First 42: Choosing The Sex


By Nancy Cherotich

If at the point of conception I would have a say on what sex the child I am carrying would be, I would definitely go for a girl.

This is not for any specific reason other than the fact that I already have a boy and I would have liked to experience what it means to raise a girl. I would have wanted to go out and buy all those very cute clothes that now seem to hit my eyes everywhere I go.

I would have wanted someone to share some tea with as we gossip when she grows up. A person I would share my fears, deepest and darkest secrets with, challenges and successes without fear of my secrets being out there.

I wanted to raise a more fearless, stronger and a better version of me. I also think there is a higher chance of the baby resembling me if it is a girl than a boy. However knowing that the sex of the baby is beyond my control, I was totally ready and open for any sex.

When I was expecting my firstborn, my mother predicted way before I went for my scan that I was expecting a boy. When I asked her why she thought so, she said that the fact that I called her every night crying because I missed her was what gave it away.

Apparently, pregnant mothers carrying boys always adore her and those carrying girls tend to hate her. So when I knew that I was expecting, I tried to tell myself that I was not as attached to my mother as the first time despite the fact that I called her every single day.


I did not cry, that was a good sign. I also tried to Google and see if there was a way I could tell the sex of my baby without having to go for a scan. All the signals indicated that I was carrying both a boy and a girl. The frequent headaches showed that it was a boy yet the rashes and pimples on my face indicated that I was carrying a girl.

My dry arms and legs were an indication that a boy was growing inside me but my mood swings showed that I was carrying a boy. I got so confused that I decided to wait until the day I would go for the scan.

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Funny thing is the day I went for my scan I was such a mess emotionally that all I wanted was to get done with it and continue with my day. I watched silently as the doctor did his thing and when he finally asked me why I was so quiet, I asked him if my baby was okay.

He replied that he was fine. “It’s a he?” I asked, “Yes Nancy, I said that 5 minutes ago, are you okay?” I replied that I was fine and I was waiting for the summary and hence I was not paying attention to his monologues. So the drama filled baby was a boy after all!

The chronic heartburns were not after all a sign that I was carrying a very hairy girl. This my child might have probably guessed that the bond I share with Kyle is so strong because of what we have been through together and he knew coming without drama might make him easily forgotten. I am carrying a star; that I can tell for sure.

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All I can pray for is that this child resembles me. That the swollen feet, pimples, receding hairline, headaches, pimples and fatigue are all signs that he is busy resembling me.

Speaking of Kyle and our bond, I was so worried that he would grow jealous and probably refuse to bond with the new baby and even rebel. The fact that he used to refer to the baby as “Huyo mtoto wako” got me very worried. I started to spend as much time with him no matter how tired I was or how swollen my feet were just to show him that I still cared for him.

On the days that I am too tired, I call him and ask him to stay by my side as I sleep and he watches his cartoons. I can see the results already. Yesterday, he stayed by my side as I slept and when I woke up and commented that I wanted tea, he got off the bed and asked my girl to prepare for me some tea. He brought it to my room when it was ready, served it and asked me if I would take it with anything.

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He then asked me to call him whenever I needed my cup refilled with more tea. After a while, he came back and asked me, “Mum, tutaita aje mtoto wetu? Na cot yake itakua kubwa ndio nikue nikilala na yeye?”

It took me all my strength to fight back the tears in my eyes. I did not know if it was the fact that I have a flu and I looked miserable and close to death or the fact that he finally understood that the baby would change nothing between us, but by the time he was thanking me for carrying him in my stomach and placing his hands on my stomach and laughing as the baby kicked, the tears just flowed. We are ready to welcome our baby and yes, we have already picked a name.