Welcome to my blog. I write about fitting in, sticking out, and missing the motherland as a serial foreigner.

Arab PregnancyWatch

The only people in my personal acquaintance who are as vigilant about their PregnancyWatch duties as Mormons, are Arabs. And with the Arab version of PregnancyWatch, the speculation and hounding could conceivably (ha ha) continue even if you have four, five, six kids - if all of those kids happen to be girls, anyway. Off the top of my head, I can think of three Arab families I know who have had girl after girl after girl (after girl...) and then a boy, and they've openly admitted that they just kept having kids until they got a boy. It's a very commonly held goal around here. Recently, at a baby shower, I sat next to a fellow guest who cradled her eighth (!!!) baby in her arms, a boy, born after years of girl after girl after girl.... She was not shy about admitting that while she enjoyed her large family, she was relieved to be done having children at last. Because, you know, now she had a boy.
Seated on my other side at that baby shower was the woman's aged mother-in-law. Since her own daughter-in-law had now fulfilled her duties, she turned to me and asked how many kids I had. In a brief conversation with her, it was quickly established that a) two was not nearly enough children, especially since b) they were both girls, and c) I was to attempt to produce a boy as soon as possible. Thanks for the family planning advice, random aged mother-in-law!

That was a while ago. This morning, I was given a lengthy lecture on the best ways to ensure conception of a boy. The context? I was half-naked on an exam table. The lecturer? My lady doctor (I was visiting her for a checkup). And no, I had not asked for this advice. It was assumed I wanted it, because I have two kids, and they are both girls. DUH.

But you know, I have come to realize that most of this gentle (or not so gentle) prodding from friends and strangers is given in the spirit of kindness, and is meant only to encourage, not shame or embarrass. At least that's how I've learned to take it. It's not hard at all to just smile and nod, thank them for their good wishes, and carry on...

...because little do they know that having all girls is AWESOME and I love it and I don't feel like a boy child is necessary for family happiness at all. So there.

July 6th, outsourced

Into the lion's den