My students ask all the time how pregnant I am and my reply is: "100%". This belly proves it!!! Being pregnant is one of the most incredible experiences. Some of my favorite parts are feeling Bandon move or seeing his hand or foot slide across my belly. I don't know that I have had any extremely strange cravings, but I have been polishing off a bag of mini sweet peppers from Costco each week and eat at least an apple every day. I also have been consuming water lately like a camel. Being pregnant isn't easy for me: I had morning sickness for about four months with this baby, haven't slept in about six months now, and get charlie horses in the middle of the night. However, knowing that there is a precious baby being nurtured inside of my tummy somehow makes it all worth it. It is amazing to think that the end result of all this discomfort will be a tiny, precious little baby and when I think of all the many elements that come together to make this possible, it reaffirms my belief in God and all of the many miracles that He creates.
I first knew that I was pregnant after going camping with my parents at Castle Rock campground - the nausea hit me like a wave. I was nervous about taking a pregnancy test, because we had been trying for a while and they all were coming up negative, but this one was positive. I was so excited to tell Justin. I poured him a glass of wine and myself a cup of water and announced that we needed to celebrate, but that I would have to raise a toast with just water, because I was expecting. Since then, Justin has been an amazing support. From helping to get the baby's nursery ready to lifting boxes down from the attic. He makes breakfast for me every morning before I head to work, pulls my car out of the garage and warms it up, he takes Thayer to swim class, and has listened as patiently as possible to all of my gripes. Having Bandon is like the icing on the cake that is our family and we are so excited to meet him.
People always ask if Thayer is excited to be a big brother. I think it took him a long time to realize that there was a baby inside of my belly - but he's on-board now. He actually thinks that he has a baby in his belly as well and that it will come out in "5 minutes". The baby in his belly is named Mishka - just like Mamma's baby. Although lately he has finally begun to refer to the baby as brother Bandon. He talks to his brother and is excited to teach him to play blocks when he arrives - I haven't had the heart to tell him that he will most likely have a two year wait, even after the arrival, for that to happen. I know that Thayer will be a great bigger brother and an excellent helper for me.
It's strange to think that in just a little under two months our lives are going to be altered forever. Thayer is going to get the sibling that I have always dreamed of for him. Annie and Holly are not only my sisters, but my best friends as well and I feel overwhelmed with joy to be giving Thayer a sibling that he may some day have a similar bond with. Justin and I both are excited to have a baby again. A tiny baby to nurture and cuddle and kiss as much as we want. Thayer is over getting loved on and has never been much for cuddling, so it will be amazing to have an infant that wants nothing more than to be held and loved all day.
The last time that I was pregnant was even more difficult than this time and when I first found out that I was pregnant, I made a pact with myself to enjoy it a bit here and there. This maternity shoot was one of the more enjoyable activities that I have focused around this pregnancy. I am excited to have these pictures as a reminder of this era in my life. Our photographer, Kailey Shakespear, was amazing and really made me feel beautiful.