Number 2! Growing up, I always thought parents sit down to carefully plan how they want their kids spaced and their body responds to this plan. Ha! I now know that only one thing makes babies so you can’t be “walking” that path and think a baby can’t be made.
Did I say growing up in that first paragraph? Scratch that! It was still in mind even as an adult. I’d seen some people in various circles I am in have their second kid with a spacing of less than two years and I wondered, how did they let that happen? That can never happen to me! Really, Cheryl, really?
So I’d been working on getting rid of my mummy tummy. Nine months postpartum, I could finally wear some blouses without a corset comfortably. I wasn’t there yet, but I’d made good progress, yeey!
Suddenly, about 11 months postpartum, my tummy was beginning to bulge. I was so upset! I didn’t want to pick my corset again so I decided to ignore it for a while. Then I missed my period but I felt it was nothing to think about because my period hadn’t been regular yet anyway. About 2 weeks later, I was so ready to pick my corset again. I didn’t like the way this belly business was going. Then the Cheryl inside me asked, what if you’re pregnant? I laughed at her. Too known Cheryl always thinking weird stuff. Yeah, she was right sometimes, but definitely not this time! She persisted though. To satisfy her, I decided to get a pregnancy test kit. I was so ready to laugh at her in the face and then I can happily pick my corset.
I bought the kit one evening and tested in the morning. It was a 2 in 1 pack and funny, I mistakenly spoilt the first one. I picked the second, peed more carefully and waited for it to read.
Double lines? No. This wasn’t happening. I couldn’t even process it. I went to the room, dropped the results in front of hubby who was asleep and waited. He woke up and goes like what do two lines mean again? This was so funny in contrast to number 1 eh. Today, he doesn’t know what two lines mean. I’m sure I gave a sarcastic answer. Then questions, when did I start suspecting , etc. Charley, all that while, I was just looking at my 11 month old and saying to myself : he’s such a baby! How can I do this to him?
And thus, the journey began! How was it? It was a rollercoaster.
Physically, it was mostly okay except for a few unexpected pains that took me to the hospital.
Emotionally? Hmph! Half the time, I felt so guilty. I felt so bad for my baby. He’ll be losing all the attention. I also felt embarrassed, especially when people made some comments. Granted, they should have been minding their own business…but…well…it did affect me. There were definitely some days I was excited about the fact that I was going to be carrying a tiny baby again soon. There’s just something magical about handling a newborn!
Around the end of the second trimester, we decided to stop breastfeeding. Once again, I was filled with so much guilt. I knew it was going to be hard on my boy. Around that time, he had already dropped most of his nursing times except for the ones just when I arrived from work (or any other outing) and just before sleep. As usual, I read a lot, prepped my mind and all of that. Well, guess what? By day 2 or so, he didn’t care about breast milk anymore. Just like that oh! I so wanted to do “sankofa” but hubby advised against it. Around that time, he also became a daddy’s boy. He’d want to go out with dad all the time, want dad to carry him, want dad to feed him, etc. I should have rejoiced because I didn’t have that much strength to be handling a boisterous one year old anyway. Instead, I felt my son to whom I previously meant the world to had rejected me! Now, when I think of it, it’s funny but at the time, it so wasn’t funny.
In the end, I sailed through. I prayed to God each time I sank low and asked him to give me strength. Did I always open my heart to receive the strength from God? I will say a downright no, and on such days, I sulked. I think it’s okay to be true to our emotions sometimes but it’s best to pick ourselves up knowing that our ways are not His ways so we just have to trust in Him through it all. Today, I feel glad about the timing because eventually, I would have wanted a second born anyway. Now, I have those newborn days behind me and can do other things particularly with my career while I watch a 27 month old and an 8 month old jump on my head.
So is carrying number 2 really easier like they say? Well it depends. I can’t speak to the scenario where you are all set and ready because that was obviously not my experience. So if you are surprised like I was, you might have some emotional lows along the line. Then there’s carrying number 1 especially when number 1 is still pretty much a baby. Other than that, you go through all the normal pregnancy stuff. It only appears easier because you are not facing too many unknowns.
I’d drafted this post when a friend asked me how did I do it? How did I manage to have kids so close? Ha! I laughed. Well, the answer is simple! Do what you did to have the first. 😜 And if you are like me, doing what you are doing and thinking there’s no way number 2 will happen…well…I will leave you to conclude the sentence.