Wednesday, September 5, 2012

plugging along

Ultrasound and bloodwork today. I'll hear back this afternoon on the bloodwork, but barring any unforeseen weirdness, we are All Systems Go for the 13th.

In so many ways, this whole experience is so much easier than the first time around. For one thing, I have way less time to be stuck in my head about it. Time to sit and think deep thoughts about my future as a parent, or the prospect of not having kids, and what each of those two possibilities means for my own identity, confidence, and sense of the future?


The last thing I thought deeply about was whether or not watching "Elmo's Potty Time" more than three times in one week would permanently damage my child's brain. (Verdict: no.)

Last time, I was so careful about every little thing. Lu.pron to be taken at some point from 7-9pm each night? No problem. 8:30pm on the dot, every day. This time? Well, it's generally been taken someplace in the 7-9pm window, except for the two times I completely forgot until 10:35pm, said, "OH SHIT," jumped off the couch, and ran to the bathroom like an Olympic sprinter. And yet, in spite of my extreme imprecision, the triple-stripe lining looked spectacular today.

Take that, Overly Developed Sense of Control.

I dropped the ball on scheduling acupuncture sessions but snuck in for Friday because of a last-minute cancellation. My daughter has developed an obsession with "Mama shoss?" (Mama shots?) and asks if I am going to do this every time I go into the bathroom. Or, as I discovered on Monday, every time I take off my pants: frantically trying on black suits in the Macy's fitting room, she pointed at my stomach and asked over and over again, "Mama shoss?" while I tried to explain to her that I don't have to do that until ni-night time, and hoped that the woman in the room next to me would think I was diabetic and not a drug-crazed heroin addict.

I feel twinges of guilt about taking the whole thing so lightly - or, at least, so much more lightly than last time. And yet it can't be helped. "Kids have so much energy because they siphon it off their parents like midget gasoline thieves," I read the other day, which is true times one hundred. There just isn't enough time in the day to be as intentional about this cycle, and yet as much as I understand that, it also taps into all my secret fears that I will not be able to love this child as much as I love my first one.

There. I said it. I think that's the problem.

I suppose every parent, or at least most of them, has felt this way. It still makes me worry. I'm sure that, upon seeing another baby's face, I would be absolutely as smitten as I was the first time around, but as long as this baby is just a vague possibility - just an abstract hope - it can't compete with the adorable realness of the baby I kiss and cuddle and read stories to and snuggle with.

What if I don't love this baby as much? What if, somewhere down the road, this baby finds out that I forgot to take my Lu.pron shots until 10:35pm twice and didn't have as many acupuncture appointments and occasionally felt conflicted about even having another baby?

I mean, I don't know how this kid would find out any of this unless I said something about it, but you know what I mean.

There are two possibilities here. One, the kid finds out all of this and gets pissed off, in which case the therapy profession has at least one future patient on the way.

Two, I am completely nuts, in which case the therapy profession might still benefit.

Having written this all out, I think I am going to go with option number two. If you want to vote differently, just let me know.


  1. Don't worry...I felt the same way with our 2nd. And even more so because we were doing embryo adoption with the 2nd after the first being biological. I was so worried I would love this 2nd baby less for sooo many reasons. But now...21 months after she was born...don't will love them both fiercley...but differently...because they are different people. I sometimes feel guilty because I feel like I might love the 2nd one more. She is the baby...she was this awesome gift to us....she is a much needier baby than our son was so she "needs' me more...but...I know that is just this particular time in her life...I can honestly say that I love them both as "MUCH"...just in totally different ways. Don't worry will do just fine.

  2. I feel the same way sometimes. Just tonight, I'm in my 2ww and not supposed to lift more than 10 lbs (which my 19 month daughter weighs much more than!) and she wanted only mama to put her to bed. so i lifted her and did it. and i said, i have to be mom to this one first, rather than for the maybe baby #2. it is hard to imagine loving another as much as i love my daughter. but then again, it was hard to imagine loving her as much as i do, before she was here. i guess love is not finite, and there is always enough to go around.

  3. Someone who I think is pretty wise told me that in the elevator on the way to the delivery of his second child, he broke down crying because he could not imagine loving a second child as much. And then he said all of those fears went away the moment he saw her. I believe that our hearts expand for each child we have. But hey, I've only got one at this point, so I'm nervous about the same thing.

    Wishing you tons of luck.

  4. Okay, I am so glad you are being honest about this because I felt exactly that way until the DAY I DELIVERED my son! Seriously...I thought my life was so perfect with my twin girls, the ones I had "tried" so hard for...and had spent so much money to get here. Then this little guy was a holy-crap-we-can-really-get-pregnant-that-way(?!) pregnancy, and I thought there was no way I could possibly feel the same love for him as I felt for my girls. Um, wrong. The second I saw him, held him, nursed him...he was mine. He was equal. I think the best way to look at it is like, picture the daughter you have as a candle with a bright burning flame....when you add another candle to the mix, you aren't taking anything away from that flame, you are simply sharing the flame...both flames burning just as brightly as the one did on it's own. I know it is hard to imagine, but it is really really true. No love was removed from my girls...the flame burns as brightly as ever for them...but the flame for my little man burns just as brightly as the flame for the girls...BIZARRE! But true. I love it. I love him. And I had those exact same feelings you are having literally until I had him. Totally normal!!!

  5. Your concern about this cycle resonates with me--I'm struggling a little with this myself with this current pregnancy. I can't tell if it has to do with 1)the fact that it's my second pregnancy,and there's a bit of been-there-done-that in the mix; 2)the fact that I am so busy wrangling my adorable, but boundlessly energetic toddler that there is no time for [literal] navel-gazing like there was when I was pregnant with him; or perhaps, 3)the fact that this pregnancy was a total surprise and still feels quite unreal, now 18 weeks in. So, all that to say and echo what everyone else has said--I think it's normal to have these feelings, and I think it's always more complex than we may have anticipated at the outset. I read this post week before last, and it was as if it was written just for me at the exact moment I needed it:

    I hope you get the green light on the 13th! Thinking of you and hoping for very, very good things. :)