For those of you who are going through a pregnancy while also juggling a toddler, I thought you would appreciate this...
Now that I'm on my second pregnancy, I feel as if I'm qualified to give a newbie the pros and cons of pregnancy with and without a toddler.
The first time around, pregnancy was tough, harder than the second mostly because I had no idea what to expect. Such bizarre thoughts had crossed my mind and I'm kind of embarrassed to admit them...
Would I even like my new baby?
What if the baby comes out totally weird looking?
Would I get my body back?
What exactly does a contraction feel like? For the record, let me tell you that not ONE person had the answer to this one right, as far as I'm concerned. A contraction felt NOTHING like a period cramp. NOTHING. Maybe amplified by one billion, but I don't find the two comparable AT ALL. These might be the same people who say that they loved being pregnant and "glowed" the entire time. And more power to them. I can't say I'm one of them. Instead, I'm a hot mess when my body is creating life.
While these questions and worries sound off the wall now, they were rational to me at the time as a person who had never been there before. There is a first time for everything, and I would've had just as many questions albeit different ones, had I been running a marathon for the first time, or flying on an airplane for the first time or planning a wedding. It is in our nature to surround ourselves with what we are going through at the time...and then, we forget all about it, once it's passed.
So, while the worries of my first pregnancy are long gone (I know now that labor is the worst pain in the world, and having a baby is the hardest work I will ever do but so worth it), the stresses of a second pregnancy bring on a completely different set of issues.
While pregnant with Emily, I had the advantage of being able to simply veg out and watch TV all day if I was tired, but my little red-haired diva keeps me on my toes and always has me going. So, on a mission to wear her out one day last week, I took he to the Children's Museum. It was a crisp but sunny day, so the walk from the train to the museum was enjoyable. But, I had to pee soooo bad, and I was feeling extra short on brain cells this particular day (one of pregnancies many symptoms). While pushing her in the stroller, I accidentally stepped on the wheel and slipped. I caught myself before I hit the ground but I had an entirely different problem to deal with: somewhere during my big wheel slip I peed my pants. Literally wet myself. Luckily I was wearing my go-to "active wear," and I don't think it showed through my black yoga pants, but it was quite uncomfortable walking through the museum for a couple of hours with pee pants.
It's a known fact that late in pregnancy, a woman can be a bit absent-minded. Well, this is me on an average day, so imagine me when I'm 32 weeks pregnant. It's scary. Later that afternoon, when it was time for Em and I to leave the museum and head back to the train, I reached in my purse for my keys. But, I couldn't find them anywhere. I could feel my heart start to race and the frustration grow, and soon I was sitting on the cement sidewalk emptying out the belongings inside my purse. Had anyone given me the wrong look at this point, I'm pretty sure I'd have gone wild on them.
After not finding my keys in my purse, I reluctantly pushed Em in the stroller back to the museum and spoke with a lovely gal who said she would look out for them and call me if she found them. I walked back out into the fresh air, took a deep breath and sat down at a nearby table so Em could have her picnic lunch. I had succumbed to the idea that I'd be leaving my car at the train station and walking back to the house and I was fine with it. And then, as I was pulling one of Em's snacks out of my purse, I realized there was another pocket that I hadn't checked. Sure enough the keys were right were I left them...in the front pocket that I somehow didn't check because I was too flustered.
Your mind tends to be filled a little more during a second pregnancy, because you've got your older kid to think about and their needs to tend to.
The worst part about this story is that I notified my husband about losing my keys and I had to tell him they were with me all along. This isn't anything new for him as he has seen me lose stuff in the past, and he is one of those really nice people that never gets frustrated. He's so nice in fact, that he probably would've blamed the pocket for magically moving at some point during the museum trip, just to make me feel better.
So, while I may have the experience of a first pregnancy under my belt, I've got a little one to suck more brain cells from my already diminishing mind.