First, thank you for all the emails and comments regarding my mean mommy moment. I feel so much better about it all after reading about how many of you felt that you were stuck in the role of people-pleaser and struggled to break that habit. I'm not sure I was a people-pleaser so much as a self-underminer, but I am determined to show my daughter that she can look out for her own best interest without being a mean girl. The few women I know who have vowed that their daughters WILL NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES become people-pleasers have been the mothers of the girls who tend to coerce and manipulate the other kids. I just can't believe that that's the only other option.
The one thing my daughter said is something that I think we all know too well - it's so much easier to figure out, afterwards, what would have been the best thing to say. Doing it in the moment is the tricky part. And figuring out who tends to put you in those spots is crucial - it turns out that the sleepover girl tends to be pushy in lots of situations. Which is probably useful, since I can almost certainly rely on her to provide some "learning opportunities". And the other thing is, she's not a bad kid, really - it will probably be good for her to be stood up to, just to know that she can't always have everything her way.
Maybe the expectations of "being a girl" are much broader and less stereotypical than they were when we were kids - but most of the same cliches are still there. The mean girls are still wearing short shorts and lots of lip gloss and flipping their hair around when the boys are watching. The boys still flock to the eyelash-batting queen bees, who make perfect fake MacCaulay Culkin-esque expressions of shock when their bra straps are snapped. But I do think the quieter girls have a better time of it these days - at least when my daughter is teased about being too Hermione Granger-ish, she takes it as a compliment.
By the way, I won't have to worry about girl issues this next time around - today's scan left no doubts about that:
That second image is an upside down baby with knees up and ankles crossed - fetal yoga? Couldn't really ask for a better angle, though.
As far as the other things that this "early structural" scan revealed, all systems look good, there are no soft markers for any of the problems that routinely show up at this phase, and blood flows through the placenta and the cord are fine. The cord has three vessels and the placenta is safely out of the way on my right side. The second trimester screening info should be back next week - and my OB says that the fact that she hasn't heard yet is a good sign. Bad news tends to come back faster, for some reason. The other interesting thing she told me that the first trimester screen - blood plus nuchal scan - is more accurate for Down's than the second - there are less false positives.
I know there are 97,000 other things that can go wrong, but being oooooold means that Down's is more likely, so that's been a concern all along. My daughter said she just hopes the baby's cute. I told her I hope he doesn't have any major problems, and then she said that not being cute IS a major problem. But I'm pretty sure babies are generally cute, so at least that's one thing I'm not too worried about.
I'm really starting to get attached, though. It's just impossible not to, really.