Tag Archives: due dates

Why I Won’t Share My Due Date— or Baby’s Name!

It’s funny the things that annoy other people about a pregnancy that is not theirs. There are two things I keep a secret during every pregnancy.

1. My EDD (that’s estimated due date!)

2. The name we have chosen for the baby

Thankfully, those closest to me no longer hound me (except maybe my friend in Missouri who tries to trick me regularly into telling her the name of this little guy haha!) But for some reason, people get real cranky when you don’t tell them these things.

So why keep it a secret?

Our EDD

With our first pregnancy, we shared Captain’s EDD with people. One minor annoyance was as soon as I would tell people “He’s due March 13th” they had the weirdest responses.

“You should keep that baby in til March 16th! My uncle’s dog’s brother’s owner’s sister’s cousin was born then and he’s a great kid.”

“I’m pulling for March 5th! That’s when my son was born! I hope you have your baby on his birthday!”

“Don’t have your baby on March 8th. That’s the day my father in law died. That’s a horrible day to have a baby.”

I have no control over holding this kid in or making it come out. The baby comes when the baby comes. I guess people were trying to relate, but for some reason, I found it really annoying. This is probably because I’m a horrible person and need to learn patience, but it still makes me feel awkward and I never know quite how to respond.

However, the main reason we don’t share my EDD is this: it’s just what it says it is. An ESTIMATED due date. I’ve never had a child on their EDD. One was a couple days before, one was a week after, one was 23 weeks too early, one was 2 days after. I don’t need people hounding me at 38 weeks until 41 weeks every day saying “did ya have that baby yet??” Yeah, I totally had the baby weeks ago and just didn’t tell you. Like, c’mon y’all. You’ll know.

Some uteruses are slow cookers and some are microwaves. Mine is a slow cooker. Gotta let that baby marinate a bit longer til s/he is ready.

Our Baby’s Name

Why keep their names a secret? I think this is multifaceted. Firstly, opinions on names are like armpits. You know the rest, right? So let’s say I’ve picked the name Naphtali for my next child. You tell someone little Naphti is on the way and suddenly everyone is an expert on names. “Aren’t you afraid he’ll be nicknamed Nympho-li in 8th grade?” “Isn’t that gonna be hard for people to spell?” “I knew a Naphtali in kindergarten and he used to pee his pants all the time. Whenever I hear the name Naphtali, I smell urine.” But after that baby is born and named, no one can say anything to your face about it without seeming like a major jerk, and that cute baby is already charming them, so they are more likely to be accepting of his name.

Secondly, names are a really big deal. Like you are pegging someone as a Gertrude or a Lambert for life. What you name them will define them. It’ll sometimes decide if they get hired for that right job someday. It will determine how often it is misspelled or mispronounced. It’s a big decision. And it’s one Milkman and I like to make on our own! We love the fun aspect of having a secret that belongs only to us. Yeah, that’s right, we don’t even tell our kiddos! (Mostly because they are all really young and don’t know how to keep secrets!) I love getting into bed at night and Milkman kissing my belly and talking to our baby, using the name that only we two know.

Thirdly, and this applies to both the due date and the name, surprises are fun. I LOVE surprises! They are my love language. When I called my mother to tell her that I had given birth to her granddaughter and told her said grandchild was named for my mother, she cried! It was beautiful. The anticipation leading up to the baby being born and being named is fun. People guess and wonder, and I get to giggle at their ridiculous guesses! We already know so much before our babies are born, their sex, often genetic issues, how much they weigh (okay, they are basically ALWAYS wrong about that), and with 3D ultrasounds, many know what their baby already looks like (if their baby was modeled out of peanut butter that is). So having something to save for the end is always a treat.

Now, I have lots of friends who tell their due dates, names, stats, and post ultrasounds of their unborn child’s genitals. That’s cool for them, and I love knowing and celebrating with them beforehand. So I don’t judge people who do it differently, and I get why people think we are annoying for not sharing. But in a world of information overload, it’s kind of fun to be different.

What things did you keep a secret before delivery? Or do you like to share all your happy news at once?

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It’s Your Due Date, Ezra.

Dear Ezra,

Today is your due date. Of course being the crazy birth junkie your mama is, I call it a guess date. Had you not been born at 17 weeks and you made it to full term you would most likely have chosen your own birthday anyway.

But time is important to your mama, and milestones are important to we silly humans. I’ve always thought it a nice gesture God gives us time when it is meaningless to Him… But I digress.

Today is for warm. 77 degrees, bright blue skies, and windy. The sun is out and your big brother Captain and your big sister Mamitas have played in the backyard all day. Your little sibling, our sweet little rainbow blessing, tucked safely in my womb, is making his or her presence known by making me moan away with nausea, headaches, and an aversion to any food that isn’t a cheeto. I’ve parented from a horizontal position all day. Papa just came home. He’s worked hard all day and just came home early to help me with your energetic siblings…

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He came over to kiss and hold me and we cried a few seconds before your big brother and sister jumped on papa’s back and started talking about the cat and how many deals did papa make today and did papa bring home food. And then we watched a hummingbird drink nectar from our lemon blossoms while Captain hid behind us and asked if it was a bee, and I was reminded that grieving when children are around is done in spurts, in between kissing owies, making meals, answering questions, wiping bottoms, and nursing thirsty toddlers.

Today would have been so different if it was your birthday. There still would have been pain, tears, emotional upheaval… But there would have been much joy. We would laugh and I would be experiencing your first latch and smelling your sweet little head. I would have been gushing over tiny size 0 diapers and holding your long newborn fingers and sharing your name with the world for the first time.

Of course we know God works all things for good and for His glory. 10,000 people have read your story. People don’t refer to you as my miscarriage, they call you Ezra. Because you were a person and so very real. Your memory is loved and cherished not just by papa and me, but by our friends and family, and even strangers I’ve never met have emailed me and shared their love for you. I wouldn’t have had the same compassion I do now on families who have lost their babies. I wouldn’t have been diagnosed and treated for early stages of endometriosis, which ultimately led to becoming pregnant again… And though this child never could and never will take your place, and though this child will never fill the empty place you’ve left in my heart, I am thankful to not be at your due date with an empty womb, though my arms and heart still feel very empty without you.

It’s been 23 weeks to the day since I held you last. You were beautiful but your skin was so cold I could hardly stand it, I wanted you to be warm and breathing and living and thriving, but it was not meant to be. I wear a chain of green yarn from the blanket I made you around my wrist and it hasn’t come off since you were born. I have two necklaces from my dear friends Ashley and Jessica with your name on them and I wear them and Captain calls them “Wezza necklace” and touches the pendants gently and asks if I’m sad and I miss Wezza. I have a quilt made just to your size from my friend Melody. It sits with my pictures of you and your foot prints. And then of course I have your ashes. It’s all I have left of you physically, and every time I look at that little royal blue bag that holds the box your remains are held in, I can’t believe that you didn’t make it.

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Ezra, my sweet boy, you’ve touched my life in such big ways, and while I don’t know why you couldn’t live I know that I miss you. And more than that, I know that I love you. You will always be numbered among my living children because I grew you in my body and I loved you so intensely I can’t go an hour without thinking about you. My beautiful, sleeping baby… Mama loves you.

Love,
Mama

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