I found out I was pregnant on a Monday. At the time, I lived in Alexandria, Virginia – a place that we loved and planned to stay in for many years to come. I spent the next few days walking around my favorite parks – watching kids climb on the playground, smiling at moms passing by with strollers, and envisioning my life there with our new baby.
I found out I was moving to Seattle three days later. Fast forward a number of months, and I found myself 18 weeks pregnant and living in a new city, new timezone, and on a new coast. I spent all of last summer getting to know Seattle. I dove full force into making this place our home. I scoured Google maps, followed all the local accounts on Twitter, and picked new spots for us to dine every weekend.
But my favorite part of all of it was the promise of next summer. I’d walk the parks with my big round belly, smiling at the moms’ groups playing in the grass with their babies. I’d see the beaches full of tiny swim trunks and sandy feet. I’d try to imagine what that would look like for us – me and my baby. It was so hard to picture back then.
And here we are, ready to close the door on the summer I anticipated so greatly. I can welcome September knowing that we took this summer by storm. It was everything I hoped it would be, and somehow at the same time – nothing I could have ever imagined before Cullen was actually here.
We splashed in the wading pools and saw giraffes at the zoo. We swung on the swings and logged countless miles in the stroller. We took summer vacation with family and a first dip in the lake. We had beach days and fought over the merits of eating sand. We did it all.
I’m clearly biased, but I feel like Cullen was the perfect age for enjoying summer. As the temps warmed up, he had just started to crawl, and he found great joy in soft grass under his newly active knees. He learned to stand just in time to splash in the wading pools and he was just big enough to float in a raft in the big boy pool. And just as the heat really reached Seattle in late summer, he took off running and hasn’t looked back.
As he approaches the one year mark, I get a lot of people asking if we’re thinking about the next baby. Silly as it might sound, I’d love another October baby so that we can have another summer just like this one.
Last year, I couldn’t have truly imagined how special this first summer would be with Cullen. Likewise, I have a hard time picturing what next summer will be like with him as a toddler. But I have no doubt we’ll make the most of it.
Read more from Emily on her personal blog Daily Garnish, where she creates healthy vegetarian recipes, recaps her latest running adventures, and chronicles life as a new mom to her son and two crazy dogs. You can follow along on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest too!