I’m excited to finally share with you that I’m pregnant with my second child! My husband and I couldn’t be more thrilled, and I think our son is pretty happy too. He likes to kiss my belly and say “hi” to the baby. Occasionally he will even hug my belly and rest his head on it – it’s so sweet! I have less than two months left before the baby’s born and I’m feeling great.

For me getting and staying pregnant is the hard part, but once I’m pregnant my pregnancies have been fairly easy. I didn’t get morning sickness with either one and I’ve been able to continue living my life as normal during this pregnancy, including my usual exercise routine.

As with my first pregnancy, keeping the pregnancy through the first trimester is the hard part for me. After my son turned one we started trying to get pregnant. I got pregnant pretty soon after we started trying, but had a miscarriage after just six weeks. I was devastated. I naively thought that after successfully carrying one child to full term I wouldn’t have any more problems.

But my doctor was confident that I could still have a successful pregnancy. And about three months later we were lucky enough to become pregnant with my current pregnancy that’s been going great from the start.

All of my well checks have been normal and the baby is growing and getting bigger and stronger everyday! We can’t wait to meet this baby. We’re waiting until the baby is born to find out the sex just like with our first child. My husband and I agree that the surprise at birth is worth the wait!

I announced my pregnancy to my manager and coworkers when I was around 15 weeks pregnant. My belly started to show sooner with this pregnancy than with my first one (I’ve heard that is common with the second pregnancy because the stomach muscles aren’t as tight anymore, thanks to the first pregnancy). When I didn’t feel like my clothes could hide my belly anymore, I told my manager.

My manager and colleagues were all happy for us and supportive. My company was recently bought by a larger company and we’re going to transition to new health care benefits less than a month before the baby’s born! So the tricky thing for me now is figuring out what my maternity leave and insurance benefits will be in the new company. I’ve been able to learn about most of the benefits in advance of becoming an official employee, which has been really helpful.

I started to look into the benefits early because sometimes it takes awhile to get all the paperwork in place. I’m hoping I’m giving myself enough time to get everything sorted and ready for when the baby arrives, so neither I nor my employer are left with any confusion when I go on maternity leave.

I’ve learned I can take up to 6 months parental leave (most of it unpaid). I am pleased with the generous leave policy and plan to take advantage of it. I do wish more of the time was paid, but luckily we have saved enough that we feel comfortable for me to take that long off without pay.

Unfortunately, our new company does not offer any leave for fathers, so my husband will only be able take off as much time as he has available in vacation. I think this is a gap in many companies’ leave policies. It is so important for the father to be able to bond with the baby and support the mother in the first few weeks after birth. My husband was given 4 weeks leave with our previous company and it was time that we really enjoyed bonding as a new family.

Now, with less than two months to go before the baby is born, I am (finally) in official nesting phase. I’m getting the baby’s room ready, trying to decide which double stroller to buy, and stocking up on some basic essentials for the baby. I am a little nervous and definitely very excited to become a working mom of two. And I’ll get to share all the ups and downs of figuring out the best work/life balance with two kids right here on Engineering Emily. 🙂

How much notice did you give before your maternity leave? Did it take a long time to figure out all your benefits? How long did you take for your maternity leave?

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