I've been getting a lot of questions about our whole situation over here once the baby comes, so here's some answers to the more common questions!
Will you deliver the baby in Berlin?
Yes! I have a great doctor who we both feel comfortable with and the healthcare in Berlin is supposed to be phenomenal. In fact, it's so great that our insurance won't approve us to go and deliver at the American base. I've heard nothing but great things about having a baby in Germany and most Americans say they prefer it to delivering in the United States. Things like a week in the hospital and more emphasis on mother/child bonding are always among the highlights people speak about.
Why the name Baby Maximus?
Ha! This one is a joke between Mike and I. Well, at least I see it as a joke. Ever since I've known Mike, he's always said he wanted to name his first son Maximus. I vetoed that before marriage was even on the table, but we've compromised and have been calling the baby Maximus until it's born. We're keeping his real name a secret until then, so this is just our code name.
Are you still going to travel once the baby comes?
We're going to try! Obviously, it won't be quite as intense of a travel schedule and Mike will probably be doing some solo travel so that he can still fulfill the goals of the Olmsted, but we're hoping to do some smaller trips once we've got our bearings. Luckily, we will have at least three months (maybe even closer to four depending on when Baby Maximus makes his appearance), so we're hoping to get some decent travel in. We have no idea what life will look like post-baby, so maybe we're being really ambitious, but we'll only have a few months left and don't want to miss out on anything.
Speaking of leaving, what will that look like?
The big question to which we have no idea what the answer is. Here's what we're hoping. Mike finishes school at the end of July, which means we'll probably move at the beginning of August, since his Department Head school starts September 1. This means Baby Maximus will be about three and a half months old. Everyone tells me this is the perfect age for a big trans-Atlantic flight because they're not a newborn, but they aren't crawling/walking all over the place. We're just hoping and praying that the military is generous and gets Baby Maximus his own seat on the plane.
The biggest hurdle will be all of the stuff that babies need and what to do with all of that. Right now, I have registered at Amazon, that has all of the stuff that we will need in Germany and then Babies R Us which will have everything we need once we get back to the United States. Hopefully, we can pack most of the stuff that we will need from Germany into our suitcases (clothes, burp cloths, bottles, etc) since we won't need things like high chairs and baby gates quite yet. Anything that can't fit in our suitcases will have to go with the movers, which means we won't see it for up to 60 days (and sometimes more). We're trying to be minimalists while here in Germany when it comes to baby stuff because we know it all has to be moved back. Plus, experienced moms tell me that less is more.
What about a nursery?
We aren't doing one. Well, at least not in Germany. We have the room here in our apartment, but given the short amount of time, it's just not worth it. Baby Maximus gets to be roomies with us the entire time we're in Germany (which he probably would be even if he had a nursery of his own). We found a really nice pack n play that comes with a bassinet, so we'll use that while we're here and then take that with us when we leave, so we have it while we're waiting for all of our stuff to come. I'm sure our guest room will be partially a baby storage room for things like clothes and diapers, as well. We didn't want to deal with getting all of the furniture for a nursery because so much of our stuff has gotten damaged and/or broken during moves. So, we'll just wait until we get settled in the United States.
Are you having a baby shower?
You'll have to talk to Anna and my mom about that one. They have a grand plan that I am not allowed to know about. :)
What other questions do you have? Mike and I are quickly realizing how clueless we are when it comes to babies, so this plan could all get scrapped once Baby Maximus makes his arrival, but right now, this is what we're going with.