“I’m going to need you to relax so that I can get the rest of these measurements.”

I tried my best to loosen my stomach muscles, to calm myself, to stop the rhythmic spasms. It was of little use. I had not cried that way in an ultrasound for nine hundred and one days. Not since another nurse had laid that cold plastic wand on my belly, took one look, and told me your big brother needed to come out.

These tears were different, however—not born of fear, but surprise. Perhaps shock. Joy. A granted desire that I hadn’t know was so deeply rooted into my heart. A word I never thought I would hear.

“Daughter.”

With the announcement the doctor’s eyes did not leave the screen. She kept on with her work. My own eyes, however, welled fast and full, pouring forth emotions within me I hadn’t known were there.

Daughter.

This was the fourth time I laid on one of those tables eagerly awaiting an answer, boy or girl. The first time, I had no idea what to expect, not until she told us, boy. And then I knew. All was meant to be, this son—our first. The next two times, I knew. Even before the words left their lips, I just knew. Sweet boys of mine.

This time, Little Girl, I had my suspicions, my belly uneasy for far more weeks than with your brothers, the heartburn raging, the symptoms just slightly different than before. Although I guessed it, nothing prepared me for that moment under the soft glow of those lights. Nothing prepared me for that word I had long given up on.

“Were you hoping for a girl?” The technician asked, sitting next to the doctor. I nodded yes, wiping tears from my cheeks. I just hadn’t known how deeply that hope ran.

Your Daddy was busy wrangling your brothers in that tiny room. I saw his smile, yet he was distracted. But then on the way home, as he called your Grandma and Grandpa to announce our news, I heard the crack in his voice.

You see, Little Girl, although we have done this all before with your brothers, we really haven’t. Although you are our last baby, in so many ways you are our first.

You will be my last time breastfeeding, and my first time taking my child to shop for training bras. You will be my last time wearing maternity clothes, and my first overnight shopping trips, like my mom took me on. You will be my last sleepless newborn night, and my first sleepless night waiting up for my daughter to come home from a date.

In that first week that we knew you as our daughter, the realizations came at me one after another. A daughter to take for manicures. A daughter to play dress up with. A daughter to watch hold and nurture her baby dolls. A daughter to enjoy girls’ nights with. A daughter to perhaps one day plan a wedding with. You will be the only other girl I have ever seen your Daddy love so deeply.

And then, the next week, it hit me in entirely different ways.

A daughter to walk through breakups and heartaches with. A daughter to one day tell my story of anorexia to. A daughter to assure, every single day, that she is absolutely beautiful, and plead with God that my words get through. A daughter to worry about as she’s out on her first date. A daughter to pray over in entirely different ways than I do for her brothers. A daughter who will force me to depend on Jesus in all new ways. And that is just what I pray we will do, Sweet Girl. That as we walk into this newness together, we’ll lean hard into Him, together, too.

Because He makes all things new. And He walks right alongside of us into all of that newness, no matter how unknown it is. We’ve got this, Little Girl. And I cannot wait to watch your story unfold.

 

 

Eryn Lynum is a speaker and the author of 936 Pennies: Discovering the Joy of Intentional Parenting. (Bethany House Publishers, 2018) She lives in Northern Colorado with her husband and three boys, where they spend their time hiking, camping, and exploring the Rocky Mountains. She loves to travel and share at conferences, churches, and writers’ groups. Every opportunity she gets, she is out exploring God’s creation with her family.

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