The first time you get pregnant, you have all of this anxiety and excitement for doing everything for the first time! You get to be a mom!! That thought is both wondrous and frightening depending on the day or time. I experienced all of the usual feelings; not being able to wait any longer to meet my baby girl, and also being so nervous because I wanted to be such a wonderful mom. Now that I have done all of that, I have a few different thoughts on becoming a second-time mom. How do I split that love with another child?
Currently, I am not even trying to get pregnant, but the conversation is a frequent one in our household. Every time we do talk about adding another tiny person to our family, I am left feeling two very strong feelings. First, I feel excited about the prospect of adding another tiny person to our family. Second, I feel a strange mix of sadness and fear about the fact that when I do have another tiny person, I will be sharing my love with two.
As I have looked around and shared this concern with others, I have found that it is VERY normal to have those feelings when preparing to welcome your second tiny human. I imagine the feelings are somewhat there with every addition, but moving from one to two is the first time they arise. Since I haven't done it myself, I got some advice from a mom close to me that just recently did that exact thing!
Q: Were you worried about loving a second baby as much as you did your first?
A: I loved my first so much when he was born! And somehow, each day that has gone by, I love him more and more. So, before my second was born, I feared my love for her would never catch up. Not "knowing" her yet, just didn't give me anything that I felt could match what I was feeling for my son while he was the only child.
Q: When did that feeling go away?
A: I stopped worrying about it the first time I felt baby girl kick inside me. I knew she was there and I already loved her SO much! Now it just seems ridiculous that I ever even thought about it. Now I worry about making sure they both know I love them because I never want my relationship with one child to hurt the other child's feelings. BUT, I feel that way because I love them both equally!
Q: How was it the first time you introduced your first child to his new sibling?
A: It was truly the most amazing thing I have ever experienced. It was truly magical having both of our babies in the room together for the first time. Words cannot express the emotions we were feeling as parents. There was no lack of love for either of our children.
Q: Since you are a couple months in now, what have you been most surprised about in your capability to love them both immensely?
A: Loving them both is so natural. I have always thought the term "my heart is going to explode" was super cheesy. But, now I finally understand it. Multiple times a day, I have a moment where I just can't believe that they are both here and both will call me mom!
Q: What are your words of advice for moms preparing themselves to welcome a second?
A: Soon after introducing my children to each other, my son was angry. He didn't want anything to do with me at the hospital. I was heartbroken. I spent a lot of time with my newborn (just as any mom with a newborn should) in the hospital feeling horrible for hurting my son. I would recommend that parents remember that most hard things we deal with as parents are phases. Immediately after we returned home, he was sweet again and has been the best loving big brother (give or take some moments). Each and every day has hard moments where I feel like a failure, and moments where I'm super mom, and feel like they both got the perfect amount of love that day. Just do your best and remember two things; your kids will forgive you when you mess up, and you are always doing better than you think!
Phew! Doesn't that make you feel so much better? I know that those same emotions will still probably be a reality when I am expecting a second baby, but my sweet friend's words are definitely helping me put my worries further in the back of my head. We are designed to create tiny humans, so I am sure that we have the capability to love them all too!
Featured Header Image PC: @kaleymunday
Written by: Alyssa Liston