. However the fact that our baby was fine in terms of potential trisomy disabilities more than made up for not having a girl. I had also wanted to know our baby’s gender as early as possible in case we weren’t having a girl, to allow me time to come around to the idea of having a boy instead.
I wanted to know so I could plan the nursery, start looking at outfits and think about how our life might look, with a little boy in it. I had to switch from ideas of pink to blue and quickly I got over my disappointment and started envisaging a little boy running around our house.
Finding out our baby’s gender as early as we did meant I had longer to bond with my boy before he was born and it wasn’t long before any lingering thoughts of a girl vanished from my head. I had always wanted to find out the gender of my baby and having the blood test ensured we didn’t need to wait until the 20 week scan nor rely on our baby being in the right position for the sonographer at that scan! And, as the test is a chromosomal test, we came away 100% sure of our baby’s gender so weren’t expecting any surprises at the birth. I’ve heard stories of ladies being told they are having a girl only to deliver a boy. I haven’t heard of it happening the other way around but imagine the surprise of that!
Finding out our baby’s gender was secondary to the main results of the blood test but we were glad we had the opportunity to find out so early on in our pregnancy. We both bonded with our boy sooner and planned things together well ahead of time. Thoughts of pink disappeared to be quickly replaced by a boy running around, with dirt on his face from playing outside with his dogs, and we fell in love with him even more for it. If you asked me now if I could go back and change things I’d say no way! I’d do it all again in the exact same way, boy and all! Our life with our boy is amazing and our house may be messy with cars and bikes everywhere, and it may be a noisy house, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Thanks for reading,