We love celebrating expecting mamas! We love hearing their stories and focusing on the excitement, anticipation and "realness" of pregnancy. Meet Kaley and hear about her current pregnancy journey...
Which pregnancy is this?
This is my 3rd pregnancy. Sadly, my first pregnancy ended in miscarriage and after a very tough 2014, we welcomed our rainbow baby, Chloe, in November 2015.
Did you always want this number of children?
I never really thought about it. I’m the eldest of 4, and I love having a bigger family, but when it came to the family I’m creating, I didn’t really think about it too much. I was so focused on my career before this season of motherhood. As soon as we decided to have one and we lost it, I think I was just thankful to have the opportunity to get one baby to full term. I was honestly on the fence about whether or not I wanted another baby, but I think that was mostly from fear. I knew deep down that our family wasn’t complete and that there was another sweet baby ready to be ours. It took Chloe getting to two years old for me to finally say that I was ready.
Did you find out the gender? Why/Why not?
OMG yes! Haha. I’m such a dreamer and a planner that it’s been important to me to find out the gender for both my girls. It’s hard to explain, but aside from planning the nursery and doing all the fun baby prep things, it helps me to prepare myself emotionally for the exciting change I’m about to experience as a mom and we’re going to experience as a family unit.
How did you tell your husband you were pregnant?
I had just gotten back home from a trip with Chloe to Florida to visit my family. I was feeling way more tired than normal and decided to take a test the next morning. It popped up positive almost immediately (I swear it was before the control line even appeared!). I was so shocked that I called my husband into the bathroom and showed him the news because I was speechless. We struggled getting pregnant with Chloe so I think I was in shock that we were actually able to get pregnant naturally. We actually had a surprise snowstorm that morning and my husband was stuck at home so we had a fun family day celebrating the news.
Any cravings this pregnancy?
It’s the strangest thing, but for this pregnancy and my pregnancy with Chloe, I’ve been craving loaded baked potatoes and watermelon. And I normally have a pretty big sweet tooth, but I haven’t craved anything too sweet this go-round.
What’s different about this pregnancy?
I was working full time when I was pregnant with Chloe. After a year of working full time and momming, I decided to take some time off. I think work distracted me from feeling a lot of the symptoms, especially early on. Now that I’m at home, I have more awareness of how I’m feeling, and it’s made it a little harder. Having an energetic toddler to chase after also makes this pregnancy different. I feel like like it’s flying by!
What surprised you about pregnancy?
How much it changes you. I knew it would, but I didn’t realize how much it would until I went through it, especially having experienced a loss. It makes you appreciate how miraculous this whole experience really is, and it gives you a new perspective that allows you to reevaluate your life and see what truly matters.
What are your hopes for this child?
For both of my children, I hope they grow up feeling safe and loved with a strong sense of belonging so that they can feel supported to be whoever they are here to be. I really want my children to know how much I believe in them, but mostly I want them to believe in themselves so that they can accomplish whatever they’re meant to here.
Did you have a “must have” product during this pregnancy?
Essential oils are all the rage right now, and after months of fighting it I’ve finally joined the bandwagon. I can diffuse different oils to match my mood (or to help me change it!). Other than that, I can’t survive without my morning coffee. Keeping up with an energetic toddler who rarely naps while feeling more tired than I’ve ever felt before, requires that extra kick of caffeine in the morning.
Finally, what’s one piece of advice you would give other pregnant women?
One of the biggest things I wish I would have done when I was pregnant before this one is work on taking care of myself more. I didn’t really have a strong self-care practice before I had Chloe. My pregnancy was focused so much on preparing things for the baby, and I didn’t give myself much space and time to focus on preparing myself emotionally for the biggest transitions I’ve ever experienced.
Clothes by La Belle Bump
Photos by Mary Hannah Harte Photography, LLC
More about Kaley:
Kaley Decker worked in the advertising industry for 10 years. After having her first daughter, Chloe, she decided to take some away from working full-time and has since founded Merci Chloe, a resource that supports moms through the postpartum experience. Merci Chloe is a manifestation of all the self-healing work she’s done since becoming a mother, and she hopes to offer relief and solidarity to other moms who are going through similar things. Kaley lives in Atlanta with her husband, daughter, and two boston terriers and has another baby girl on the way. When she isn’t spending time with her family or writing, she enjoys yoga, being outside, and making jewelry.