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As photographer Erin Dietrich nears her due date, the South Carolina mom is finding it increasingly difficult to sleep through the night. But, what's keeping her occupied during the sleepless nights of late pregnancy is her ability to commiserate with a pregnant giraffe more than 700 miles away in New York.
"It's the most ridiculous thing, but in the middle of the night when I couldn't sleep, I'd be like, 'Oh, let me check on April and see if she's had her baby yet,'" Dietrich told TODAY Parents.
April the Giraffe has gained a large fan base in recent weeks, after her keepers at the Animal Adventure Park began live streaming footage of the pregnant mammal in hopes of broadcasting her delivery.
While April's pregnancy should last about 15 months, Dietrich is due on March 14. And, at 39 weeks pregnant, the mother-of-three and her husband, Scott Dietrich, were struck with an idea — to order a giraffe mask online and spoof April's live video feed on Facebook for their family and friends.
The video, which shows Dietrich pacing her bedroom, dancing and rocking in a chair — all while donning a giraffe mask — has received nearly 30 million views, causing Dietrich to be flooded with messages of encouragement and appreciation for bringing something funny and positive to so many Facebook feeds.
"Our life is just a circus from sun up to sun down every day," said Dietrich. "We try not to take life too seriously and we try to have fun...so to lighten people's days — that makes me very happy."
As Dietrich awaits the birth of her own son, who she plans to name Porter, she says she's continuing to monitor her friend, April the Giraffe.
"Now it's just a race against the clock — who will have their baby first? Me or April?" said Dietrich. "I'm kind of hoping we have them on the same day. I feel like we're each other's support system at this point. All night long, she's all I have."