Photo credit: Sunkissed and Free Photography
Pregnant with a Toddler
I didn’t have an easy pregnancy with my son. It was overshadowed by previous struggles to become pregnant and lots of anxiety about how I would handle being a mother for the first time. However there’s a stark difference between how I managed that stress (ie pedicures and sleeping in LATE on days off work) to now. My sweet son is 13 months old and I am rounding out my first trimester with hopefully his healthy sibling. Things are quite a bit different when I don’t get to be as selfish, for lack of a better term, as I was the first go around.
There’s no glow.
I AM TIRED. Like a fall asleep on my yoga mat during abs at Stroller Strides tired. Before I baked my husband various treats and made complex meals on days off. Tonight I served freshly baked frozen pizza. I fully believe that when you use the oven it means it’s homemade. And it was spinach pizza so practically a salad.
My son still needs his mother.
Ahhh such is the pure self-centeredness of toddlerhood. He doesn’t care that I am maxed on Diclegis (my saving grace nausea script) or that his chicken nuggets make me wanna hurl. Fortunately, veteran moms assure me that he won’t remember that I laid on the couch on a particularly bad day of morning sickness, but rather that we cuddled while watching a fire engine (obsession of the moment) on youtube.
I embrace my flaws better.
I am coming to grips in a whole new way with the idea that I am not the mother I imagined I would be. My son loves pouches of premade food. He isn’t eating handmade fruit snacks from the organic garden we planted together. (Because babies are totally into that kind of thing). I don’t have a brand new Pinterest worthy sensory-motor craft each day for after naptime. My first and only foray with homemade play dough resulted in a near vet visit for our dog and a crying toddler. But, I can amazon prime anything with lightning speed. Don’t be jealous. We all have our gifts.
My fears are different.
I have mostly found my stride as the mother of one, but knowing all of it is about to change is overwhelming. The nuts and bolts of parenting a newborn don’t scare me anymore, but the fear of not being able to balance two tiny people sure does. People say it, but does love really multiply rather than divide? How will I have enough mental and physical energy to give both kids what they need? I guess I will just have to face these fears head on. Good thing life is dealt one card at a time.
I find it’s so easy to get bogged down by the daily teething, laundry, errands race of it all. I often forget to slow down and appreciate the beautiful life I get to live. Prayer, journaling and exercise are my centering activities however imperfectly I complete them. The occasional mug cake helps too when wine isn’t an option. For now I will have to float along on grace and let myself off the hook a little. I have a helpful and loving husband (who is dealing with my random outbursts of tears like a pro) and a beautiful healthy son. At the end of each day I know I loved them both fiercely and did the best I could. I have decided that will be my enough.