Baby #2

I am so happy to finally be sharing this life-changing news with you all! Anel and I are expecting our second baby in April 2021. Out of all the craziness of this year, getting pregnant has given us something to stay positive for and to look forward to. We are over the moon excited to be growing and completing our family!

I’m 4 months (16 weeks) pregnant which means that I’ve been hiding this little secret for 3 months now. That has been quite the challenge. I’ll share all of the gritty details of my first trimester in tomorrow’s blog post (spoiler alert: it wasn’t cute), but today I’ll talk about our journey to this pregnancy, how we found out, and Amalia’s reaction.

Let’s start in the summer…

It was Saturday, August 15th, and the first day of Amalia’s potty training. Our plan was to take off her diapers that morning and just go for it. My period was also due that day. We had been trying to get pregnant for a year so I had called a fertility clinic the day before to make an appointment. The day before! But I decided to take a test just to rule out the pregnancy that month. I knew if I didn’t, I’d be thinking about it all day.

I thought that there was no way it was possible because I had spotted a few days before which always happens when I get my period and never happens when I get pregnant (remember this is my 4th pregnancy counting the two miscarriages).

As I was putting the top back on the test, I watched two very very bright pink lines pop up immediately. It didn’t take the 5 minutes that it usually does. The result was so fast that I figured it was a flaw in the test. So I pulled out the digital test that I’d been saving as a backup (those things aren’t cheap!). Sure enough, that one said Pregnant in big bold letters.

My hands started shaking and I could hear my heart beating in my ears but I still didn’t fully believe it so I sprinted down the stairs to show Anel. Both of us were in total shock because, as I said, we had thought that month was a wash. That whole day, we would look at each other and ask if it was really happening over and over.  Luckily we were able to distract ourselves with potty training for much of the day. It took about a week for the reality to really settle in.

And settle in it did. My morning sickness started earlier than last time, at 5.5 weeks, and it was fast and furious. That mixed with the quick double lines on my test had us thinking it could be twins. Because of my history of miscarriage and the fact that I’m 35, my doctor gave me a sonogram at just over 6 weeks to confirm the healthy pregnancy… and the fact that there is only one baby in there.

10 weeks later and I’m happy to report that the (one!) baby is still healthy and growing despite a few scares (more on that tomorrow). And the sickness from my first trimester has mostly passed. I’m now feeling healthy, strong, excited… and always a little tired. But a happy tired.

So how did we get here? Let’s jump back again to September 2019 (remember good ole’ days?).

We had just moved into our new house, Amalia was newly two years old, and we finally felt ready to try for our second baby. Something about settling into our forever space made us want to grow our family.

We tried from September-March with no success. When COVID hit, we decided to take April off because I was so scared at the time about the virus and what was going on in the world. Once we realized that it was here to stay for the foreseeable future, we decided we didn’t want to put our lives on hold indefinitely.

As time went on I got more and more anxious about the age difference between Amalia and our next child but tried to stay calm about that as much as possible. In March, my sister got pregnant with my niece (she’s due in December) so that helped take my mind off of my own struggles. I was just so happy for her! And now I’m even happier because our babies will be 4 months apart in age. Being pregnant at the same time as she is has been SO much fun.

Throughout the whole process, I tried many of the things that I did to get pregnant with Amalia: I took prenatal vitamins, beef liver supplements, cod liver oil, drank tons of bone broth, tried to drink less alcohol (which proved difficult during COVID) and got acupuncture whenever I could. In July, I finally decided to try giving up gluten because it worked the first time around. And that was when we conceived. Anecdotally, giving up gluten 100% has helped me get pregnant twice now. Go figure.

As a funny side story, in March I had a call with the psychic who I speak to once a year. He told me that I would get pregnant in August but at the time that felt so far off, I thought he must be wrong (for the first time ever). But per usual, he was right!

The hardest part of keeping our secret was not telling Amalia. I was so so sick for many weeks and couldn’t be my usual self with her.  But I didn’t want to tell her in case of another loss. I didn’t want her to have to go through that too. We waited until I hit 12 weeks then Anel and I told her together. We were expecting a huge reaction but she wasn’t too excited at first which made us nervous.

A few hours later, she started asking a ton of logistical questions like where will the baby sleep? Can I sit next to the baby in the car? Where will the baby take a bath? Can I help change diapers?

She has since warmed up to the idea and likes to hug and kiss “her baby” by snuggling with my tummy every night before bed which is very sweet. Every few days she asks if her baby is coming out yet. I think it’s going to be a long 6 months for all of us!

She also decided that we will name it Rainbow… so there’s that.

We are all beyond excited for this next chapter in our lives! Anel and I look forward to sharing more about this pregnancy and our plans for the future in the coming weeks and months. Thank you so much for taking this journey with us.

Photo by Julia Dags.

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  1. Ohmygoodness, came over from your Stories expecting to see a Sustainability Challenge _ instead got this post.

    BEST NEWS EVER!!!

    So thrilled for you and your little brood. And I am all for the name Rainbow. You can call her (or him) Bo for short, like Tracee Ellis Ross’ character on Blackish.

    HORRAY!!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Hahahah I love it! Little ‘Bo!

      11.8.20 · Reply
  2. Alexandra Pappas said:

    Congratulations! So happy to read this. I’m due with my second in the beginning of January and the things that my 3yo says about the baby are hilarious!

    11.2.20 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Congratulations!!! Such an exciting time for us both.

      11.8.20 · Reply
  3. Kerin said:

    Congrats! So happy for you ❤️

    11.2.20 · Reply
  4. Leala said:

    Congratulations!! So happy for you!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  5. Kimberly said:

    Congrats!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  6. Jen said:

    Many congratulations! It is great to see some pure joy and happiness come from 202o!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  7. Francesca said:

    Congratulations!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  8. Cate said:

    SO, so happy for you!!! Congratulations! Gorgeous photos…you are glowing xo

    11.2.20 · Reply
  9. Cat said:

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! What amazing news!! So happy for you and your family.

    11.2.20 · Reply
  10. Ashley said:

    So incredibly happy for your family!! Congratulations!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  11. Hester Martin said:

    Congrats on your baby news!! I have had a feeling you might be preggo!! Amalia will make such a great big sister! My second daughter was born in April and my first daughter was born in October too!!

    Much love and many blessings to u all as you add to your family!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  12. Eva Amurri said:

    Wooot woooot!!! Can’t wait can’t wait!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  13. Caroline said:

    Ahh congrats, so exciting!!! Any chance that you’ll share who you psychic is?? Or even where to find a reputable one??
    Thanks!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  14. Britta said:

    Oh, what a sweet blessing to look forward to. Congratulations!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  15. Amanda said:

    So incredibly happy for you and your family! Congrats!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  16. Mackenzis said:

    Oh my goodness! Congratulations! This was such sweet news to open my feed to tonight! Congratulations to you and your sweet little family – so, so happy for you guys

    11.2.20 · Reply
  17. Nicole said:

    Congratulations! I am pregnant as well with my second after two previous miscarriages before my first

    11.2.20 · Reply
  18. I’m so thrilled for your family!!! Congratulations! You’ve been such a light for me during my first pregnancy (I’m 19 weeks today) and I look forward to watching your journey unfold, knowing our babies are so close in age! Cheers, you guys! So happy for you!

    11.2.20 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Congratulations to you as well! xx

      11.8.20 · Reply
  19. Betsy J said:

    Congratulations So happy for you and your beautiful family

    11.2.20 · Reply
  20. Jaime said:

    Congrats Julia!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  21. annette said:

    Congratulations! But I am with Amalia on the “Rainbow” name!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  22. Danielle said:

    Congratulations!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  23. Lauren said:

    Congratulations!! I just had my second in July, my first is almost 3.5 years old. It’s a great age difference and the 3.5 yo ends up helping and being very attentive when she wants to be! Enjoy all the moments!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Excited for that! She’s SO excited to help. She’s going to be such a little mommy 🙂

      11.8.20 · Reply
  24. Meg said:

    Oh Julia, I’m so happy for you. I’m a couple of weeks behind you with my second (14 weeks) and definitely feel you on the tired…always a little tired!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  25. Kristen said:

    Beyond happy for you. Thank goodness to have something happy in all of this crazy! I had my second baby in may, and it’s been truly a blessing to have such a light in our life through this dark year, and you will have that too.

    Also, can I please have the name of your psychic?! I would LOVE to talk to someone good

    11.2.20 · Reply
  26. Krystal said:

    Such exciting news!! Congratulations!! I’d love to hear more about your psychic. How did you find one you could trust?

    11.2.20 · Reply
  27. Ellen said:

    Congrats!!

    11.2.20 · Reply
  28. Ayesha said:

    Congratulations you guys I know Amalia would make a wonderful big sister..!! And I love the name..!!! You guys can call him/her “Beau” for short..but omg I’m so thrilled for you guys..!! Sending for much love ❤️

    11.3.20 · Reply
  29. Sharon said:

    Congratulations, how exciting! Has your doctor given you any particular advice or safety guidance regarding pregnancy during covid? I had my annual exam last month and mine actually explicitly told me not to get pregnant until there is a vaccine.

    11.3.20 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      He has asked me to be careful and follow the CDC guidelines which I have! I recommend watching Shiva Ghofrani’s Instagram Reels on this topic. It might put your mind at ease a bit: https://www.instagram.com/biglovefiercejuju/

      11.8.20 · Reply
  30. Christina said:

    Congratulations! How long were you off gluten total?

    11.3.20 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      About 2 months total? Maybe a week less.

      11.8.20 · Reply
  31. This is so awesome and oddly enough I thought about it over the weekend to myself that if I wondered if you wanted a second child! Crazy! So happy for you and your growing family to have this journey again!

    11.3.20 · Reply
  32. Alex said:

    Hi Julia! Congratulations!! My heart is so happy for you and your family! My story is so similar to yours.. so I’ve enjoyed reading your posts. It’s taking me a bit longer than I’d like to grow my family. I’m intrigued by the gluten.. did you come across any research that lead you to that? I’m definitely going to give it a try.

    11.3.20 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Yes! My friend Aimee Raupp is a fertility specialist and wrote a book (called Yes You Can Get Pregnant) and talks a lot about the research behind it. I highly recommend the book!

      11.8.20 · Reply
  33. Such a beautiful post! SO happy for you both. Congratulations!

    11.3.20 · Reply
  34. sarah Dunfee said:

    So happy for you!!! I read all about your 1st pregnancy hardships which I also had 3 losses before my rainbow baby after doing the things you did I had my sweet Savannah… She is a bone broth non gluten miracle all the way!!! Can’t wait to watch your beautiful family grow!! XOXO

    11.3.20 · Reply
  35. Jess K said:

    So so so happy for your growing family !!!!!! Congrats!

    11.3.20 · Reply
  36. Joyce said:

    Huge congrats!!!! And these photos are precious. 🙂

    11.3.20 · Reply
  37. Em said:

    So exciting! I had the same experience regarding calling fertility specialists, only to find out two weeks later I was pregnant. I had thought for sure after 9 months of trying we needed help, especially since we had two miscarriages before that but both times got pregnant really quickly. It is true what they say, when you stop “trying” it happens!

    11.3.20 · Reply
  38. Ellie said:

    Congrats!!! I laughed when I saw Amalia wants to name the baby “Rainbow”. In high school I babysat a family and the 4 year old wanted to name his baby sister to be “Lemonada” hahaha. Still makes me laugh!

    Also, my friend’s parents asked her what she wanted to name her baby brother and she said Prince Eric (from The Little Mermaid) and they actually named him Eric lol.

    Hope that made you smile on this (stressful) Election Day <3

    11.3.20 · Reply
  39. Liz said:

    Huge congrats – so happy for you and your family!! This may be a weird question but could you share more about the psychic, and whether he’s taking new clients?

    11.3.20 · Reply
  40. Allison said:

    Just thrilled for YOU, Anel and Amalia. Wonderful, happy news. Yay!

    11.4.20 · Reply
  41. Zania said:

    Congratulations! 🙂

    11.4.20 · Reply
  42. Katie said:

    Congratulations! Such wonderful joyful news!!

    11.6.20 · Reply
  43. betsy said:

    I am so happy for you! I’ve had to quit social media for my mental health through this election period so was glad to see this in my inbox! Amalia will be the best big sister; my daughter is 3.5 years older than my son and she is AMAZING with him! Congratulations!

    11.6.20 · Reply
  44. Chelsea said:

    Congrats! So happy for you!

    11.6.20 · Reply
  45. Michelle said:

    Congratulations! The psychic and gluten free don’t seem like coincidence to me. Fascinating! Amalia will be the best big sister! Best wishes further potty training and keeping up with her while pregnant. We mamas of 2+ kiddos are here with you! XOXO and hugs to Baby Bo (loving the trending nickname)

    11.8.20 · Reply
  46. Erica said:

    So excited you are having a boy! I have a 4 year old girl abs a one year old boy! It’s perfect . Such a joy getting to experience both. You said you have a physic? Would you mind sharing? Been looking for one but not sure how to trust whose real abs not

    11.9.20 · Reply