Making room for baby

In the days and weeks after I found out I was pregnant with my second child, I went through a series of panicked emotions – many of which have continued to haunt me throughout this second pregnancy. I know I’ve no one to blame but myself – for flooding my brain with negative thoughts – but I think these anxieties and doubts have made it extra hard to find a quiet, comfortable space for this new baby; not just in our small apartment, but in my mind, in my marriage and in my Bean’s daily existence.

Now that I have reached the relative safety of the 3rd trimester, I worry less about the pregnancy, but even more about how it will be as a SAHM to two: I worry about becoming a crappier wife and mother, I worry about the transition from a family of three to a family of four, about the inevitable exhaustion of a newborn and how it will affect everyone involved, I worry about Bean feeling jealous, unhappy, and/or neglected…

…and on the flip side, I worry that this baby already hasn’t been given the same start as Bean.  I haven’t been diligent about my vitamins, DHA, Folic Acid or water intake.  I’m not doing the prenatal yoga I did the first time around, or spending time each day relaxing – caring for myself and bonding with baby.

Sure, I think about baby each time he kicks me or pulls me up short of breath, but otherwise I am totally distracted from him by caring for Bean, and by the numerous other daily tasks to be attended to.  I know this is normal the second time around, but it still fills me with guilt.  I haven’t been fair to this little guy, and he hasn’t even been born yet.  We’ve hardly bonded, hardly gotten to know each other, and I’m already 29 weeks!  How did that happen so fast?

When I was pregnant with Bean, I went through the Hypnobabies Home Study Course and really enjoyed it.  In the end, my birthing time did not turn out the way I’d hoped, but I was still incredibly grateful for the peace of mind Hypnobabies gave me in the weeks leading up to Bean’s birth.  With that in mind, I’ve started the course again – this time with no expectations.  I use it to calm my mind, and make space in my day and in my mind and body for this poor baby who seems to have already pulled the short end of the pregnancy stick.

Each time I listen to the these intensely relaxing and meditative tracks, I feel that for a short time I have focused solely on doing something for THIS pregnancy and THIS baby.  I focus on me and on him and on us (though it’s still sometimes hard as Bean tends to crowd my mind most of the time), and I feel better for having made the time to do it.

I know it isn’t much, but it’s a start, right?  I want so much to better connect with this baby, and this pregnancy.  I want to set aside the trauma of my first birth experience, and remember that every delivery is different, every baby is different.  I want to stop worrying about what will be and just live in this moment.  I want to enjoy these last weeks of alone time with Bean – who is changing and growing so much, so fast, that it baffles the mind – while still making room in my life, and in my heart for this new baby who is coming whether I am ready for him or not.

I don’t know if meditations and hypnosis can accomplish all that, but like I said, it’s a start.

I wonder if any of you have experienced similar emotions with second pregnancies.  I would certainly love to hear about them if you have.

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About uncommonnonsense1

Stay at home mom of two.
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7 Responses to Making room for baby

  1. Courtney says:

    I felt everything you’re feeling. I still feel like Bryson is getting the short end of the stick. I think this is just how it is for second children. 😉

    I would tell you not to feel guilty, but I know that won’t help. Guilt comes with motherhood.

  2. Esperanza says:

    I have had a lot of the same feelings. My son is due in just over ten weeks. I oscillate between feeling terrified that something will happen before he arrives, to terrified that I won’t be able to handle it when he’s here. I worry that I’m not giving him the attention he deserves and that it will only get worse when he comes. I worry that I’m already not able to do the things I used to do with her, that I already tired more easily, that I don’t have the space for her in my lap, that I can’t hold her for as long or as easily. It’s really hard.

    Sometimes I worry that I’m focusing too much on my son just arriving safely, and that when he does I’ll be woefully unprepared. Maybe it’s my way of coping with how overwhelming the idea of parenting two feels.

    I also got the Hypnobabies program, but this is my first time. I’m having a hard time staying awake for the tracks and I worry I’m not getting enough out of it. I need to make it more of a priority. I’ll try to think of it as a time for just me and my baby. Thanks for that recommendation.

    • I believe we are due right around the same time…I’m due in late October.
      That is great that you are doing the Hynobabies program. I really do think it is wonderful for calming the mind a bit each day. Don’t worry about falling asleep, I do that often too. My one recommendation would be to try and find some time each week (even if it is just once or twice) to do a track during the day when you are more awake (I try and do it on the weekends when my husband is around in case Bean wakes up from a nap before I’m done). I focus on doing this with the tracks that are a little more instructive like the “Learning self hypnosis” one.

  3. Alissa says:

    I don’t have direct experience with this but my sister does. She talked to me about all these things when pregnant with my second nephew. The disconnect, the feeling of being less involved with this new baby, almost forgetting about preparing. She was so busy chasing after her first son that she didn’t spend much time bonding with her tummy baby. She also felt the guilt. She was worried she wouldn’t be able to give this new baby as much attention and worried about how the baby would affect her first born. It’s all natural. I know that doesn’t make you feel better about it, but I think you are on the right track with trying to spend even a few minutes a day with this new baby. You will be engulfed in him once he arrives, so don’t feel bad about spending extra time with Bean if you need to.

  4. J o s e y says:

    I haven’t reached the worry about 2 part quite yet (I think it doesn’t seem quite real yet that I’ll have 2 children in the next 5 months or so!), but I definitely have slacked on the prenatal vitamins and exercise and quiet, reflective bonding time…and yeah, it’s just different when you’re taking care of a toddler at the same time! I need to get back into my HB practice as well, to at least get that down time to concentrate on me and this baby. Thanks for the reminder!

  5. Deborah says:

    I swore I would not do this when I was pregnant with my second – she’d get just as much attention as my first! But it was just impossible. And also, I realized some of the fussing over what I ate & all really wasn’t necessary. It did come back to bite me, though, when she was born 4.5 weeks early and I had no room set up for her at all! That never would’ve happened with my first – we had the shower, we got the gifts, it was all set up.

    I have to say, though, since my daughter has arrived, it’s not a problem giving her equal attention. As a baby, she pretty much requires it, plus she doesn’t get on my nerves like a 4.5-year-old does, so that helps. She is cute and sweet and fun. So I think it will be okay.

  6. Foxy says:

    Such a raw truthful post. Emotions are so complicated and I can’t even begin to imagine the feelings that would overwhelm me if we ever have a second. I think that you are doing a great job of recognizing and giving your feelings the value that they deserve, even if they are distressing. You are an incredible mother and I’m sure that your heart will grow larger than you could possibly imagine possible to accommodate this new baby. Xoxo – Foxy

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