My calendar has been pretty clear since the middle of November at work, so it’s actually left me with a lot of time to catch up on cleaning things up for organizational purposes for customer work, as well as personal tasks I wanted to get done before Pookie Bear arrives. I was a little befuddled when a colleague on my team sent me a calendar invitation with our names titled: “Last 1:1.” That was weird, I thought. We’d only had maybe one or two 1:1s leading up to my leave since she’s covering for a handful of my accounts, so I thought it was strange. So then I did some investigative work and checked about 10 other team members’ calendars at the same time/date to see what they had. Welp, it looks like they all had a private invite on their calendar for the exact same time. These deceptive fools planned a surprise baby shower for me!
So I got into the Zoom late this afternoon and of course, there are about 15 other people in the Zoom other than the colleague who originally tried to dupe me, and they all laughed and said, “well, we REALLY need to talk about ALL your accounts RIGHT now in case you go into labor!” It was super touching; I was nearly in tears when I got on the video chat. Even virtually, I felt so overwhelmed with love and appreciation. At previous companies, somehow, I had always taken the responsibility of planning things like surprise baby or wedding showers, organizing cash pool gifts for those celebrating the next phase of their lives. It was something I enjoyed because a) I love surprises and b) I like organizing events that make people feel seen and appreciated. The look on their faces when the event is sprung up on them always gets me.
And now, a handful of colleagues I am close to got together to do this… for me. None of us have ever even met face to face given the pandemic, yet somehow, I have felt more loved, appreciated, and seen at this company than any other company before. We talked a lot about babies, partners, changing relationships, sleepless nights, #teamnosleep, and endless cuddles. And they sent me a really generous Amazon gift card, put together a virtual card of well wishes and parenting advice, and said more was on the way.
Pregnancy has really made me feel so grateful for so many things. I can’t even believe how overwhelmed with happiness and gratitude I’ve been all along the way, not only that things have gone so smoothly with everything from pregnancy symptoms to doctor’s appointments and test results to Pookie’s anatomy scans, but even just so overwhelmed with gratitude for the people in my life: my friends, each of whom has been there for me in some shape or form to support me through my IVF and pregnancy journey; my colleagues, who have always checked in on me regarding how I’m feeling, how pregnancy is going, and showered me with gifts to welcome Pookie Bear; my family, and yes, even my mom for being there for me and checking in on me, even when I may not have consciously wanted her to; the professionals ranging from the bond I’ve built with my therapist to my doctors/sonographers/nurses at the fertility clinic and my regular OB-GYN pracice and my doula; and of course, Chris, my rock who keeps me going strong regardless of what obstacles we’ve faced. I have had no shortage of support in some shape or form, and I just feel so blessed to have everything I have in my life.
And I know once Pookie arrives, she will have a similar web of support surrounding her.