Updated: Jun 6, 2020
20th January 2020 - Leicester
We were in the NHS now! Milestone. I felt... ‘normal’. At the 12 week scan we took no chances and Faye said straight away ‘David’s the father’ and explained the surrogacy. It felt good when the nurse addressed me. When I saw Bob on the screen drinking the amniotic fluid, wiggling and back flipping I did indeed think I had won the lottery, and then immediately felt I wasn’t worthy of it. I did desperately want to be a good boy for so much of my life, so afraid of getting in trouble, of being told off, of being poorly thought if I went against the rules. But now I wanted to teach 12 week old Bob to be a rebel, to bend the rules, to live without fear. To wiggle and keep on wiggling. Bob arched its back and bounced up into the black.
Moment of hilarity when Faye was called for a blood test in the crowded waiting room after the scan and looked at both Lee and I and then the nurse and said ‘can I bring my..’. ....hesitating, perhaps not wanting to go into detail.. trying to find the right term ‘can I bring my .... ‘partners.’ There was a stunned silence as everyone looked to the three of us trying to work it out. Then we all burst out laughing, the rest of the waiting room too followed suite...like a collective sigh of relief.
We had another scan that day (long story involving a film crew), at a private clinic, a strange repeat of the NHS scan, but this time with the boys and some fantastic 4D images. I kept saying to myself as I put my hand on Faye’s belly and looked at Babba Bob. "I made that. I made that."
I thought that being gay would make me childless forever. If I could have taken a pill to change, that I would have. For when it came to wanting to be a father I had always felt trapped by own physiological responses to men (not all men!) as I could never fall in love with a woman to form a family. Today I finally felt like I blasted those chains away. The 12 week scan confirmed I could be me, authentically me (and be happy) and still be a Dad. I didn’t need to be straight to be a dad. I didn’t need to wish I was anything other than David.
I was desperate to know the gender. We poured over the scan pictures during a Mexican dinner, trying to discern if the nub was a shadow, a knee, a trick of the light. Because I was desperate to give 'it' a name. To give 'it' a punchier pronoun. Faye and I thought 'boy' straight away - more or less. But then over the weeks people wavered. And then Lee was convinced it was a girl. He sung to her wonderful incantations with Vinny and Eugene. Faye and I bandied around percentages 80% sure, then 65%, sure it was a boy. I drew up lists of boys and girls names. I avoided questions from people when they asked what I wanted, or tried to evade the question by talking about the health of the baby.
The truth was I wanted everything. Girl, boy, 3 girls, 4 boys, 6 girls 7 boys. Yes intersex, trans, gender fluid, whatever and whenever. And no, gender to me doesn’t matter. But yes, it changes everything. It was simultaneously the most important and least important thing of all. At some point I forcefully stopped trying to predict it.
If it was baby and I could take it home and say it was mine, it literally didn’t really matter.