So here I was… Expecting our much wanted second baby, but FREAKING out. I was drained from horrific morning sickness (morning, day and night sickness more bloody like!) and I was emotional, hormonal and confused. Why did I feel so scared?
As I’ve spoken about in previous blogs, I loved being a Mum to Lucas and he was my world. When he reached three years old and became more independent we were ready to extend our family and give him a brother or sister. I was extremely broody and already OBSESSED with babies, I couldn’t wait to bring another mini human into the world.
When I found out I was expecting, I was so happy, although ridiculously ill. Like many women, I suffered with horrendous sickness and was absolutely exhausted in the first trimester, it was also like having constant raging PMT. I’m pretty sure my family and friends thought I was mad and totally all over the place. (My sister felt FINE when she was pregnant, lucky cow! Can you tell I was jealous?!)
Anyway, in those early weeks of pregnancy, the more guilty I started to feel about having another baby and questions ran through my mind.
Was Lucas ready for a sibling?
Was I really ready?!
Would Lucas feel left out?
Could I actually love another baby as much as I loved my son?
Would I be able to give this baby the attention it needed?
Around my twenty week scan, I was feeling MUCH better physically and emotionally (thank the Lord!) and to be honest the rest of my pregnancy was a breeze. We found out we were having a baby girl which was amazing news. Although I genuinely didn’t mind what the sex was, – this meant lot’s of cute, girly purchases and a bedroom decorated for a little princess! Also, after some online research and talking to other mums, I soon realised it was normal to feel the way I had been when expecting a second bubba, so this gave me some comfort.
As Lucas was only three, he never seemed too bothered about having a new sister (I don’t think he really understood!) We spoke about it all the time, read all the ‘little sister’ books, he helped me get her things ready and watched my tummy grow HUGE but still had that ‘yeah OK mum, I’ll believe it when I see it’ attitude. When I went into labour slightly early, my mum picked up Lucas and I remember crying my eyes out, I had such bittersweet emotions. My baby girl was finally coming, but the next time I saw my son he would be a big brother and no longer my one and only baby.
Ava was born and I truly felt that instant, gooey, indescribable love for her. She was absolutely incredible and the worries I had through pregnancy subsided. I couldn’t wait for Lucas to meet her. I spent two days in hospital as I ended up having a c-section (you can read all about this if you fancy it in my previous blog post My C-section and trial VBAC experience) and although I missed my little boy so much I knew he was being well taken care of at home. I cherished my time on the post natal ward with Ava. I constantly cuddled and stared at her, established breastfeeding well and took in every ounce of how beautiful and perfect she was. When Lucas met his sister for the first time, he was so lovely with her and completely in awe. For me, it really was the most magical feeling in the entire world.
Lucas was great with Ava and although (mostly) gentle, I definitely think his way of fighting for attention was to see how high he could jump over her, leave a teddy ‘accidentally’ on her head or rock her baby bouncer way too hard (yes this required a lot of patience from a tired me!) The hardest part of going from one to two kids was definitely trying to split my time to make sure they both had my attention. Obviously I was recovering from an operation, breastfeeding and bonding with my newborn, but my son was JUST as important.
I tried to make sure I still played games, did bath time and bed as before and made sure we had some ‘mummy and son’ time too. I kept Lucas as involved with Ava as possible, asking him to pass me things such as nappies and wipes, helping me to bottle feed when I introduced formula.This helped him to feel extra important and know what a good big brother he was. One thing that I believed really helped his transition into a big bro may sound a bit mean, but we always shared little private jokes about Ava, we still do now! We would laugh at her funny newborn faces, her big burps, when she got older and started to babble funny words/try to crawl etc. If she wouldn’t go to sleep I would roll my eyes and say “Oh Lucas , that little sister of yours is a little madam isn’t she!” It made him laugh hysterically, he was so much more interested and thought of her as brilliant and funny and also that I was still ‘his’ mum too.
I have also been protective over Ava, but at the same time defensive over Lucas. I would obviously never allow him to harm her in any way and still discipline him if he played up, but I was always lenient when it came to how close he got to his baby sister or how much noise he made.
At first, ‘simple’ tasks such as the school run, making dinner, getting everyone dressed, – even making it out the house alive (which we all know can be a nightmare with one child!) were difficult but Ava slot in to our routines and I soon found my own ways. I remember taking Lucas to softplay when she was just a few weeks old, breastfeeding her and feeling completely overwhelmed by the busyness, noise and heat of the mayhem around me. I then couldn’t find Lucas for what felt like ages and thought ‘oh my god is this what every outing is going to be like?!’ I definitely had a few similar meltdown moments.
Ava completely adores her ‘bro bro’ as she calls him and is obsessed by Lucas. Now they are older, he is so affectionate and protective towards her and they play together beautifully which I absolutely love. On the other hand, our little diva Ava is definitely the more boisterous one and loves to wind Lucas up, take his toys and tell him off! He doesn’t mind at all and let’s her get away with complete murder.
Having more than one child can be a scary thought, it was for me, but I have honestly loved every moment of expanding my brood. I have found it so much easier the second time round as you’ve done it all before, you are more relaxed and don’t put as much pressure on yourself. As I said, when I was pregnant I worried about about not having enough love to go around, but that love only grows when you have two. It can be hard work balancing it all, but just like everything else in motherhood – you cope and ‘wing it’. Now I don’t know what I would do without both my little terrors!
Are you expecting your second and how do you feel? Let me know or tell me how you find it with two little ones, or three, four or more! I would love to hear.
Til Next Time,