Baby On Board with Rip Curl Surfer, Rosy Hodge.

On the 9th November 2020 the legendary Rosy Hodge made public an additional line to her already impressive resume… Sitting alongside WSL Commentator, Rip Curl Surfer and SurfAid Ambassador, Rosy now adds Mum to the list.

Rosy took to Instagram to announce the big news, her caption summarising beautifully a story with a message so familiar to many people this year.

“Around the time surfing, golf, parks & the beaches were closed due to COVID, salaries were cut & so were expenses, cable had to go, we only got the Golf Channel anyway, or so I was told. The sun was setting well before 5.30, the year so far was stressful, sad & often disappointing. @foulkey & I settled into our ‘quarantine’ life, cooking at home, enjoying the luxury of spending time together & celebrating little wins in our family unit. We reflected & rescheduled our goals for the future, even rostering in starting a family further down the line... This wasn’t planned, like much of 2020. But has been the brightest light & biggest source of joy for @foulkeyy , myself & our families. We can’t wait to meet our son in Feb/March 2021 and thank him for his perfect timing ❤️ 3 generations of Foulke men in the Lowers lineup, just remember, mom’s going right”

Born in the quiet seaside surf town of Jeffery’s Bay, South Africa, Rosy learnt to surf on one of the world’s best right-handers. As you can imagine, her love for surfing blossomed and took her life on a wild and unexpected journey. Four years competing on the World Tour turned into a career travelling to all corners of the globe as a full-time commentator for the WSL. Which lead to joining the Rip Curl Team in 2017.

We caught up with Rosy for a hot minute to discuss how her new chapter, Baby On Board, is coming along… Safe to say we are all excited for a little Mr Hodge to be joining us in the line-up!

Rosy! Congrats! What a beautiful surprise. Was it a shock to find out you were pregnant?

Thank you! Haha yes, it was a massive surprise! We for sure weren’t trying to get pregnant during a pandemic and while both of our jobs have been so heavily affected. But it has been the best thing to happen to us, we are so beyond happy.

I think so many things this year have been out of our control, even this, so it’s been a joyful process being pregnant, Ian and I have been on a crash course of pregnancy and being expectant parents!

I can only imagine! Had you and your husband, Ian, or better known as Foulkey, always hoped to create a family sometime in the future?

It would be a crime for Foulkey not to become a dad, he is so good with his little nieces and our friend’s babies. And, I have always wanted to be a mom. We kind of had a timeline of when we wanted to start trying… then COVID hit and we had a pretty hard conversation of pushing the idea out for a bit of time. It honestly made me pretty sad. I think for women when you have a career that you love but you also have a dream of having a family it can be tricky to set that idea into motion. I had my timeline set and we were working towards it before the pandemic came along.

But, I honestly think this is the best way it could have happened for us; it turned our whole year around and has given us so much joy. Giving into life and realizing there are some things set into motion that are out of your control has been a beautiful life lesson. I feel super grateful.

It’s great that you and Foulkey have been able to be so adaptable. So, you’re due in Feb/Mar and already know it’s going to be a boy. What made you decide to reveal the gender?

We both were pretty keen to find out as soon as we could.

We are so hopeless, we got the envelope, and were planning for Ian’s mom to open it on her birthday, with my family on FaceTime… Driving back from the clinic Ian was holding the paper against the window trying to figure out what it said. I was secretly hoping for a boy, even though we had a really cute girls name in mind. In the end the reveal with our families was the most special moment.

And how has pregnancy been so far? Any big learning curves, or curve balls?

Pregnancy is a wild ride! I keep looking at my body in awe of what it’s capable of. I think one thing I reflect on is, before I got pregnant, I had certain body insecurities and I could be so hard on myself.

Pregnancy makes you want to remind yourself and young women how incredible we are and wasting time and energy being insecure doesn’t do you any good. The first trimester I instantly put on weight, I was out of breath doing activities I would usually breeze through and I felt sick all day and have been on a rollercoaster of emotions… but I have never felt more comfortable in my own skin and that’s a really nice place to be.

It’s given me a huge appreciation for my Mom and all the moms that I know. Everyone has been so open with love and support.

Well said Ro, cheers to all the Mums out there! Let’s talk pregnancy rituals. Is there anything you try to do every day, be it a type of exercise, food, mediation etc?

Yes, especially during the first trimester, I was really sick and beyond tired. I just kept motivating myself to stay active, surf and walk my dog every day. When Ian got off work I would drag him out for a dog walk or surf again, he would happily oblige.

There were some days where I could barely go outside, those days, you listen to your body and submit to what’s happening. I have massive respect for all moms. Working at the Surf Ranch event I was definitely feeling green the whole time. I imagine if I were working and traveling this year it would have been pretty hectic.

A blessing in disguise to be home-bound this year. So, how does it feel surfing with a baby on board?

Well, I’ve definitely been putting the E7 E-bomb to the flexibility test!

Honestly, I’m having even more fun being in the water while pregnant, feeling like I’m sharing the experience with my boy. I’m still riding my push bike down to Lowers and catching a couple waves. I got boards from FireWire with a lot more volume and I’m just having fun, the Seaside and Beyond board has been my go to lately… it’s 45.5 litres of pure fun.

I want to stay in the ocean as long as I can, even if I’m just body surfing at the end. I’ve also been swimming laps; I’m drawn to the water that’s for sure and hopefully that becomes innate for our son.

Between Yours and Foulkey’s gene pool, the chances he’ll be an ocean lover are high! What are you most nervous about regarding pregnancy or being a new Mum?

Well, my mom told me I was a 10.5 pound baby and Ian wasn’t small either so there is that...ha! I think Ian and I are going into it with the mindset of letting go of control and listening to our intuition, hopefully we can pass on the good values our families taught us to our son and try our best for him every day.

And what are you most excited about?

I cannot wait to hold this little life inside of me in my arms and love on him and just stare at him. I look at our ultrasound photos and videos a lot and imagine what he is going to be like.

Very important question this one… how do you think your four-legged son, Mak, is going to cope having to share the attention?

Haha! Our dog Mak, his world is about to get rocked! Mak has been so awesome though, when I was sick during the first trimester, he wouldn’t leave my side. He would lay on top of me, but because my sense of smell was so acute, he would make me feel worse. Haha. But ya, he has been super protective of me and kept me motivated to get outside and be active with him.

Mak is going to love having a little bro to hang out with. Now, if you had to pick one trait from yourself, and one from Foulkey that your son will inherit… what would you choose?

I would love it if our son took after his dad in every way and if he had my sense of humour, I would be happy ‘cos we could laugh together.

Let’s talk post baby plans… With the CT due to kick off in Hawaii next month, what are you plans with the WSL and your spot in the commentary booth for the postpartum?

I am so stoked the WSL tour is kicking off soon! I’ve missed everyone so much, definitely a year that has put how fortunate we are into perspective. I got the call up to go to Maui, so I’m stoked. If Pipe hasn’t been completed, I’ll hop over to Oahu and work the event as the dates overlap.

Then I’ll probably have to sit a few events out. I still really want to do the Olympics, that’s my goal postpartum. Hopefully do some studio gigs in between and then getting back to work for the back half of the season would be amazing… maybe even before. Who knows!? I’m going to have to see how delivery and postpartum goes.

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Your son is destined for a well-travelled childhood to some incredible places, is the plan to take him on the road with you?

We definitely want to take him on as many adventures as possible. I am so looking forward to taking him home to South Africa.

Lucky guy. Are there any parents/athletes you’re looking to for inspiration or guidance right now? Be it juggling your career and soon-to-be Mum Life, or just motherhood in general?

Wow moms are incredible! Thank your mom today for all she has done for you!

I think Serena Williams is such an amazing woman. It’s also been fun to see Kelia Moniz be pregnant and so open about the experience with her being a few months ahead of me. Then there’s Bethany Hamilton, expecting her 3rd now too! So, there are so many women to look to along the journey.

Last one… and we know we are pressing our luck here... but, how are you going with picking a name? Can you give us any clues?

Well Ian’s best friend gave him the name Julio and our 3-year-old niece picked the name Peanut Butter, so he has been Julio Peanut Butter for a while now. We are open to name suggestions…

Congratulations Rosy and Ian, we are so excited for your little man to enter the world.