Ozzy Osborne – Crazy Train
“I’m goin’ off the rails on the crazy train.”
It’s been a while since I’ve written because so much has been happening. The holidays and January were absolute madness around my house with family visiting, reports and plans that needed to be completed at work, and with our son being on break from pre-school. I also needed some time to wrap my head around the fact that we’re going to become a family of four!
Yes, there is actually another soul out there as brave as my son who is willing to join our family or as I like to call it “The Crazy Train”. We are over the moon about our new baby especially after the devastation we endured early last year (more here). We are also wondering how on earth we’re going to manage two kids when our one bossy, smart-mouthed toddler is already checkmating us all over the chessboard. [Jesus, take the wheel!]
Worries aside, the truth is that the thing I can’t get over is how different this pregnancy has been from my first. With our first one, I didn’t even know I was pregnant for about two months and I kept on going as if nothing up until the day I had him. With this pregnancy, there is a constant reminder sitting right in my throat (puke) and a literal pain in my ass (thanks sciatic nerve). Besides the physical symptoms, here are some other notable differences between the first and second pregnancies as experienced by yours truly.
1. There Is No Time To Spare
With my first, I had nothing to focus on but my pregnancy. I took pictures of my belly every month, looked endlessly through Pinterest for ideas, thought of cute ways to break the news to my family, lathered myself in oils and lotions to prevent stretch marks, looked endlessly through reviews before deciding on items for my registry, anticipated my next doctor’s appointment, and just marveled at being pregnant. This time around, time is of the essence! Between a full-time, deadline-driven, managerial job, friends, family, birthdays, holidays and our three-year old, there is just no time to do anything that isn’t essential. We’re in survival mode and nothing matters but staying alive to repeat it all the next day. On most days, all I think about is how I’m goin’ off the rails on the crazy train.
2. N-A-P-S Be Gone
Naps people, naps. In a far, far away land called first-time pregnancy, I was able to use all of my spare time to nap. I’d purr like a cute little kitten on my couch after work or during the weekends. This is a thing of the past. My sweet second child has to hold on tight to that umbilical cord as I scramble around like a crazy cat jumping from task to task.
Post-work naps have been replaced by insanity. I’m making dinner for a toddler who will surely reject it and ask for a snack instead. I’m packing lunches for the next day, jotting down important details like whether he needs to wear a certain color or bring a toy to Show and Share. Bath time wars will ensue as our son screams that he doesn’t want to take a bath because he doesn’t like water (who says that?) He will scream, he will cry, he will bargain about the amount of books he can read for bedtime, and he will insist on putting his pajamas on himself. Finally, he will fall asleep and I will marvel at how much I adore him. I will do all that and then some, but nap I will not. Expect none of those with your second pregnancy.
3. No One Cares As Much
I was a celebrity the first time I was pregnant. Everyone constantly asked me questions about how I felt and new details of my baby. People constantly commented on how beautiful I looked and how I glowed. This time I wonder, “does anyone remember I’m pregnant?”
The second time around, you are not a beginner anymore – you are a seasoned parent. The truth is that people don’t care as much about how you’re feeling and whether your baby is now the size of a mango or a papaya. Besides, you don’t look as cute (probably due to no N-A-P-S), so people are just wondering when it’ll be over. They want to know when you’ll be back to being daytime Princess Fiona and not sunset Princess Fiona.
4. The Guilt Consumes You
I know I’m probably not the first or millionth woman to feel this way, but I sure feel like it. Most days, I’m more worried about relishing my final months with my first-born as my only baby than worrying too much about my second baby. Dare I say, some days I feel completely consumed by guilt and feel that the only way to curve that guilt is to give my first-born all of the attention, all of the love, all of the time. I hold him longer at night, I smother him with kisses, I tell him I love him until he wants to puke. All of the guilt of taking away his only-child status is then followed by guilt about not giving my second child the love and nurturing he/she deserves. I wonder if I will love my second baby as much as my first. I know the fact is that I will, but even wondering brings about more guilt. Guilt followed by guilt. It is a vicious cycle that you are more likely to experience during your second pregnancy.
However, all of this doesn’t matter in the end. I know this and any second-time Mom should too. In the end, the worry, the guilt, the lack of time, the madness, the love, it all falls into place. We are able to expand our hearts and our abilities in ways that we never could have imagined. Yes, I will probably go off the rails on the crazy train, but what good is life without a little madness? Yes, the pregnancy experience might be different, but I know that for me these things are guaranteed:
- I will make it all work.
- My love and passion toward both my children will always be the same: all-consuming.