Skip to main content - The Official Portal for North Dakota State Government

Life As We Know It

Post Date

Cayla in the snow showing off the baby bump

From the beginning, it’s been a delicate balance of how personal to get in The Drift, but I’ve always favored too much verses too little because that’s just who I am.

I’m an introvert not known for my ability to small talk or share my emotions, and I’m definitely not a hugger, but I find writing to be an outlet that helps me express my feelings, many of which are felt most intensely in the outdoors. A sentiment I hope is felt by readers and helps remind or inspire you to get outside and feel that way, too.

In the context of this balance, this blog that publicly weaves my professional and personal life, I’ve thus far remained silent about my biggest venture yet.

The baby's room

Any day now, my husband and I are expecting a baby boy.

Professionally, it just didn’t need to be announced yet, but in addition to some interruptions in my writing, I’m sure you can also anticipate some big changes in content from now on. And personally, for other women feeling this way, it’s honestly not been something I’ve identified with much until recently.

I’ve been fortunate to stay healthy and continue to mostly live life with minimal hiccups and a few modifications here and there (suspenders were a game changer for hunting this fall and I admit to mostly walking behind Scott throughout the snowy late hunting season and to not packing out much of my own big game animals).

But the extra hip pain, jabs to the stomach and overall realization that we’ll soon be responsible for an infant can no longer be ignored.

And I’m not really looking forward to labor, long nights, or being forced to slow down. However, maybe it’s the forecasted end to this stretch of warm, calm January days, but I’m finally ready to accept it.

I finally feel the most excited I have thus far for our little dynamic to shift, to watch Scott become a dad, for the challenge of continuing to live our lifestyle together, and for an entirely new level of emotions I can’t yet comprehend.

As I’m sure you’ve guessed, it is incredibly important to us that little “Pip,” as he’s called around the office but nowhere near his actual name, is raised with a connection to the outdoors, whatever that looks like to him.

Calya with harvested deer

I know it will be unimaginably difficult, but if there’s anything I have confidence in, it’s my stubbornness and the team Scott and I make together.

I fully anticipate there will be outings that end in tears and defeat and that there will be times we are questioned and even scrutinized for some of our choices.

Even so, I can’t imagine motherhood without “Pip” in tow for spring shed hunting hikes, turkey camp, taking naps this summer on our strategically upgraded boat, and watching “big brother” Fins work the uplands this fall from mom or dad’s carrying pack.

In the meantime, we’ll take all the good thoughts on a healthy (and easy) birth and any advice from the plentiful parents already raising kids outside.

And don’t be surprised to find me waddling around on the ice for a few more days, bibs unzipped, trying to soak in the last of life as we know it.

Cayla holding speared pike