Baby Boy Chatburn! (And how we Really feel about it)
Let me go ahead and spill the beans (er, cake) if you haven't already heard: we're having a boy!
I toyed so much with the idea of doing any kind of gender reveal event (Matty and I are decidedly not cheesy), and finally, I decided to match my untamed desire to bake a cake with the announcement of our son. Matty's dad and brother were visiting us in LA, so I made this cake for us to enjoy and we called on Matty's sis to help set up a similar situation for his mother and grandparents back in Australia. We all jumped on FaceTime and everyone cut into their cakes at the same time to reveal lots of blue!
Baking and decorating cakes used to be my absolute favorite past-time, until I became more obsessed with nutrition and found it harder and harder to place white flour or sugar in my cart. I've still got a sweet tooth, we just tend to go the way of dark chocolate or coconut cream and strawberries these days. So...this particular treat was 3 6" layers of King Author Flour Gluten-Free yellow cake mix, frosted Wholesome Organic Frosting. Not quite homemade, but still SO FUN. I hollowed out the center and filled it with a mix of blue candies from Dylan's Candy Bar (yeah, not at all healthy), then topped it with a sprinkled heart.
Guess how long that lasted between a pregnant lady and 3 grown men?
*I will devour you*
I supposed we could have live-streamed the cake cutting (yeah, no), but we had a different idea. We decided to visit an old photo-booth at the Ace Hotel in DTLA after a really lovely 2nd-anniversary date of steak and jazz on top of historic downtown building at sunset. Not at ALL romantic.
Anyway, this seemed like the perfect way for us to share the good news:
We are so thrilled! I'm feeling pretty great, despite a few bouts of sickness, random 24-headaches, and occasional side aches if I move too fast or walk too far. I think I've had it easy and I'm so thankful. But mostly I'm thankful every time I feel him move or hiccup and know that he's growing strong.
Matty and I have had several conversations about how we want to raise our son but I think it's most easily summarized like this:
One night, after we'd kissed goodnight and just as I was drifting off to sleep, I rolled over and whispered in a sleepy haze: "I think I know why we're having a boy."
"Because the world needs more men like you." And then I swiftly fell asleep, as I do these days.
That stuck with my husband. More than I expected, if I'm honest. See, Matty and I have had many chats about what it's like to be a woman right now. I've shared with him what it feels like to be catcalled or how I learned from a "health" magazine at a very young age that I should start to worry about how fat my arms were. He's seen me be disrespected in the workplace and watched how easily my value could be diminished. We both desire an equal playing field for women, a world where they can love their bodies and their minds. Where respect, equal pay, and opportunity abound at the same rate as men.
It would be easy, if we were having a girl, to talk about how she's going to change the world. How her future is OUR future. How she'll be president, or a CEO, or an artist one day.
The thing is, I want all of that for my son, too. Not at her expense, of course, and not because he'll grow into a man with established rights. But how can I not wish the world for my child?
I didn't need Matty in order to feel empowered, worthy, or beautiful, but I'm not complaining that he does make me feel that way. I'm not me without him. Besides how he loves me, Matty has a wild heart for the true man. If you've seen his photography, then you know. His work captures a heritage of men who lead with virtue, embrace their own grit and challenges, admit to fault, and rise above it. There is no "men will be men" or "men are the worst" here. There is a generation of men who are breaking that cliché: they are kind + vulnerable, but also strong + brave. They are necessary to our society. They love their women. They will take a knife for their families. They lead with a humble heart and they take on life as an adventure.
My husband is one of these men, and this is exactly what I wish for my son. Every opportunity to continue making the world better just as his father, grandfathers, and great-grandfathers before him.