Our Five Ring Circus: To Know or Not To Know

Thursday, March 24, 2011

To Know or Not To Know

When people ask if I know what I'm having, and I tell them that it's a surprise, I get one of two responses: "How could you not find out?!? I could never do that! I'd need to prepare!" or "I think that's wonderful! It should be a surprise!"

There is no right or wrong way to do it. All it comes down to is personal preference!

Truthfully, when I got pregnant with Dylan, I was fully prepared to find out what I was having. Grant was the one who didn't want to know, and he quickly won me over. While I couldn't wait to find out if the baby was a boy or girl, I thought the surprise was exciting!

With Lexie, I wanted a girl so badly. I knew if I found out that I was having a boy at the ultrasound, there would be a flicker of disappointment, whereas I would be completely in love the moment I saw the baby in the delivery room. I had watched several friends experience that momentary disappointment after their ultrasounds, and I didn't want to feel that. Instead, I focused on how much I loved the baby growing inside of me, and by the time I went into labor, I knew it didn't matter one bit.

At the beginning of this pregnancy, Grant and I both considered finding out. We eventually decided not to. Now that we have a boy and a girl, we're prepared for either sex!

While I don't have the experience of finding out the sex at the ultrasound, I can honestly say that finding out in the delivery room is a truly amazing surprise. The excitement of family and friends is contagious, and nothing has ever compared to the moment I first saw my children and heard the doctor announce what they were! I can't wait to experience that again!

There are two big myths about not finding out the sex of the baby:

1. You can't bond with the baby unless you know what it is.

This is absolutely not true! I have bonded with each of my babies while I was pregnant, and felt as if I'd known them forever the first time I held them. While I can't call the baby by it's name, I can give it a sweet nickname. Hence, the reason we still call Lexie by her nickname-Bean! I am still able to talk to the baby, rub my belly, and love the little person growing inside of me! I had an instant bond with Dylan and Lexie, and I'm expecting the same with my sweet little Nugget!

2. You can't prepare unless you know what you're having.

Once again, not true. There are certain things that can't be bought until the baby is born, and the final touches on the nursery will have to wait, but there are many other necessary items that can be bought.

For instance, some of the most necessary items that you will need immediately is diapers and wipes. When you don't know what you're having, you can accumulate quite a collection, instead of just buying clothes! I buy a package of diapers and wipes every time I go to the grocery store.


There are many other basics that can be bought: shampoo, baby wash, lotion, diaper cream, infant medications, bottles, breast pumps, baby carriers, cribs, changing tables, and even baby gear!

I'm not a fan of buying a bunch of gender neutral clothing, but there are plenty of gender neutral items that can be bought. The neutral items tend to go better with home decor (highchairs, pack and plays), and as a big bonus, they can be used for babies of the opposite sex as well!

Luckily, I come from a big family, and they love to buy baby clothes after the babies are born! I only had a few gender neutral clothing items for Dylan. I didn't even have to shop right away for my babies after they were born. We got tons of gender specific clothes, blankets, and baby items from our generous family members and friends!

While I can see the appeal of having the nursery completely finished before the baby arrives, for us, it's not necessary. Our babies sleep in a bassinet next to our bed for the first 4 months. I have plenty of time to put on the crib bedding and add the boy/girl touches to their rooms!

Nugget is the baby I'm most prepared for! Thanks to Dylan and Lexie, I have tons of boy and girl clothing, gear, baby items, and even crib bedding. My mom is preparing to buy summer clothes for the baby after he/she is born, and we've been buying the baby items that we needed to replace or have already received some as gifts. As for the coming home outfit, we just pick out a cute boy outfit and a cute girl outfit, and then return the one that we don't use.

There are some gender-specific things that we will need to buy after the baby is born, but we prepared in advance by stashing away a chunk of money to spend on the those items! We'll get plenty of clothes to get us through summer, and then I can buy the clothes Nugget will need for Fall/Winter. We can't have fun shopping for gender-specific items while I'm pregnant, but we'll have a fun shopping spree after Nugget gets here!

I am a huge planner and big on organization, which is why many are surprised that we have never found out. However, I've found waiting and planning for the unexpected to be easy!

The buildup of anticipation throughout the pregnancy leads up to the sweetest, most exciting surprise! There aren't many surprises in life, but this one is worth waiting for!


  1. I think it's great that you can wait. I just can't. I love surprises, but I hate knowing they are lurking. The other thing for me is that, it's still a surprise...it's just more about when and how you find out.

    My brother and SIL didn't want to know with my niece. However, shortly before my SIL's due date, they discovered that my niece had a large cyst on her ovary. Of course, the doctors had to tell them then that it was a girl. I would hate for a surprise to be ruined that way!

  2. we found out both times....but I wish that I was strong enough to keep a suprise....I just HAD to know. I think that if we have a 3rd we will keep it a suprise for sure :) How exciting for you!!

  3. I think it is awesome that you wait to find out...I'm sure it is a great surprise in the delivery room! I just couldn't do it though, I found out at the ultrasound with all three of mine:)

  4. For me....it's not a surprise. they baby is a girl or the baby is a boy. if the baby comes out with green skin, purple polka dots and a tail - that is a surprise. However, you will love him/her/dots regardless!

  5. You are absolutely correct there is no "right" way to do it. I envy your restraint and that amazing surprise as the baby is born. I found out with both of mine but if we ever had a third I'd go for the surprise.

  6. ahhhhh, IF we have a third child I might be able to hold out, but I can't stand suspense! I always wanna open Christmas gifts weeks before the special day!

    But I think this experience will be BEYOND amazing for all of you! So exciting!!

  7. I love that you are waiting. I'm pretty sure when we have a second that we are going to wait. I can't wait for the big day! What was the nickname you had for Dylan? Happy Weekend!

  8. I think it's awesome to be able to wait and find out. I wish I could have done that and IF we have anymore I will. It seems like it would just make the day way more fun. Diapers and wipes are a must and you know everything else will just flow. I thought I needed so much stuff and sadly half of it I didn't even use. I guess by the third one you have it down and know exactly what you need and will use. Happy Friday to you!

  9. I think it's great that you're waiting to find out. I agree...since you already have a boy & a girl you're already prepared! It'll be the best surprise!

  10. IF there will be another, I would love to wait to find out. We actually didn't really know my first was a girl since they could never tell but they said it might be a girl so I wasn't 100% sure. But, the rest we found out for the other kids sake. they wanted to know if it was a b or g. But, there is another myth...that if you really want a girl/boy and find out its the opposite you will be disappointed. NOt true for me. I wanted girls for all those boys but when they said boy...i fell instantly in love with my boy any way. Just like in the delivery room...whenever you find out...delivery room or u/s, you still LOVE this baby.

  11. I agree. We didn't find out with Elijah, but did with Asher. Both ways worked for us!
    I think it is a surprise either way, and I could not agree more on your oppositions to the myths! you can bond with baby whether you know the sex or not! Hello!?! It is INSIDE you!? GROWING!?

    Anyway, with Asher? My husband spotted his "kickstand" right away, before the tech even said anything. Men and their ability to spot THAT, but nothing else, huh?

  12. We didn't find out last time, and don't plan on finding out this time either! Our nursery is a safari theme, so we're going to do a fun boy room for John and the baby will be all set in John's old nursery :) Since we didn't find out last time, everything important is gender neutral enough, and like you said, the rest can be picked up after the baby comes :)

  13. I don't think I could do it...but I'm totally excited for you and that moment:)

  14. That is really precious and you give very convincing arguments. :)

    For me, I love knowing, not so much for preparing (though that's nice too). I just want to know as much as possible about my babe as soon as possible. I love all the little milestones to look forward to in pregnancy, including finding out the sex.

    But you're SO RIGHT! No matter when we find out, it's still a surprise and we all love our little babes all the same!!

  15. It's awesome that you can hold out. I would have been able to wait this time but am glad that I know :) We can't wait to see nugget!

  16. I think it's awesome you wait! I think if we have another baby, I won't find out the sex.


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