Updated: Jul 7, 2022
Every woman, every body, every pregnancy, every labour, every baby, every family is different and unique. Here are some of my thoughts on why/how this second pregnancy has been more challenging than my first one.
Although there haven't been any complications yet 🙏🏼, I do feel like this second pregnancy has been more challenging than my first one. Here are some of the main reasons:
Fatigue is pretty common in pregnancy, especially in the first trimester. While pregnant for the first time, I was exhausted all the time... So exhausted that 7:00 pm became my new bedtime. This time around, fatigue has been a main pregnancy symptom from the start. However, there is a little one who needs my attention 24/7 and who has a lot of energy. So I don't have the luxury of resting or even going to bed whenever I feel like it. The fact that my daughter is also a low total sleep baby and a little girl who goes to bed late doesn't help either.
I think having a little one to take care of, makes pregnancy more challenging. I haven't had much time to read all the articles that the app tracking the progress of the pregnancy recommends me to read. I have to admit I have even forgotten how far along I am sometimes. Pretty much my whole focus and attention are on my daughter. As a result , I sometimes can't help but to feel guilty about it and to worry about how I'm going to manage to give all the attention my two children will need from me.
It's not a secret that pregnancy hormones can be a bit too much to handle. It’s easier to feel overwhelmed or to have more intense reactions to feelings, emotions and certain situations. Well, if you factor in the fact that this time around I also have a little one who needs me to be able to co-regulate and learn how to manage her own emotions, which can be quite intense; then being able to remain calm and be there for my daughter, and even for my husband, has definitely been a challenge during this second pregnancy. And then again, this is one of the many aspects that has made me feel mom-guilt several times.
I've had lots of nausea this time around as well, so I don't feel that well, especially in the mornings. It was pretty bad since very early in the pregnancy (I even started feeling nauseous before taking a pregnancy test). I started feeling better around week 14; but then the nausea came back around week 18, and I'm still trying to find something that can make me feel better. While pregnant for the first time, I didn't have any nausea at all or any morning sickness. I also enjoyed food a lot more than this time around, which is something I missed from my first pregnancy 😂.
To all of the points listed above, I think it's also important to add that I've been very anxious and nervous during this second pregnancy. I worry about the transition from 1 to 2 kids and how it will go, whether or not I'll be able to cope with everything that involves having a newborn while having a toddler that will need me to be there for her more than ever before. I worry about labour and how it will go this time. Being an expat mom, I'm still trying to figure out what to do with my daughter if I go into labour at night; or if I have to stay in hospital for a few days like I had to when I had my daughter.
Last but not least, I also worry about the way my relationship with my daughter will change. I love the relationship we have at the moment, although it can feel a bit too much sometimes, I wouldn't like that to change drastically.
Having said that, amongst all the anxiety, fear, sadness, guilt and chaos, I do have to say that I'm pretty excited to meet our newest member of the family. I'm also really looking forward to seeing my daughter as a big sister as I know she will be the best one ever.
I also have to say that I have a whole new perspective on parenting and a better understanding of normal infant sleep, which I believe will really help me adjust better as a mom of two.
I know this transition will be challenging and it will take time for everyone in our family to adjust to the change and find our new place as a family of four; but I also know we will be okay and we'll do our best.
In the end, that's all we can do right?
Note: I haven't mentioned any of my worries regarding my relationship with my husband and being able to be there for him as I feel like that's a new post itself; or the increased mental load when managing not only my medical appointments but also my daughter's and everything else in between. It's A LOT.