Before we were lucky enough to conceive our second imminent arrival, and even before we were graced with Lyla’s presence into the world, I would read all these articles and blogs and think to myself “Ah, that’s not true, every pregnancy is the same”. How wrong could I be?! But if I let myself get upset or worry about this it wouldn’t be healthy for me, it’s just different. That doesn’t mean that it is any less magical or that I am not amazed with every kick or flip I feel, I’m growing a human for goodness sake!! It’s just different.
1 Photos – With my first pregnancy I have a photo of me and my growing bump every 2 weeks exactly, throughout the whole of my pregnancy, without fail. This time round I have lots of the usual photos of me with a bump, but intentional, standing-to-the-side-with-my-belly-out bump photos? One. And that was at about 10 weeks when I thought I was huge but in actual fact there’s nothing there! I do wish I had made more of an effort with this and had more photos of my silhouette, but I can’t do much about that now, and I’m sure she’ll understand that I was a little bit preoccupied…
2 Heavy lifting – Take it easy, they say. No heavy lifting, they say! Pah! I have a toddler, who just so happens to have an inkling that her world is soon to be turned upside down, and therefore clings to me like a bloody spider monkey, insisting on being picked up for approximately 80% of the time she is awake. And then to be put down. And then picked up again. You get the gist. This lifting ‘rule’ just goes out the window. And to be fair, as I get more and more pregnant, her sister is providing a lovely little seat for her, so who wouldn’t want that?
3 Parenting – I had lots of ideas during my first pregnancy of how I would parent my children, and lets face it, you have lots of time to think about these things then (ah, time)! One of them being, no TV. Well. We started off OK, with only pre-breakfast TV just to allow us all to wake up a little bit. Now at 32 weeks pregnant, with a whinging/hungry/tired/bored nearly-two-year-old, I regularly find myself saying to my husband “just put the damn Teletubbies on, PLEASE”. I have also managed 22 months of avoiding ‘In the effing night garden’ because, lets face it, it is just plain trippy and genuinely makes me doubt whether I’ve taken drugs without realising it. Over the past two weeks, however, Iggle Piggle has become my absolute hero.
4 Hospital bag – By this point in my first pregnancy, my bag was packed and in the boot of the car in the case of any eventuality. This time? I am yet to purchase the delights of breast pads, oh-so-sexy maternity pants, or even a hat for the baby to wear when she’s born (she has clothes, at least). I’m sure I’ll do it in a few weeks, and if I forget anything (not the baby, obviously)? Well that’s what husbands are for!
5 Notes – First time around the Bounty folder to put your maternity notes in pokes proudly out of your handbag (that’s a bag for your own belongings void of any nappies or Ella’s Kitchen snacks, sorry, what?), just to say to anybody nearby “look, I’m pregnant, yay!”. And it went EVERYWHERE with me. Second time around – Where are my maternity notes? Oh here they are, on the floor of my car, tucked under the seat, where I left them 6 weeks ago after my last appointment.
6 Counting the weeks – Friend “How many weeks are you now?”, Me “25 weeks, can you believe it?!”. Two weeks later, at my 25-week midwife appointment, I realise I have totally been making this up and lying to anyone that asked me. I know my week changes on a Wednesday, but if you are wanting a response to the above question, do not be surprised if I have to consult my calendar first. And no, I have absolutely no idea what fruit or vegetable the baby is the size of.
7 Scans – As soon as I had my 20-week scan with Lyla, we went home and compiled a framed picture of all the scans I’d had (each one dated with exact weeks and days), and hung it in pride of place in the house to look at everyday. This time I couldn’t even tell you the exact location of all the scan pictures (I have photos of them, so I can have a little bit of credit for that)…they’re probably in the notes folder, you know the one on the floor of the car? Don’t get me wrong, we are aware we need to do a frame, its just last time I mentioned it, the husbands’ response was “we’ll sort it after Christmas”. Which we will, probably.
8 Food – Looking through the menu of a restaurant this time 2 years ago you’d have found me saying “Hmm, I don’t think this will work”, as most of the options involved soft cheese/seafood/pâté/cured meats. At 21 weeks pregnant this time round (I could have been 19, or 23 weeks pregnant of course, it’s anybody’s guess), I sat in a pub in Cornwall half way through a bowl of mussels when I suddenly stopped and thought “I probably shouldn’t be eating this”. 10 seconds later I resumed my meal after thinking about the number of times I’d had food poisoning from anything. None. I’ll be fine. (FYI…I would obviously never put me or the baby at risk).
9 Nursery – Baby number 1 had a complete nursery set up by the time a week had passed from my scan. Nothing was out of place, nobody was allowed in it, it was a shrine. Now, baby number 2 does have a decorated nursery, complete with furniture and everything else she could possibly need (apart from a hat, I must get a hat), but it is currently serving as a great storage space for Christmas presents, things that need putting in the loft, tools that may or may not be required before her birth and pictures to be hung. Well, she doesn’t need that room straight away anyway!
….But, do you know what little bump? We love you so much. Just as much as your sister. I can’t imagine splitting my love in two, but I know I won’t have to, that it will just instantly double when we set eyes on you. And we are SO excited to meet you. And you will get a lovely newborn photo shoot, because Lyla did. And you already have a wardrobe full of gorgeous clothes, because Lyla did (so what if some of them were hers first? It just means they’re special enough for the both of you). And I know I will spend every waking minute amazed by you, because that’s what I do now when I look at Lyla. And we are damn sure you will grow up into another beautiful daughter, because you have a sister to lead you and show you the way, and I’ll take that over any of the things I have or haven’t done second time round.
Sian, Lyla and Baby Bump No.2 xxx