The Birth of my Second Child: How My Life Became Complete & I Stopped Wishing For a Daughter

I always pictured myself with a daughter. I didn’t just hope for a daughter one day, I flat out assumed I would have one. We would play dress up and do our hair and nails and go shopping together. She would ask my advice on fashion and boys and life and I would teach her everything from how to walk in heels to how to become a strong independent woman.


When I got pregnant the first time, of course I thought it was a girl, my mini-me, my future BFF. Well, that magical 20 week appointment came and I found out I was having a boy. I felt a slight twinge of disappointment but so far he was developing perfectly, and that’s all that really mattered. I was having a sweet baby boy!

The second time I got pregnant, I knew it was a girl. I just had that “mommy intuition”. Not to mention, every old wives’ tale pointed to girl, the Chinese Gender chart predicted a girl, and when my OBGYN first heard the heartbeat, she gave me a playful little smile and said “my guess is a GIRL!” She was a doctor, she had to be right! Suddenly my thoughts were flooded with pink and glitter and those cute little headbands with the flowers! I was going to get my daughter!


This pregnancy I was of “advanced maternal age” (love that term) so I was eligible for a DNA test early in the pregnancy that would be able to detect certain chromosomal abnormalities. The test could also determine gender. I was at work when I got the call. I answered my cell phone, heart pounding in my ears. The results were in and the baby did not have the disorders for which they tested. (Phew!) Did I want to know the sex? “Yes!” I replied breathlessly. “Congratulations Mrs. Hendrickson, you’re having…….a BOY!” My smile froze. And just like that, my life as I had always pictured it screeched to a halt and took a turn in another direction.

This was my final pregnancy. And I would never have a daughter.

I tried to dismiss the feelings of sadness but they were undeniable and real. Inevitably my practical side crept up and scolded me: “Geez Jess, just be thankful your baby is healthy. Don’t be so selfish”. I was happy he was healthy. Of course I was. But what about those mother/daughter mani and pedi dates I envisioned? To whom would I impart my wisdom on proper mascara application??

Fast forward about 7 months and I met the second love of my life: my perfect, healthy little baby boy. When I got home from the hospital, I held both of my boys together for the first time. At that moment I experienced such an overwhelming, euphoric feeling of unconditional love that I knew this is exactly how my life was meant to turn out.

I felt COMPLETE in a way I never had before.

So, thank you, you sweet little human being for coming into my life and completing my family. You are perfect. And everything in the universe has fallen into place with your birth.


And so my dear non-existent daughter, we won’t get to play Princesses but I have trucks to play with and bugs to catch. I have soccer balls to kick around and mud to jump in. I have ties to tie and forts to build. I have two amazing little boys to bring up in this world that doesn’t always turn out how you plan, but always turns out how it is meant to.

16 thoughts on “The Birth of my Second Child: How My Life Became Complete & I Stopped Wishing For a Daughter

  1. One of my favorite subjects, as the mother of 3 boys, aunt to five nephews and grandmother of one boy. Women can be VERY mean to other women re: this, and that is just inexcusable. Even my own mother offered her theory that having only boys makes women “masculine.” SERIOUSLY? Well, she had a daughter but we had nothing in common and never got along. Forget the mani/pedis and the shopping — we were too busy fighting. No guarantees at all that a daughter will be your BFF. And it turns out you can have your mini-me anyway, even with your sons! Jennifer is right — now I have my girls (DILs) and I didn’t even have to raise them. The opportunity to raise caring, compassionate, emotion-expressing, women-respecting men was an honor.

    1. Thank you so much for this comment and for the different perspective – I just assumed my daughter would be my BFF, but you’re right, there is no guarantee! Thanks 🙂

  2. You will get the best of both worlds as you raise your boys, to become the kind of men, that will bring a special daughter in law into your life.

  3. I too can relate.
    I dreamed of a little girl.

    About two weeks before my ultrasound I had a breakdown. I cried one day. All day. First time in my life I had NO control over something.

    Ultrasound confirmed my suspicion. Boy.

    Fast forward – my 5 year old son is my best pal. I couldn’t imagine life any other way.

    1. Jeannie, I totally get that feeling when you have no control over something. I hate it! haha! And, yep, may boys are my best pals too, aren’t boys just awesome? 🙂

  4. I still mourn the fact that I won’t have a daughter. I love my two boys to pieces but I really did want a girl also.

  5. Thanks for this! I’m pregnant with my third and final baby, a third boy. I know I had to take a moment/day to simply mourn the fact that I would never experience the mother daughter relationship and then I got excited. Thanks for helping me feel normal, because I felt like such an ungrateful jerk at the time.

    1. Louise, I know what you mean!! I felt like an ungrateful jerk too! And I felt weird mourning someone that never even existed, but I did! I think it’s a very natural (and normal!) response.

  6. LOVE this, Jessica! I was absolutely POSITIVE my 3rd baby was a girl, until HE came out! And even as I mourned my daughter, I celebrated him. Three years later I can’t imagine it any other way ~ I’m such a lucky mama of three incredible boys. And the littlest one is wearing blue polish on his toenails even as we speak. 😉

    1. Yes Kate! I agree completely. You said it perfectly – I mourned the idea of a daughter but celebrated my son. (and blue nail polish is awesome!)

  7. One of the best mommies out there! Love you and the boys! But that whole “final pregnancy” thing.. Not the biggest fan 😉 lol

  8. Love this Jess! Plus – who says you can’t do mani/pedi’s with your boys?? Resisting gender norms is another way to still do those kinds of activities 🙂

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