Pregnancy: It's so different the second time round

Friday, June 7, 2013

My second pregnancy has been very different from my first. The motions and physical changes and feelings that my body has gone through has been pretty much the same for both, it's just that my circumstances have changed and well, me in general, because now I'm already a Mum. 

I remember my first pregnancy was spent pouring over pregnancy books and apps, I spent a lot of time googling every little twinge or niggle worried about what it could mean. I was paranoid about every food that I thought was somewhat suspicious. I had lists of baby stuff to buy and I spent hours looking at baby nursery designs and cute decor. I was working, but only part time, and I was studying as well. Even with that on my plate I still had plenty of time to put my feet up, to watch some movies, to sleep in, to take day time naps, to write my birth plan, to read books and just to enjoy the last of the me time. Joel was always worried about me, if I was lifting too much or standing too long and was always offering cups of teas, running out to the shops to pick up my latest cravings and foot massages. We had deep discussions about our philosophies on raising kids and wondered what life would be like with a baby. 

Ohhh how the times have changed.

I'm no longer freaking out (as much) about the labour and birth, I've done it once, I can do it again right. I rarely check my pregnancy apps, I have no idea what fruit size my baby is at right now. I haven't even picked up a pregnancy book and I have not once googled some strange rare pregnancy disorder that I am paranoid that I might have. Sleeping at nights seems to elude me, and then there is a little boy up sometimes in the middle of the night wanting cuddles, he is then always ready to chit chat at 6.00am. Day naps have become pretty much non-existent, for me, and then Ezra has decided that 45 minutes is long enough for him. My birth plan consists of saying, lets get this baby out as quickly and naturally as possible (and as painlessly of course). 

This pregnancy I run, not by choice, but I chase down a runaway toddler. I lift, about 11 kilos of toddler, and lug him up and down the stairs. When I have cravings for chocolate I eat it whilst hiding in the confines of the pantry to keep away from tiny prying eyes and little hands signalling they want to share, no Mummy needs this chocolate...all of it. Taking the time to stop and talk and prepare for the new addition is challenging, once all the parenting duties are done, we just are too exhausted. I have to ask for cups of teas these days, there is no time for personal cravings and I'm not sure when I last had a foot rub. 

The second pregnancy isn't bad, it is just really different. It definitely has its more challenging aspects when you have another child, especially a young toddler. Your time is no longer your own. You just do what needs to be done, and often surprise myself with what I can accomplish. Other days, I resign to the fact that I need to rest, and battle with 'Mothers guilt' of letting my child watch too much Shaun The Sheep. I have to remind myself that I am already the Mother of two, and I need to make sure I'm taking care of myself and considering the needs of both of my children, not just the one who is making the most noise. With those challenges also comes the confidence of being experienced in being pregnant. I have a greater understanding of the capacity of my own body and I know the signs that I need to listen to. The thought of breastfeeding is no longer a weird foreign concept, I've been through the wars with it, and I won. I have learnt to appreciate every quiet and peaceful moment, because I know what having a newborn means. 

I'm so excited about adding another member to our family. I can't wait to kiss her little cheeks. But, she does not occupy my thoughts every moment like her brother did. She will be loved, but she won't be the centre, the focus the only one. She will have to share. Somedays it is hard to imagine how we will have the time and energy to pour into both of our children, but I'm sure we can work it out. 

Does this sound like your first and second pregnancies? 

Who is in charge this time round? 
Karen xx 

7 comments on "Pregnancy: It's so different the second time round"
  1. Yes!!! Sounds like how things are for us right now:) I'm 33 weeks with my second. When are you due?

  2. Yes, a bit. I look back now and think how precious I seemed in the first pregnancy - "couldn't" do this or that - whereas in my second pregnancy I was looking after a toddler and in my third pregnancy, I was looking after two kids and working part time. But I did differ from you in that in my second pregnancy I was completely freaking out about the birth because my first was quite traumatic.
    Congratulations and all the best. You will be able to give both your children the time and attention they need - it will just be different dividing your time. And you'll have all the love for them they could ever need and more xx

  3. I'm almost 38 weeks, so not far ahead of you!! Due on 25th June. It is so so different with a toddler dictator in the house hey!! x Karen

  4. Yes I was so 'precious' but I guess that just comes with the territory!! Thanks for the encouragement Francesca, its always nice to hear from Mums who have been there and done that!! x Karen

  5. I'm in my first, obviously, but my app-checking and incessant googling has definitely become less and less as time has passed. I'm guessing my second pregnancy won't include any of that! It's just such a strange (yet exciting) experience to go through, and I wanted all the information I could get at first. But now I'm getting more comfortable in my body changes and freaking out less haha


  6. OMG YES! I'm currently 23 weeks into my second which is another boy. I'm already feeling guilty for not giving him the attention we did when my first was in my womb. Hubby and I haven't even talked about baby names, discussed where we need to set up a new nursery since the eldest room is now a toddler's room. I guess its a combination of being there before so knowing what to expect and not unable to talk about newborn / pregnancy discussions cause the toddler takes up all our time. I fear how its going to be once bub is out and there's the feeding schedule every 2-3 hours 24/7 therefore not much sleep at night and then a toddler who wants to play during the day. I await reading about your experience as you will get there before I do .. hehee

  7. Oh my goodness Karen, you have put in to words exactly how I feel about this second pregnancy but have not been able to properly express myself. Every single word of it, its like reading about my own life! 1000x yes to everything you have written!