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    “Off With Her Head!” –Our Gender Reveal!

    Written by: Naomi Goodale

    YES!!! We are having our 3RD GIRL, Lord help us! And thankfully I am not married to Henry VIII or my head would be toast for it! And if you didn’t know already and you’re wondering, I’ll just come right out and say it—no, we weren’t trying… not even a little, ha!

    And so the story goes…

    David and I had come full circle with the idea of being a family of four. Scratch that, I should say I had come full circle with it since he only ever wanted two to begin with. I’ve always been the one to say “even numbers—give me two or four and nothing more.” I even tried to convince him a few times that we should have a bigger family and ‘four’ kids would be the magic number. But not long after realizing how fulfilled I was with our two beautiful girls whom absolutely adore each other (when they’re not wanting to rip each other’s hair out) I was definitely on board with wanting to be done. The thought of being pregnant again (at that point) would’ve sent me into total panic.

    To be frank, I don’t like the word hate, so I’ll just say I “strongly dislike” pregnancy…all of it really…other than (of course) feeling my babies move around and kick as they get bigger and more active (a whole unique breed of ‘special’ in and of itself) Buuuut the nausea, gag attacks, face-in-toilet, insomnia, back pain, achiness, swollen feet, swollen face, heartburn, uncomfortable tightness in the stomach, peeing all through the night, waddling around and waiting on the glow that seems to only come with a forced effort and ridiculous amount of makeup…oh man! Of course there’s also the memory loss that happens. My brain seems to be on overdrive with no one at the wheel…

    Just mush. Mushy-mushy-mush brain. That’s what I have. I actually forgot to go to my last doctor’s appointment and only realized it days later as I was on my hands and knees scrubbing the floors like a crazy person. In my defense, I didn’t get a call from anyone in that timeframe, so apparently they must have been busy too. Oh and how about all the fun weight gain in pregnancy? 50lbs with Hannah, 40lbs with Adelynn, currently 33lbs with this one (I’m sure I’ll hit the 40-45 mark by the time I’m delivering her). And no matter how many people tell you “you look great…amazing…stunning” you still feel like BLAH…just blah, blah, bloppity-blah, MEH, blaaaaaaah…Pregnancy is no joke people!

    In the first trimester (of this pregnancy which was far worse than the last two) I was a mess, a total and complete mess, It was awful! Like being somewhere on the spectrum of bipolar disorder, I’d go from sheer bliss to complete anger washing over me (within mere seconds) as I’d stare at David with tears streaming down my face, calmly telling him how much I loved him and simultaneously wanted to punch him in the face as hard as I possibly could. “GEEZE!” I KNOW right!?? I’m listening to myself too. Do I sound bitter or what!? I better stop. You get the point.

    The truth is, to some degree I feel bad even complaining about it. Here I stand (actually I’m sitting) having been blessed with three pretty easy pregnancies by comparison to many other not so great stories I personally know. Not to mention all those who have been trying for years (naturally and via en vitro) without any luck (breaks my heart) so I really shouldn’t be complaining right!?

    But… then I remind myself that I’m human and allowed to vent! I truly mean it when I say, I ENVY the woman who loves pregnancy and feels amazing all throughout it. I wish I did. I personally know people who do, so I know that it’s possible. Giving birth on the other hand, I love it. I love, love, LOVE it! And I also find it funny how the whole pregnancy mushy-brain thing jumps right back into action at the moment you’re holding that baby for the first time. It’s as if some magical fairy comes and sprinkles your pregnancy memories with glitter and rose pedals in that blissful moment, you’re suddenly looking at your partner goin’“let’s do this again, I want to make a thousand more of these precious miracles.”

     …Of course there’s the snap back to reality moment the minute that angel starts whaling in your arms. But if I could skip the majority of the pregnancy part and get straight to the births, I’d have seven kids by now…seriously! The miracle of pregnancy astounds me, but the miracle of birth takes the cake! I can’t even explain it in words. Granted I’ve been blessed to the point that nothing has ever gone wrong and I’m sure I’d be singing a different tune if that wasn’t the case…

    So, on to the real story here! Trekking back to November and there we were at Disneyland for the first time with our two girls— the “perfect” little happy family in a world designed for families of four—airfare, hotel deals, restaurants—you name it. Well, we had been joking around every time we saw a family with three, four, even five girls. I’d laugh and say “there’s us love” to which he responds “Ugh!! NO WAY! Speaking of it, I really need to make that appointment” (e.g. vasectomy). The only thing stopping him at that point (several months after our decision had been made) had been his crazy workload keeping him distracted from everything else….or maybe it was really due to the deep, deep, deeeep down knowing that we weren’t quite done, ha!

    Fast forward five days later and I’m driving home from dropping off Hannah when I get a text from my sister who was at her doctor’s—“We DIDN’T miscarry!!!” My heart just about burst out of my chest with sheer joy as I started crying and thanking God. I just couldn’t contain my happiness for them. But as I had simultaneously read the text, something inside of me asked ‘What would be the odds?’ As in being pregnant for a second time together. Hannah and my niece Brylynn were only four weeks apart. This pregnancy, five weeks apart.

    But the thought faded quickly. I shrugged it off reminding myself that there would be “no way it was possible.” We had been so careful and RELIGIOUS with protection, and yes, especially on the date nights when alcohol was involved. Anyhow, later on that Friday night the same little (unrelenting) voice guided me to see if I had any old pregnancy tests laying around in the cupboards. It’s like I was compelled to just put it out of my mind once and for all. And as it would turn out, I had not one but twoexpired—Dollar Tree tests, and decided to take them regardless.

    First test: two dark-pink lines. Heart racing. Disbelief. Shock. Fear. A little joy. Anxiety. More joy. More fear. “Faulty test” I conclude.

    Second test: two dark-pink lines. Heart racing faster. “Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god…he’s going to freak out.” I also couldn’t believe the fact that here we were (my sister and I) once again. We are seriously cosmically connected with these pregnancies! I instantly texted her the picture of the positive tests to which she responded: “Holy ****!!!!” And I instantly replied: “I KNOW!!!! CRAZY!!! I’m leaving to pick up food for us, I’ll call you. He doesn’t know yet, EEK!!”

    To be 100% sure, as I was on the phone with her, I picked up a third test at Rite Aid and made a beeline straight to the bathroom. “Light pink plus sign…it’s pretty faded though” I said to her. And she’s laughing, “Naomi, this is the THIRD time you’ve peed, it’s gonna be lighter. YOU’RE PREGNANT!” Ok, so maybe I was still in denial. What can I say?

    And we continued our baffled amazement as I proceeded to the check-out line where an older gent, the cashier Fred, gave me a half smirk as I placed the opened box on the counter to pay for it. I smiled and teased him, “OH come on, don’t act like you’ve never seen this before!” He laughed. “I’ve always wondered, what ‘is it’ that you women really just can’t wait until you’re home?”

    I told him “we have two girls already (ages 3 and 1) and this is more than likely the third. I had to confirm it before I go home and scare the bejeezus out of my husband!” 

     Of course I also preceded to tell him that my sister (still on the line) was also pregnant and this would be our second time ‘coincidentally’ conceiving so close together (though admittedly I don’t believe in coincidence). Fred says to me with a sly grin, “Well, if you have a boy you know what you have to name him!”

    “Fred, his name shall be Fred!” I laughed. Suffice it to say, I think everyone standing in line listening to our conversation got more than they could’ve bargained for walking into Rite Aid that night. And when it comes to the hubs reaction, he joined me downstairs to proceed with our weekly ‘date night in’ after the girls were asleep. I suppose I should’ve let him eat before dropping the bomb buuuuut that would’ve been too nice of me. I turned to him and looked him square in the eyes with an evil grin, “You wanna hear something CRAZY? We’re pregnant!!!”

    Do I even need to describe the look on his face?

    “WHAT!?” … “NO you’re not, No you’re not, No you’re not.” (Yes, he said it three times) “I’ll give you a minute” I told him, preceding to take my first bite.“Ugh, I don’t even have an appetite anymore…how is this possible? How? What!? Oh my god love. What are we gonna do!?? How do you know for sure!?” (poor guy!) “Well, I think it’s safe to say we’re gonna have a baby and I’m pretty sure the third pregnancy test I just took at Rite Aid confirmed it” 

    Silence. Silence. Silence.

    I could see the fear wash over him before he started ranting off all his thoughts. Three college tuitions…maybe even three weddings…and neither one of us could even think of a time when we were remotely concerned that it could’ve happened. Talk about what had to have been the ever so ‘slightest’ tear in the condom (or I’m sure we would have noticed) in perfect unison with my time of the month. I guess the joke was on us! Just as we finish making our plans God laughs—“Didn’t you know condom failure is a real thing!?” Yep, we’re the 12 in 100 odds!

    And of course it only took several minutes into letting the dust settle that we wrapped our heads around a third child and we were beyond excited. I mean how could we NOT be under the circumstances? To say the least, this was some divine little baby whose soul was simply determined to be part of this family before we closed shop.

    And as for my “even numbers” mentality. Is it still there? You bet! I’m not done with children, but I am definitely done with pregnancies! David will be getting the snip-snip before our little Sophia Grace arrives early July. Nonetheless, I have always wanted to adopt, so if you’re asking me, I’d say “there’s our fourth for ya!” ….down the road of course. Though I should be knocking on wood as I say this. If anyone was likely to get pregnant even after a vasectomy, it would be us. I told him he’s gonna have to get snipped, I need my tubes tied, and then an IUD to top it off! I mean….seriously, with one miscarriage in the mix this is our fourth pregnancy and Hannah was the only one we actually tried with. We are quite the fertile pair to say the least.

    But we have agreed that as hard as it may be initially, if we were meant to have three all along (which I know we were) we are glad that we are busting them out back to back while we’re still in baby mode. Not to mention they’ll be so close in age (21 months and 22 months apart) that they’ll be best buddies growing up. All three will even get to be in high school together for at least a year. Hannah, Adelynn, and Sophia—“The Goodale Girls” Daddy better have his shot gun ready!

    And were we disappointed when we found out she wasn’t a boy? Naturally most people thought we would be (maybe they were) but not even a little! Funny thing is, even though we both thought this one was our boy, the name ‘Sophia Grace’ was literally the only name going through my head. The very same thing happened with Adelynn so I suppose deep down I’ve known with all of them. And while it would’ve been wonderful to have a boy, we were/are just as thrilled to add another sweet girl to the mix. Girls definitely tend to be more whiny and emotional than boys (that’s for sure) but little girls are just such sweet dolls and fun to dress; we love raising ours. And hey, if we do end up adopting one day then we’ll go for that boy!

    At least science has ruled out that the woman has anything to do with gender. David is definitely a ‘female factory’ and I think he’s finally shaking in his boots a little. I’D BE if I was the only man in a house of women—Lord help him! Especially when they’re all going through puberty and wanting to have boyfriends around the same time—aye yi yi! We are nervous to say the least as it will be an adjustment period having one still in diapers and our oldest who still thinks she’s a baby (when she’s not acting like a teenager) half the time.

    I’ll admit, it definitely hasn’t been easy being pregnant while keeping up with our two munchkins—park and play dates, doctor appointments, crafts, preschool, threenager attitude, cleaning a 3600 sq ft home, endless laundry, errands, more tantrums, cooking etc. and I truly can’t even imagine how I’m gonna juggle everything once Sophia’s here, BUT I’m gonna hold onto the faith because I know that things always have and always will work out.

    On the upside, last week we started Adelynn with Hannah at her M/W home daycare & Montessori. Having just those two days to get things done (kid free)—with a little added time to myself—have been nothing short of rainbows and unicorns! Well, I should say ‘other than’ the initial drop off. The separation anxiety Ad gets kills me, but I’m told she’s always fine within minutes of me leaving and has a great time being there with Hannah and socializing with all the kids and today was actually the first day that she walked right in, gave me kisses, and waved me off! Couldn’t believe it! She’s already getting more comfortable with saying bye to mommy. I know it’s good for her, and it will also be good to have the one-on-one time with Sophia a couple days out of the week…the same treatment her big sisters had.

    I also know that when it feels like more than I can handle, I just need to continue to take time out to stretch, breath, and meditate (when David is here to watch the girls) and to remind myself that I’ve got a whole team of guardian angels and guides on the other side who have been and will continue to help me through my days. Nonetheless, my worst moments have paled in comparison to the pure joy and reward…the honor, I have felt in raising these earth angels of mine. I was meant for motherhood and there will never be a greater fulfillment for me in this—human—life of mine.

    And “all this is Life” I tell myself. It isn’t always easy and it’s not supposed to be, but it can be ‘easier’ when we are aware of those things that bring the deepest satisfaction and love to our hearts. No matter how hard life feels, they compel us and give us the greatest sense of purpose. Of course this is different for everyone, but for me it’s in the Joy of raising my children—all the incredible memories we’ve made with them so far and those yet to be made as we add one more unique and special personality to the ‘Goodale Mix.’ We are a bag of emotions, but the one that tops them all is excitement. We are so excited for this new chapter as ‘Officially Outnumbered’ parents to three sweet girls…

    Wish us luck!

    **For more frequent updates on the Goodale family, visit Naomi’s personal blog here. 🙂

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    Photography by: Natalia Cruz


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