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Gender Determination – TO DO OR NOT TO DO?

As soon as you are pregnant the thought of whether you are having a boy or a girl simply clings to your mind and stays till that baby is delivered and you actually “see” the gender! Well with modern ultrasound technology we do have a choice of knowing the sex of the baby as early as 7-8 weeks but quite surely at 12-15 weeks and ahead. The 3D/4D ultrasound also lets you kind of see what the baby is actually going to look like (features, etc).

While the doctor may say that they can be only 98% sure of the gender in most cases they are fairly accurate. (No one in the profession will ever admit to it and please dont take my word for it. I am not a doctor!

This personal decision of knowing the gender of the foetus remains in the hands of the mother and the father. While it is a personal choice for each couple, I quite liked the idea of of knowing that my baby was going to be a boy in advance. In fact I was so surprised that we could actually plan everything in the future around knowing the gender like the theme for the baby shower, the nursery, the names, clothes, other accessories like toys, bedding, burp cloths, boppy pillows, sippy cup bottles, strollers, carseats, shoes, socks,  in the correct color , style, etc.  What a relief in a country where boys and girls are so divided into blue and pink. Well there are some neutral colors you can pick from like yellow, orange , green but knowing the gender just sounded right in my head at that time. 

When I say I think it is awesome to know the gender is only because I live in the freedom loving United States of America. If I was living in India or China, I would probably be opposed to the whole idea. In my native country India, gender determination is illegal as it may lead to female foeticides and infanticides.

Long time ago I read a book about Lost Daughters of China by Karin Evans and the sorry state of girl babies being left at orphanage door steps brought tears to my eyes for days on end. If you are a part of a family that is going to frown upon a baby of whatever gender , it is better to delay knowing the gender or declaring the gender so you do not have to bear the pressure of their disappointment throughout your pregnancy. Even better is to avoid such people in your life and maintain a more positive environment around you. 

Keep in mind, be it a boy or a girl, the main aim of a parent is most certainly and in most cases the health of the mother and the baby. Everything else is secondary. Your child be it first, second, a boy or a girl, is ultimately your child. And you will love him/her and take care of him/her no matter what. And if anyone else tells you anything else even if it is your closest relative like your husband or your mother or your inlaws or your best friends, just know that they are wrong!

With that said, I would like to know if my readers found out their babies’ gender before they were born? If yes why? and If not, then why not?

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How to choose a gynecologist?

When I was pregnant and new in town I had no clue how to look for a gynecologist.  Also my insurance limited a lot of gynecologists that I could choose from. That did not help me much but even from that small pool there was a task in front of me to make sure I chose the right practice.

Before actually looking for one, make a list of what is important to you, for example

1. Someone who has a more holistic approach and  not a pill pusher

2. Someone who is willing to honor your birthplan or someone who is able to guide you to make one and help stick to it in most circumstances

3. Someone who encourages waterbirth if you are looking for one or someone who is ok to not give you epidural or maybe someone who wants to give it to you right away

4. Someone who is rightly qualified and reliable

5. Someone who is not outright mean or if you want one then someone who is very straightforward and right to the point and sometimes mean

6. Someone who practices in a certain hospital that is close to you or reputed in your area, etc.

These are just examples of what you may or may not want from a doctor. It is not a complete list or a go to list of what you may want in one but it is a good starting point.

Once you have the list  of what you are looking for then you can go searching for one using a guideline as listed below!

1. Go through your insurance list and see who offers services under your plan

2. Then first check who are the closest to you

3. Now go to the internet and check ratings. Look for comments and reviews.

4. See if this doctor reviews tell you what you want him / her to be based on your needs listed above.

5. If not, take an appointment to just have a conversation with the practice to get a feel for it. Then make a decision. If you dont find him/her satisfactory move on. Though remember some doctors don’t take new patients if you are far too along in your pregnancy already while looking for a change. I am not sure if a gynecologist will just meet you for a conversation but you can always call and check and sometimes they wont charge you for just an introductory visit.

6. If you have friends with kids in the same town ask where they go and ask for their recommendations. If you do not know anyone in town, consider joining a club for new mommies or see if your area has meetups for new moms. Meetup.com has great resources for finding people who are going through everything you are and form an excellent support system.

Hope these tips help you find the doctor you want!

If you have any more tips please let me know and I will add them here!

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Asking for help when Pregnant and After Delivery.

At work or at home, please feel free to ask for help. If you need to carry weights for more than 20 lbs, please check with your doctor for a limit and a note. If you are dealing with morning sickness try to reduce your work timings or change them to more suitable ones. Try to get your work responsibilities changed to less stressful ones if possible.

If you are not able to cook/clean, ask someone from your family to come and help. My mother in law offered to take care of me during my first trimester as my husband was in law school and I think that was the best thing that could have happened! My morning sickness was controlled in a few days after she arrived and I got delicious and healthy home made food I was craving for! Not everyone gets along with their MIL so if you don’t want to call yours that is perfectly fine.

But don’t say no to any kind of help that you can get. If your friends want to do something for you, ask them to bring you fresh food or help you with the groceries or take care of your first child for an hour or two while you catch a nap.

Our subdivision does a MealTrain (http://www.mealtrain.com/) for new moms for almost a month from due date. I think it is the best support you can get when everyone is so busy and tired after the new arrival. My point for this post is REST as much as you can because once the baby is here, you will forget what resting peacefully was!