Recently G and I became certain that the microbe must have guessed about Thing 2. Not only was there a sudden and marked interest in my “big tummy” but also lots of enthusiastic role play in which he is a big brother animal helping to look after a baby brother animal.
A couple of times I picked up on it and asked him “why do you think my tummy is so big?” but he’s been unwilling to venture an opinion other than that it might be made of food. (I can’t entirely deny it). So we decided to wait for Monday’s scan before telling him the news.
As it turned out, the scan went really well. We had a great ultrasound specialist and were relieved to see that our tiny humanoid has all of its parts in the right place… hooray! And not a willy in sight. A girlbot! “Ruprechta” it is, then.
This is probably the best pic that we got…
That evening we came clean with the microbe and he’s turned out to be very excited by the news. I had to laugh at his immediate reaction when he learned that he was going to have a baby sister…
“But I’ve already GOT a sister!” [confused face]
“Heh! Well, that’s true. But now you will have two! And this one will be a tiny baby sister and you’ll be her big brother”
“Oh! I can help with the baby!” [glee face]
“Yes. You’ll be my little helper.”
“I’m not little, mummy!”
“No, of course not. You’ll be my special big-boy helper”
“Can I help to feed her and carry her?”
“Yes, of course! And you can push the pram, and you’ll be such a big boy you’ll be able to read stories to the new baby and teach her lots of things”
“Can I teach her what all of the animals say?”
Bless him. He’s told everyone at nursery today and he’s ever so curious to know when she’ll arrive and what she’ll look like and what we’ll call her. I’ve shown him the ultrasound picture and compared it with his own. He also loves to hear stories about when he was in my tummy and what happened on the day he was born, and how we decided to call him James.
Tonight he’s been talking to my tummy a lot because I told him that she can hear us. It’s really sweet, but I’m under no illusions that he’s going to take it quite so well once the reality of a crying, wrinkly, non-talking, non-aardvark-shaped girlbot turns up and steals all of my attention. I suspect it’s going to be a tough ride for my little mummy’s boy, but c’est la vie. (I can still remember feeling very jealous of my younger brother when I was around James’s age, but we ended up as thick as thieves once he was old enough to become my henchman and get up to no good with me all day long.)
As for the girlbot, it seems I’m going to get loads more chances to look at her before she comes out. Apparently the NHS gets a bit twitchy once you become an ancient crone of “over 40” and they’ve already booked me in for 3 more scans before the baby is born. Blimey!
I must say I’m feeling very big this time around. I’ve already turned into a T-Rex who can’t reach the kitchen cupboards because the bump won’t let me get close enough to the counter. Tsk. I’d also also quite like to go back in time by a few days and un-read some things on the internet about other women’s terrible childbirth stories. (Gargh.)
As for the microbe… the excitement of a prospective new sibling is nothing compared to his newfound love affair with Bambi. The toy fawn that he got from Grandma last birthday seems to have usurped even the aardvark for top bedtime cuddles – and he’s somehow managed to rope two of his boy cronies into “playing Bambi” with him every day at nursery.
In return, he sometimes has to play Poo Ponk, which is his BFF’s favourite game. Hands up who wants to know what Poo Ponk involves? That’s all of you, yes? Well.. according to James, Poo Ponk is a 2-person game in which one child plays a man called “Ponk” who runs around the room and the other child chases after him until he does bottom burps, then child 2 pretends to be his poo-poos.
Er, back to Bambi…
Such was the boybot’s enthusiasm, I got carried away and bought an ill-advised copy of Bambi 2. Dear me – what were Disney thinking? All of the charm and subtlety of the original is gone, with the lovely, hand-painted artwork from the 1940s usurped by flat, textureless animation. The original manages to portray the beauty and danger of forest life with minimal dialogue, whereas Bambi 2 might have been scripted for a kids’ sitcom of the 1990s. (I mean – really – would Bambi ever shout “woo-hoo”?)
Luckily the boybot has no discretion or taste whatsoever and seems to love it just as much as the original. It also really tickles him in places. I don’t very often notice him laughing out loud when watching kids’ TV, but there’s a line in Bambi 2 that gets him every time, where a grumpy porcupine glares at Bambi’s pompous father and yells “What are you looking at, you big Moose?” Apparently this is hilarious to a 3 year old. (“He’s not really a moose, mummy, he’s a stag!“)
Well I seem to have rambled on far more than I meant to, so I shall stop. Goodnight all and sweet dreams.