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I'M ASHLYN

I've been called the OG of copywriters for creatives, wink—I hook up women with words as a launch copywriter & brand strategist. Even while raking in more than 7-figures since I've been at it, I believe working from a place of rest (not hustle) IS possible—and I want the same for you.
 
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June 28, 2018

We’re Having a Baby: Welcoming Baby Boy Carter, Part 1!

Reading time: 7 min.

Well, glory be to our Creator: we are so excited to announce we’re gonna meet a little boy, Lord-willing, in December!

Thank you, thank you for all your sweet words so far! Sincerely, I read them like a little toddler grinning ear to ear.

It’s been a journey already, and I want to create some honest space here, since I talk SO much about rest and the intersection of rest with work. I KNOW things are about to change (parents don’t seem to rest all that much at the beginning!), but I also believe firmly that work is a good, good thing God’s created for His glory, and I’m not finished exploring that. Plus, I want to make a little space for recovering workaholic girls like me like Nancy Ray’s blog post created for me (more on that below).

At the risk of sounding a little crazy, and with all the grace in my heart for friends who are walking through seasons of miscarriage, infertility, adoption, and so many other meanders to parenthood, I wanted to be honest about what the Lord in his gentleness and loving care has shown me.

Here goes nothin’!


How far along are you? 15 weeks!


How was the first trimester? Were you sick? Chyuppp. Somehow I COMPLETELY missed the memo that you experience exhaustion. So that was really hard. We found out the week I went into my Copywriting for Creatives™ launch, so I had to tell my team early since I was getting sick and couldn’t get through the day without a nap—I thought I’d hurl in the middle of a webinar!

Plus, I was on airplanes constantly the first 2 months of pregnancy, which wasn’t a dreamboat. I traveled to: the Kentucky Derby (virgin Lillies for me, please!), Creative Live in San Francisco (which the team was SO sweet about letting me rest), Chicago to speak at She Did It Her Way, Waco to speak at Illume (my friend Jenna Kutcher [a week ahead of me] and I were taking turns laying down in the back room between sessions), and 3 weddings.

I think I only GOT sick 3-4 times, but I felt like my face was green for weeks. I usually love flying simply because we travel a lot—trust me that I knew right where that barf bag was and nabbed aisle seats on every plane.

Then, just like so many told me, it happens: you turn the corner, and you feel normal again.

Mentally … Well, I’ll usher you to the next question. 😉


Were you trying? I don’t think Wes will mind me saying baha … put it this way, it pretty much takes once or twice, kids. 😉 I want to be honest about this because—while I want to be so, so incredibly respectful and sensitive to the community of women shedding light and voicing hope about infertility and miscarriage, I was a little surprised when I got sick one weekend and took the test.

Honestly, because so many people talk about not getting pregnant, I just assumed that was more normal and that would be our story, too.

To note, I put on my 2018 Powersheets in December that I wanted to spend 2018 focused on getting my mindset and body to a place where we could have real conversations about trying to get pregnant. With my past history and story being in recovery in 2015 for anorexia, generalized anxiety, and depression, I honestly wasn’t sure if I could GET pregnant—I just didn’t know.

In January, I had a dream one of my best friends was pregnant, and I called her. “Camilla, do you have something to tell me?” “Actually,” she said, “your dream’s right.” (Again, the Lord is cool in how he shows us how to pray for one another.)

But in that moment, my first thought was this: “I’m glad it’s not me. I LOVE our life, I love my job, I love traveling with Wes. I don’t want to mess this all up yet.”

My eyes got big when I realized my brain said that. I told my mom and two best friends to please start praying for my hard heart to be softened, because clearly there was a little bit of fear and selfishness wrapped up there. I hope this makes sense: Reading Nancy Ray’s blog a few months back helped, and I talked to her about it more in person at The School of Styling. I’ve never really WANTED an infant. I’ve never been the “maternal” friend. I’m organized and don’t like stuff or even the dog toys around. I *clearly* have a past with body image. I love my job. I know nothing about pregnancy*.

*I have called a trimester a “semester” more than once. Once on my Instagram announcement post.

But when I fast-forward and cast a vision over my life, I wanted to be sitting on a porch with Wes in rocking chairs with grandchildren running barefoot through the back yard.

You see the problem. 😉

Knowing I wasn’t the only girl who never really felt maternal instincts naturally growing up (but still thought she’d be a mom one day … weird combo) and talking to Nancy helped me so much, and I KNOW the Lord heard our prayers and softened my heart.

Wes has been ready for a while, and I’ve been the one that didn’t want my job or lifestyle to change.

It’s been a sweet season of being open and honest with friends about all this, and hearing how yes, it’s all different and you can’t go back, but it’s a beautiful different.

I’m truly at a place of joy now, and I want to just watch myself—I know I’ll experience a lot of emotions before and after birth. I know I have much to surrender to the Lord.


When did you find out? The weekend I was supposed to speak at RESET Conference, I got sick. HA. It was almost 3 weeks in, and I think I’m just really aware of my body from years of classical ballet. I just felt different that Friday, and definitely did that Saturday after I emailed the RESET team that I couldn’t board a plane in this state.

My body just FELT pregnant, and I didn’t even know what that should feel like. But, I took 2 of those cheap-o Amazon tests, then zoomed to the store for a digital one so I could see this spelled out.


Did you tell Wes in a cute way? I like to think so. 😉 He was at his brother’s bachelor weekend, so when he came home Master’s Sunday, I tied signs around the dogs’ necks that said “Big Brother” and “Big Sister.” I shooed them into the living room where Wes was about to take a bite of his sandwich and watch some golfer take a swing, and before he could take a bite, he saw the signs. He dropped the sandwich, turned around with big eyes, and said “shut.up.”

He never did eat the rest of that sandwich. 😉


Do you have names picked out? A few, but nothing locked in stone yet. We have some jam-up fam names on both sides, so we’re running through combinations. Wes already has a favorite … I’m the indecisive one!


Have you had any weird food cravings? HAMBURGERS. I was a vegetarian for about 6 years before my eating disorder, and I joke with Wes I still don’t really know how to cook meat very well. Early on, I started wanting all the red meat I could get—so cool how our bodies know what they need. I ate 1 or 2 bananas a day for weeks, and for a while, Chick-fil-A plain biscuits or chicken nuggets were all I wanted. Vegetables and salad made me want to hurl.

Oh—preg brain is weird too. One day I put the dog bowl on the counter to fill up with the faucet, and I walked off AND FORGOT IT. It overflowed all over the counter. Wes was not amused.


Will you still run your business? Lord willing I will! As I mentioned, I pictured myself as a mom one day, but the closer it got to these years, the more I loved my first baby, my little business and how it grew from a place of redemption.

I know it will look different, but YES, I want to be a working mama. I was raised by one, my mom was raised by one, and Wes was raised by one.

I know my productivity will change, my schedule will change, my business model will change. Praise the LORD for my mastermind, where so many of us are either pregnant or thinking it through, because I’m not going through the entrepreneur-meets-pregnancy journey alone.

I’ll take maternity leave from early December to early March, I think!


What’s next? Well, we have our annual sabbatical in August, so that “anniversary trip” is now … a babymoon, I guess. Ha. We’re planning that this weekend, and I specifically told Wes we’re not allowed to go anywhere that has fabulous wine. 😉 I don’t really like beer, so I’ve requested countries that have a hoppin’ (get it?) beer scene.

I’m speaking at the Signature Atelier in France in July, which should be fun! After that, I’ve pretty much got the rest of the “on” months this year planned out. I’m coming WAY down on commitments so I can really focus on getting the business and my sweet team ready for a lil’ change.

There have been some GREAT posts about maternity leave that other creative entrepreneurs have posted, and I wanted to link those—they’ve helped a ton wrap my head around what it even IS when you’re self-employed.


God is so, so gracious, and his timing is GOOD. We’re so grateful for the sweet texts, voice notes, calls, comments, messages, and more—truly, we have such a dear circle.

Thank you for letting me share this story with you!

Freshly sharpened pencil bouquet ready, I'm here to make sure your words sell. I help women like you steward your story well, so you can work from a place of rest—not hustle.

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8

comments

  1. caleyjaderosenberg

    June 30th, 2018 at 2:34 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!! Oh friend, what amazing news – so so so happy for you! All in His divine plan x

  2. Ashlyn Carter

    July 1st, 2018 at 10:52 pm

    Caley, thanks so much! In HIS plan, amen! xo. Ash

  3. Ronny Morris

    June 30th, 2018 at 7:02 pm

    Congratulations to you and Wes! May God bless you as parents, giving you wisdom, patience and understanding. May God’s hand always be upon this little one, may God always guide and protect him. May your little one always delight himself in God and you.

  4. Ashlyn Carter

    July 1st, 2018 at 10:51 pm

    Thank you so much Ronny for these sweet prayers. We’re feeling so blessed already for the way that people are praying for this sweet little guy! xo. Ash

  5. Lisa King

    July 2nd, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    Congratulations on your pregnancy! I agree that you should avoid great wines during your babymoon–mine was in Italy!

  6. Ashlyn Carter

    July 2nd, 2018 at 6:37 pm

    Lisa, see this is what I’m trying to avoid! Haha. Thanks for understanding, and we so appreciate all the love we’ve already received for Baby Boy Carter! xo. Ash

  7. Margaret Fu

    July 5th, 2018 at 4:02 am

    Congrats, Ashlyn! I can only imagine how much life will change afterwards, but seeing how you’re kicking ass in other areas in life, I’m sure you’re gonna have a good handle on motherhood, too 🙂 I totally agree with you on not having that initial maternal instinct but knowing you eventually want a family. I’m glad we tend to act with our future selves in mind 😉 Praying all goes well for you during the pregnancy!

  8. Ashlyn Carter

    July 6th, 2018 at 1:11 am

    Margaret, thank you so much for your comment … seriously SO encouraging. Girl, you need to coin the phrase “act with your future self in mind” SO GOOD. Thank you for your prayers! Wes and I are seriously so appreciative of all the family, friends and internet friends we’ve got praying over this lil’ guy! xo. Ash

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