***DISCLAIMER – These feelings were initial and not at all how I still feel about my sweet girl due October 19th.***
Finding out you’re pregnant with your second baby seems like it should be a very happy experience for most women in my position. I’m your typical married woman with 2 children. We have a very happy, stable blended family, and in most cases, finding out you’ll be welcoming in another little one would be a joyous occasion.
This was not initially the case for me. When I peed on that stick and I saw that little blue plus sign pop up almost immediately, my heart started racing and I had a mini meltdown. I haven’t been very open about these first feelings I experienced and I hope by sharing this, other moms out there feeling the same will feel less guilty, because I know I felt a lot of guilt for having them. Here are my 5 major reasons why I wasn’t excited about my second pregnancy:
Having a baby took a toll on my body. I gained about 40 pounds with my first daughter, along with several stretch marks and a tummy that looked somewhat deflated near the bottom, under my belly button. One of the main reasons I didn’t want to go through another pregnancy was for fear of increasing the stretch marks that already made me so self-conscious, making that withered balloon of a tummy look even sadder and dissipated. I had also only lost about half of the baby weight I gained with her and knowing I’d gain weight again really sunk me into a small depression.
I have heard a lot of women in my life talk about pregnancy as one of the best times in their life. They felt beautiful, glowing, full of life and energy, etc. I am not one of those women. Although I had some happy memories about being pregnant, most of them were clouded by all the negatives ones. I had awful sciatica, heartburn, and round ligament pain. When I got into the end of my second trimester I developed constant all-over back pain that never ceased and an intense pressure on my pelvic area that I constantly complained about as feeling as if my pubic bone were being broken. I didn’t want to deal with that again. It was a most unpleasant part of my life and I wanted no part of experiencing it for the second time.
As I said before, I have a blended family. I have a step-daughter who is 4 years older than my daughter. Transitioning from life with only one child part-time, to life with two children part-time and one child all the time was no easy feat. It took some getting used to and we experienced some pitfalls before we developed our groove. I was happy with this groove we had refined. I loved that both girls got to experience the best of both worlds, being siblings and only children all rolled into one. Having two kids to take care of ’round the clock seemed far too difficult a task for me, as selfish as that may sound. The ease of going from two to one consistently was perfect for me and I had no desire to change that comfortable routine.
Even though pregnancy is only 9 months out of your whole life, it can feel like an eternity while in the midst of it. I love wine. Love it. Wine makes me very happy. Going without it for 9 months is hard! I also love fair rides and roller coasters, roller skating and water slides, all things you can’t do while pregnant, and all things I missed while pregnant the first time. I would pout about not being able to partake in these activities with my family and friends, being fully aware of the importance of refraining. I never wanted to not be in full control of my body again.
I was truly scared that I would not have enough love in my heart to give than the love I already had for my husband, step-daughter, and daughter. How could I ever love another child as fiercely? I couldn’t. The thought alone terrified me, so avoiding it completely was a better plan. I had a pregnancy “scare” when my daughter was around 10 months old, and I remember having burst into tears imagining trying to love another one as much as I did my current two. When I found out it was a false alarm, I felt relief.
After the original shock of finding out I was pregnant for a second time after I gathered my thoughts and after things started going back to normal, all those preliminary feelings immensely subsided. I have to admit, sciatica developed earlier this time around than it did the first, I started showing earlier than I had before, I missed more fair rides and roller skating, and I developed quite a few more stretch mark trophies on my belly. This being said, it wasn’t as debilitating as I had remembered it. Yes, I’ve been uncomfortable and yes, I’ve gained some more weight. The thing is though, when I found out I was adding another darling little girl to our family, when we picked out her name, with every kick I feel from her inside me, I fall more and more in love with her. I have no question now that I won’t love her with the same ferocity and I’ll get over the fact that my tummy is striped and may be stretched out once she’s here. Now I can’t even imagine life without her being a part of it.
Moms. Please know it’s okay to have negative feelings. Please know that it’s okay to talk it out and to not let them build up. Please know that everything will work itself out and things will happen as they should. I’m a firm believer that everything happens the way it does because that’s exactly how it’s supposed to.