My Bundle Of Joy: Part Three

This is the third part of a fiction serial, in 764 words.

What followed was what I started to think of as ‘the quiet time’. I had a scan appointment to look forward to, which immediately started the debate with Olly about whether or not we wanted to know the sex of the baby, if it was obvious to the person doing the scanning. Olly couldn’t even contemplate not having a son. Someone to take to football, and buy tiny football kits for.

He was an unusual football fan, in many respects. Something of an intellectual, he looked like a nerd, and favoured a duffle-coat for attending the matches. He was in charge of all the non-fiction output for one of the most famous publishers in the country, and when he wasn’t going on about football, he usually had his head in a book. Or many books.

But he had grown up without a father, and I always believed his obsession with ‘his’ team from a young age had given him the feeling of belonging to something. He made no friends in the crowd, and didn’t socialise with any other supporters though. His being a fan was a very personal thing.

We finally agreed not to know, at least until the second scan. But I told him I thought it was just practical to know the sex these days, as people were sure to buy gifts based on gender, whether or not we wanted them or asked for them. And we would obviously be buying things for baby’s room in the new house. I also quizzed him on whether or not he would be disappointed if it turned out to be a girl. He just smiled. “Girls play football too, you know”.

Determined to never live close enough to my mum for her to be able to walk to our house, we started looking at the suburbs to the east, the opposite side to my parental home. Five minutes with our local estate agent left us reassured that he could sell our flat for the inflated asking price in the same day it went on the market. “I have a list of people wanting flats in that building, Mister Woodman. They will snatch your hand off to buy it, and no haggling”.

That meant we could find somewhere we liked the look of, knowing there would be little delay in selling. I didn’t want to end up having to rent while we looked, moving twice in the same year, so I told Olly to decide on an area, and we would choose a house there together.

Names came up next. I didn’t even have a bump showing, and everyone wanted to know what we were going to name what I still just called ‘It’, or ‘baby’. My parents had all sorts of crazy suggestions, ranging from the names of long-dead grandparents, through to some favoured by members of the Royal Family. Olly went all literary on me, suggesting names like Emile, for Zola, and Simone, after de Beauvoir.

I told him we should wait and see what sex it was, and maybe even wait until he or she was born, then see what inspired us. His mother had told him that he had been named Olver after the Swiss actor Oliver Tobias. She said she had a one-night stand with him back in the day, and thought he might be the father.

But she had put it about a bit at the time, and couldn’t be sure.

We got a good feeling in only the fourth house we looked at. It was one of those solid nineteen thirties houses, in a side street where they all looked the same. Bay windows, small garage, and a decent-sized garden at the back. Semi-detached, but even the third bedroom was a good size, as it was built over the garage. I didn’t like the small galley kitchen, but Olly was full of ideas about opening it up into the dining room, bi-fold doors onto the garden, and ending up with a nice open plan family room.

It was cheap, and cheap for a reason. The old lady who owned it had gone into a care home, and nothing much had been changed in the house since the fifties.

Work would be needed. New central heating for sure, and probably a rewiring job too. But it had marvellous parquet flooring throughout, and a stained glass sunburst in the window above the front door. We put in a cheeky offer, and were pleasantly surprised when it was accepted immediately.

Late that afternoon, we put our flat up for sale.

32 thoughts on “My Bundle Of Joy: Part Three

  1. While my daughter didn’t need to know the gender, one look at the ultrasound made it obvious that it was a little boy. LOL. I always wanted a girl, but called her George in the womb to get used to the idea that she would be a boy. Of course back then we didn’t know until the end. I,too, got ghost concerns about the house. I have been conditioned by your fiction I’m afraid.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. They didn’t have scans when I had mine so they were all a surprise…I can see why people want to know but I still think it is better to not know…an old house with possible work do maybe a skeleton behind the walls to under the floorboards…a resident ghost..let’s wait and see I’m sure a twist will come soon πŸ™‚ x

    Liked by 3 people

            1. No, I wouldn’t change it. The last episode is already in my head, as I always work back from the ending. πŸ™‚
              If people guess, right or wrong, it shows they are engaging with the story, which is very gratifying.
              Best wishes, Pete.

              Liked by 1 person

  3. Before my granddaughter Kira [Star Trek reference] was born, and the gender wasn’t known, she was referred to as “Cletus” [the fΕ“tus], a Simpsons reference. Hannah shares many characteristics of her sense of humour with me, I’m very glad to say! πŸ˜€ Cheers, Jon.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I have had friends who called their unborn baby ‘The Bump’, ‘The Monster’, and ‘The Passenger’. Others were so convinced they knew the sex, they used ‘Him’ or ‘Her’.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. (1) Growing up, I usually had my head in a book. But I was always afraid someone would slam the book shut, thereby crushing my skull. Maybe I should have read paperbacks?
    (2) “Only mature girls play with their footballs.” (excerpt from Dolly Parton’s book, “How I Entertained the Peeping Toms of Tennessee”)
    (3) Bigelow Aerospace wants to sell its inflatable space habitat to NASA for an inflated asking price. (It’s cheaper if NASA provides the air pump.)
    (4) Bad citation: “I have a list of Dutch ladies wanting clogs in that building, Mister Woodman. They don’t care for flats.”
    (5) Did you hear about the handyman who sold his apartment? The buyers snatched his hand off to buy it, and now he finds it difficult to make a living.
    (6) “I didn’t even have a bump showing.” In time, it will become a speed bump!
    (7) Emily Zola and Simon de Beauvoir. (Sex changes that didn’t happen.)
    (8) I once ran a hot dog stand on New Year’s Eve. It was a one-night stand.
    (9) Bad citation: “It was one of those solid 1930’s cardboard houses, located in a back alley. A sign read: ‘Abortions on Demand.’ It was dark back there, but we were told that in the summertime we could look forward to a sunburst every day from Noon to 12:15.”

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I would have loved to know the sex of my babies beforehand, but the nurses couldn’t tell as both were facing the wrong way. Both of my daughters-in-law didn’t want to know – they said they were looking forward to the surprise at the end!

    Liked by 2 people

All comments welcome

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.