About 4 years ago I got bitten by the baby bug. Brian and I still had about another year before we were going to start to make a family, but that didn't keep me from wanting to talk about it and research it (cuz you know that's what Wileys and former Wileys do!) and more or less, just obsess over the whole thing until it was my time to have a baby! Well, rather than drive Brian nuts (or really, rather than have to admit that I had an obsession problem!) I joined an online community at BabyCenter for women waiting to TTC. (At work, in the automotive industry, that stands for "Time To Collision", but here is refers to "Trying to Conceive". Two very different things!)
About 3 years ago a small group of us graduated from the "waiting" to the "actively" category. The message board we joined had about 15 women on it and we chatted nearly every day. Posting about who knows what at that time, but mostly just allowing each other to vent our baby fever with other people with the same focus.
Eventually our little group of 15 grew to about 40 women and we decided we need a new private home. So we started our own website with a private message board. Even though I've actually only met 4 "in real life" (other than Rebecca, Susan, & Nicole who I brought along to the StorkNest), these women are some of my closest friends. We've seen each other through births, miscarriages, marital problems, infertility, layoffs, deaths of family members, weddings, career changes, and all the joys and struggles of mommyhood for most and the heartache of empty arms for a precious few. When we first started chatting no one had any children. Now there are 43 babies and another 12 on the way!!
I heart my Storks! I can't imagine life without them!
So all that background is necessary to explain what took place Tuesday. We had the biggest Stork meetup so far. 5 total Storks + 4 babies + 3 in utero babies. Our sweet Keisha was in town from Texas, so Rebecca, Susan and I met up with her and Nicolle, a Stork that lives in Orange County (she's also one of only two Storks that I've known since the "waiting board"). This was actually the second time I've met Keisha - she was in CA a little over 2 years ago and Nicolle and I had dinner with her. Keisha wasn't yet a verified "non-creepy-old-guy", so Rebecca had to miss out on that meeting.
We had such a wonderful lunch with Keisha, her husband, Michael, their daughter Isabella & Michael's mother. Hopefully their work will bring them out to California again soon!
Left to right: Keisha, Isabella, Nicolle, Dylan, Susan, me, Austin, Rebecca & Jack