It’s been a while since I’ve shared some personal news, so here’s a happy update from the Garden Betty family: We’re growing by one this fall!
Will and I are thrilled to be welcoming a baby girl in September, and Gemma’s beyond ecstatic and babbling daily about her soon-to-be sister — how she’s going to feed her, change her diaper, and tuck her in the crib. A real live doll for her to take care of! The sweetness of it all just makes my heart explode.
(If you walk into our house at any given moment, there’s no less than half a dozen dolls and stuffed animals covered in blankets and carefully paired with their own little loveys and bottles.)
Here’s a cute story that I replay over and over in my head, have written down in my baby journal, and hope is permanently emblazoned in my mom brain because I JUST. CAN’T. EVEN:
Nineteen weeks into the pregnancy, we had our anatomy ultrasound — the important one where all the major organs are measured and analyzed, and lots of images are taken. (We were able to find out the sex of the baby early on with a simple blood test. Oh my goodness, the world we live in these days… the technology available to pregnant women is astounding.)
Gemma, who had just turned three, was at the ultrasound appointment with us. She was curious about the strange man moving a wand all over mama’s tummy, so he kindly printed a couple of pictures for her to keep at the end of the scan.
As we were leaving the radiology building (general radiology, which meant most of the other patients were getting non-pregnancy ultrasounds), Gemma immediately walked up to each and every person in the lobby — including all the ladies at the front desk, the check-in person, even the new patients who were just walking in — proudly held up her pictures with a huge smile, and exclaimed, “Look! This is my baby sister!”
Each and every person, friends — more than a dozen strangers sitting in the waiting room, minding their own business and reading magazines, waiting to be called in. She circled the entire room and had to share her pictures with these unsuspecting people who were so wonderful to engage with her and ask her questions. (Yes, it took us a very long time to leave, haha.)
The whole scene was heart-meltingly beautiful, and I cherish this memory because it gives me a glimpse into what a great big sister Gemma will be. Going through pregnancy with an older toddler who’s more aware of family relationships, yet still so innocent in understanding “how it all works” is a really special experience. We’ve had so many laughs at the questions she comes up with!
I had mentioned in my New Year post a few months ago that the beginning of the year was pretty mellow for me — and that was because I slept through most of it. My hormones were totally, utterly the boss of me during the first trimester, and though I was fortunate to not experience morning sickness, the massive fatigue had me horizontal for up to 14 hours a day.
(Gemma and I played lots of “doctor and patient” games in that period. I remember waking up from an impromptu nap on the couch once, and my arms were covered in Band-Aids!)
Despite that, I think I’m one of the lucky ones. All is well, and even easy. I’ve had no concerns or complications, and all of our tests and scans have come back normal (despite this being a “geriatric pregnancy” — er, advanced maternal age, as they call it now).
But pregnancy has also been harder this time around because my body got the memo that I was pregnant instantly, and physically, it’s feeling like I’ve been in my third trimester for the last two months! (Yet we’re only five months along… yikes.)
Nevertheless, I’m feeling great now and trying to stay as active as possible. I’m planning to finish the ski season (which ends in a couple of weeks here) and hopefully get in a bit of (smooth, easy, mellow!) mountain biking this summer before my belly gets in the way too much. (If you’re pregnant or thinking of getting pregnant, you don’t always have to give up the adventures you love.)
Here’s baby number two and I enjoying first tracks on Mount Bachelor on one of the most perfect bluebird powder days last month!
It’s exciting and nerve-wracking to think of how much our lives will change in just a few short months, but in a way, Will and I almost feel like we got off easy. The timing and spacing feels perfect for us (pregnant in the summer, when I can live in muumuus, and a kid who’s fully potty trained and semi-independent, so we’ve at least got some worries out of the way).
With another girl coming, we have almost everything we need in terms of baby essentials, clothes, even outdoor stuff. (Hooray for getting a second round out of our adorable mini snowboard gear!)
We know what to expect and how to “do” girl already, and we can’t wait for our daughters to be the best of friends. I get a huge, warm rush all over when I think about our family being complete this fall, and being able to enjoy the newborn, infant, and toddler stages all over again (stages that I definitely miss with Gemma as she gets older).
I’ve watched Will be the most nurturing, present, active, and rad dad these last three years, and I know I’ll burst into a million mushy pieces seeing him with two little girls in his arms soon.
Two! Two mini rippers charging the mountains with us, two (more) adventure partners on this wild journey of life, two curious helpers tending our gardens and raising the chickens, and two thoughtful, kind, brave young girls making us immensely proud.
If it isn’t obvious by now, we have absolutely loved this parenting thing and are so grateful to get to do it again.
See you in September, Little Bean!