And in that moment, we realised our lives had changed forever.
Macca and I tied the knot just over a year ago. Ours was one of the many Covid-delayed weddings. We’d spent a year wondering if our special day would ever come. We breathed a sigh of relief when we discovered our date fell three weeks after wedding restrictions lifted! We celebrated at Stanlake Park’s beautiful vineyards, surrounded by 100 of our closest friends and family.
The honeymoon followed in February this year. This involved another little delay and a rejig of ideas after it turned out all of the countries in our Plan A were still firmly closed. It turned out to be a pretty epic Plan B though!
We headed off on an adventurous, wildlife-filled exploration of Sri Lanka, combined with some luxurious R&R in The Maldives. We’d never felt like a truly traditional couple, yet we seemed to be working our way through a few of the classic life stages!
The last few years have been pretty challenging to say the least. We mourned the loss of a year of travel when the world shut down. Before 2020, we’d reached new heights with our careers. In 2021, when things started to reopen, we felt like we’d gone back a few stages. It was like being stripped of a promotion at work. The opportunities were thin on the ground and tourism campaign budgets were low or non-existent. It was hard to know what the next few years would hold.
Flash forwards a year, to a family holiday in Menorca, and we realised another life-changing moment might be upon us.
What’s that you ask?
Well, err, probably the biggest and most exciting of the lot!
We’d only been trying for a few months, but after hearing a lot of stories from friends and relatives who had struggled to conceive, we didn’t feel it was likely it’d happen quickly for us.
As our Balearic holiday ticked on, I started to notice a few things. I eased off the gin and created some deceptive ‘spritzes’! I wondered if the family would notice that I wasn’t reaching for the wine at dinner! After all, it was pretty uncharacteristic for me, especially on holiday!
The charade continued until we touched down in London and reached our flat. As we opened the door, I knew that within the next 30 mins we’d find out if our lives were about to change forever.
I was excited, nervous, anxious, jittery. A clichéd bundle of emotions.
I disappeared to the bathroom and did the glam little test. A minute passed and Macca hammered on the door, ‘let me in!’ We stood there together in silence, watching the test dissolve. Would there be one line or two? For Covid two lines was bad, for babies it was good!
Then the screams! The sound was unfamiliar to me, yet it seemed to be coming out of my mouth! We hugged, kissed, shed a few tears and then… bizarrely carried on with our evening. We unpacked, sorted out the house, and settled down for an evening in front of the TV.
But who were we kidding! Overnight everything started to sink in. I barely slept, and after several restless hours reached for my phone. I Googled and Googled and Googled. Week by week symptoms, labour, pictures of bumps, scans. It all seemed alien to me.
I’m not one of those girls who has spent her whole life dreaming of being a mother. I hoped to create a fun life, have a career I enjoyed, lots of lovely friends around me and plenty of time with my family. But, I’ve known for several years (way before meeting Macca) that I would love to have children in the future.
I think regardless of how you feel, news like this is always going to feel overwhelming. The norms that you know are shaken upside-down. The life you know is about to change. I definitely had a few little meltdowns the day after we found out, but as the news sank in, I started to realise just how amazing it all was.
I started to look forward to this new life… a fuller life, a very different life!
We went for our first scan a few weeks ago. I don’t know if other mums or mums-to-be will remember this moment, but it really is a bizarre experience. It’s almost out of body… except it’s happening right there inside you!
When you find out you’re pregnant in England, you self-refer yourself to the nearest hospital. The first appointment usually takes place at around 8 weeks. By this time, you’ve lived with the news for a month or so, and probably experienced all sorts of symptoms. And yet, despite having nausea for a couple of months, it still didn’t quite feel real that we were going to have our own little baby!
I felt like that until the first scan. By 12 weeks I wasn’t showing at all. Yet, the second the sonographer placed the ultrasound device on my tummy, there it was! The shape of a baby right there on the screen. Macca and I reached for each other’s hands, both welling up as we took in what we were seeing. Our first view of the little human we’d created.
Now it felt real! The emotions flowed. We clutched the black and white images as we left the hospital, wanting to keep them close.
We’ve continued working and travelling as usual, with several travel campaigns both in the UK and abroad.
Since telling close friends and family, there have been a lot of questions. You know, are you going to name your child after a place you’ve travelled to? Probably not! Will they be really short and really hairy? Err, yes probably!! And what the hell will we do about our jobs? I guess that’s the toughest question for us, and one we don’t have an answer to just yet. However, travel is in our veins and we very much hope that’ll pass on to our little one too. We’re optimistic we’ll be off on some fun adventures next year, they’ll just be a slightly different kind.
Until then, we’re planning a really exciting autumn and winter of travels. We want to make the most of our time as a two, before the next adventure kicks off in spring 2023.
Thank you for reading this post. It’s been a while since I shared personal news but this blog is an extension of me, and it feels right this news has a place right here. As ever, your support means a lot to both of us. I’ve loved how many people have followed me for years, as I’ve moved through several life phases, and no doubt you have too. I hope you’ll stick around for the next one!