A slightly above-average achiever's guide to parenting
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The second time around
March 12, 2016
They say that second kids get the short end of the stick when it comes to Mom's attention. In the same way that I didn't "get" what life was like with kids generally, I didn't "get" what it meant to be a second time mom until I got pregnant again. The best way to explain is to tell you what happened at my first "big" OBGYN appointment for this pregnancy, aka the first time I could possibly hear the heartbeat.
Nurse Practiconer: Do you have any questions? Concerns?
Me: No, not really. No alcohol, no lunch meat, right?
Nurse Practiconer: Well, there's a full list of the "dos and don'ts" of pregnancy...
Me: I was joking, sorry. But no, I think I'm all set (checking watch)
Nurse Practiconer: Okay, well, the last thing we can do is listen to the heartbeat. Now, this early along, there's a chance you won't hear it, so don't get upset if you don't. It doesn't mean anything is wrong, it's just often times we can't hear it due to the babies position. So if you'll just lie back.
Me: Um...is this one medically necessary? I mean, I'm happy to do it. But I'm also running late for a meeting. And we'll get another crack at this at the next appointment, right? I mean, frankly, at ALL of my next appointments?
Nurse Practiconer: (looking only slightly horrified) Oh, well, yeah. Sure. I guess.
Me: Okay, thanks. LATER!
Sigh. My poor second child. The kid isn't even here, and already is getting ignored.
But in all seriousness, there have been so many differences this time around as compared to when I was pregnant with Chewie. And as much as I don't want to get in the habit of comparing kids....here's a comparison chart of how these two stack up:
FIRST CHILD vs. THIS CHILD
First child: We had an adorable name "Chewie" to call the baby in utero and used it all the time.
Second child: I keep constantly referring to my second child as "this one".
First child: I dutifully avoided lunch meat, raw eggs, alchohol, fish, and even rosemary "just to be safe".
Second child: I had a bacon and egg sandwich with runny eggs, finished it, and THEN Chewie's dad asked if I was supposed to have it. Instead of freaking out, I asked if he was going to eat his bacon.
First Child: I always knew not only how far along I was in my pregnancy, I could tell you immediately how large the baby was compared to a piece of fruit.
Second Child: I'm *pretty* sure I've started the third trimester, but not quite positive.
First Child:I always tried to make a conscious effort to sleep on my left side because apparently that gets the most and oxygen circulating to baby.
Second Child: I am thrilled when I get sleep. period.
First Child: I told everyone my due date EXACTLY.
Second Child: I am now referring to it generally as "around memorial day", because I realize 'this one' is going to show up whenever it pleases.
First Child: I stopped working 2 weeks before my due date, because I was worried that the baby might come early and I wanted to have all my work wrapped up before then.
Second Child: I migh just work until my water breaks so I can have all my maternity leave, you know, WITH the baby.
First Child: I was blissfully ignorant of how much my life was about to change.
Second Child: I am keenly aware of how much my life is about to change.
While some things have changed, the excitement for our new addition has stayed the same. And although I joke about being a bit more terrified this time around (because despite the claim of "pregnancy amnesia", I remember my birth and those early days all too well), I'm looking forward to those newborn snuggles, and of course all the binge watching of Netflix I'll get to do when Chewie is in daycare.