First of all if your reading this than your either expecting your second or your thinking of having a second. So congrats! I always wanted four kids. Yes four. I wanted more siblings when I was younger and I swore I’d give that to my children. Then I had one. Then I had two. Two is a game changer folks. The best game changer life can ever give you but all the same, a game changer. After my first turned one, I finally, finally started thinking of having another child. It took me a year to even let it run through my mind. I guess they call that motherhood because if you recall I always wanted four. It’s not that I didn’t think motherhood would be hard, of course I did. I just thought I’d naturally be good at it because it’s all I ever wanted. I know, your probably laughing so hard right now that your recent need to run to the bathroom to pee is making you run for the bathroom right now. To think anyone could ever be “naturally” good at motherhood is something to laugh about. I see mothers out at stores and at parks all the time looking like they are mother of the year. Calm, cool and actually having fun with their kids. Sure that is me some of the time, but not all of the time. It’s just taken me some time to accept it. To accept that I don’t love 100% percent, and any mother out there that says they do then they are more than welcome to come clean up the puke that happens at only the most inconvenient times. They are more than welcome to come and discipline my kids so they grow up to be respectful and kind little people.
I think it’s only normal to panic a little after you find out you are expecting number two. I mean the announcement alone was so different for us. For my daughter my husband and I anxiously waited for that test to turn positive at least 20 times throughout our experience. Come my second, it was one stick and my husband received a text with a picture of it at work on a Monday morning. I could go on and on about the challenges of one child verses two but why would I want to scare anyone. So instead I thought of a few things that aren’t too scary. They are normal expectations, beautiful expectations and just like that we learn how to mother one, we also learn how to mother two. It’s a pretty amazing process actually.
Expect to be overwhelmed. Overwhelmed with wondering if it is at all possible for you to love another little one as much as you love your first.
After the excitement of knowing we were growing our family the worry set in. I loved my daughter so much I couldn’t even fathom the thought of loving another little one as much. I was so scared the relationship I worked so hard to develop with my daughter was going to suffer. I was so afraid she would feel left out or unloved. I was also afraid that I would bond more with this new baby than I did with my daughter because I suffered from post-partum. Then on the other hand I worried about getting post partum depression again. I didn’t want that experience to stop me from growing our family and I can whole heartedly scream at the top of my lungs today that luckily none of those worries came true. My relationship with my daughter did not suffer, she does not and never did feel unloved and I did not bond more with my son than I did with my daughter. I just bonded differently. If it’s one thing I’ve learned since having two is that you can absolutely love each one just as much. Your relationship is just different with each child. I think it’s only normal for any one expecting another to worry about how she is going to love that much more but you know what? I truly believe with every birth your heart just grows even more.
Expect to want to be with your first child as much as possible.
I planned so many play dates and spent as much time as I possibly could with my daughter when I was expecting my son. I just wanted every single second we had alone to be cherished and never be forgotten. I may never forget those moments but I’m sure my daughter does. I still ask her three years later don’t you remember when it was just me and you? Nope. Don’t stress yourself out over that one on one time enjoy every second you can and just be happy to live in those moments.
Expect to be in bed exactly one second after you tuck your first child in.
The tiredness is taken to a whole new level. When pregnant with number one I was able to come home from work and climb into bed. I was able to sleep in on weekends. Not just sleep, but I was able to just be lazy when I needed to be lazy and eat cereal for dinner when I felt like it. There is no being lazy this time around. I believe the first trimester was truly the worst, your already tired while your new little bean makes a home in utero. The tiredness gets better, however by seven when I would tuck my daughter in to bed, the only comfortable position for me was laying down in my own bed. The whole entire pregnancy. I think between not really being able to rest as much as I could the first time around I was just spent by the evening hours. Oh and the Momma brain, it gets worse. Sorry I can’t lie.
Expect to nest ten times worse than you did the first time around.
I didn’t push my husband to get the nursery done as much as I did with baby number one. Lets face it the baby stays with you the first few months anyways so for me it was more important for me to arrange my house for it to work for our new little family. We bought a new home so we then had two floors. I just felt the “need” to be ready. I bought a used changing table and set one up in my office so I wouldn’t have to go up and down the stairs, I put changing stations (baskets with changing gear) around the house. I tried desperately to potty train my first (major fail) and even bought a second diaper bin for downstairs. So though I didn’t bug my husband about completing the baby’s room (OK maybe a little) I still felt the need to clean, organize and get ready ten times more than I did the first time around.
Expect to worry even more than you did with your first.
Just when you think you can’t worry anymore than you did once you had your first. It doubles. It keeps you up even more at night. Will I be able to handle two at the grocery store? Will my oldest run into the street while I’m putting the baby in the car? Will my oldest get enough attention now that baby is here? Will my husband and I ever get a minute alone again? All normal stuff. All stuff you learn to get past and figure out. I may let the worry keep me up at night at times but I don’t let it run my life like I used to. See the thing is……you’ll figure out it out just like you did the first time around. We all do, and you’ll be wonderful at it.