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Mothers ... at Last

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"Wooohooo!!" That was Carrie's first response to the baby pictures Jody sent the day after Zoë arrived. Carrie and Jenny agreed that Zoë was the most beautiful baby they'd seen since their own little girls were born.

Jody and Scott finally had the daughter they'd been dreaming of, but the couple soon learned that the worries of pregnancy are just preparation for the worries of parenthood. Zoë developed jaundice (a common condition affecting more than half of all newborns) and had to have her blood checked daily with heel pricks.

"She's been awesome, poor little girl," says Jody. "And she breast-feeds like a champ, but for a while I had to supplement with formula so she'd go to the bathroom more and get rid of the jaundice faster. I talked to Jenny about how bad I felt that I couldn't breast-feed all the time."

Jenny, the most experienced mom in the group, was a supportive shoulder for Jody. "She had lots of questions, like, 'Can I pump breast milk into the same bottle I pumped into a few hours ago?'" Jenny says. "The technical answer is no, but in real life, you have a newborn to deal with, and of course you can pump into the same bottle!" And when Jody and Scott decided to give up breast-feeding after a month and use formula (due to Zoë's reflux, jaundice, and insufficient weight gain), Jenny was there for her again. "I e-mailed her to check on her progress, making sure she wasn't engorged or had plugged ducts," Jenny says. "I also gave her tips on drying up — since no one wants to walk around with drippy boobs for no reason. I'm thrilled Jody gave breast-feeding a try. She gave Zoë breast milk for a month, and that's such a good start in life."

Redbook Photo of Woman with Long Hair Holding Baby

Zoë's arrival isn't the only reason Jenny's got newborns on her mind. She and her husband, Sean, 38, want a brother or sister for Nora, who celebrated her first birthday over the summer at a picnic with more than 30 family members and friends, plus cakes made by Jenny. As she prepared to try again, she discussed her plans with an excited Carrie and Jody, happy to have friends who could talk with her in baby-making shorthand like "LP" (luteal phase) and "DPO" (days past ovulation). "After everything Jenny's gone through, I'm sure that the thought of trying to get pregnant again is difficult," says Jody. "I was worried through my whole pregnancy, and I'm sure she has a lot on her mind too. But she's really on top of everything."

Because Jenny has polycystic ovarian syndrome, a common cause of fertility problems, she has long had irregular menstrual cycles; she used the fertility drug Clomid to become pregnant with both Nora and Andrew. But she has reason to hope that the situation will be different this time — and she isn't as stressed about a third pregnancy as her friends might expect.

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