#crazytalk with Megan Stuke

I'm now painfully aware that my days as a mom of just one child are numbered. I mean, I can count them.

It's a weird feeling, because for so long we thought we'd only have the one. I spent a lot of time focusing on the fact that I'd only get to have a first birthday party once, I'd only have a two year old who likes to hold my hand once, I'd only get to watch someone learn to talk once. I was trying so hard to soak up every minute with Johnny, because his life, for me, was a bunch of firsts and lasts at the same time.

So now, here we are, getting ready to do it all again. And you would think that would alleviate some of my "this is the only time" anxiety, right? Because all that stuff? I get to do it again. And I am delighted that I get to do it again, and thrilled to see how it is the same or different with kid #2 from kid #1.

But at the same time, it's brought another whole level of anxiety to the playing field. And it's not the kind of anxiety you might think; it's not the OMG HOW WILL I COPE WITH TWO AND WORK AS MUCH AS I DO logistical kind of anxiety, though trust me, there's some of that going on. No, it's more of a "Will I get to cuddle with Johnny as much," "What if I can't hold Johnny's hand anymore," "Will Johnny never get to sleep with me again," kind of thing.

I'm not so concerned that Johnny will hate the new baby. If he does, he does. That is part of being a sibling. And I'm not worried that he'll feel less loved or he won't get as much attention from us - I know he will get plenty. No, it's ME I'm worried about. I'm worried that Johnny's daddy will get to sort of take over with Johnny while I nurse and parent an infant in the way that moms tend to be best at in those very early months. And I'm worried I'll be jealous.

It's so irrational, I can't even believe I'm admitting it.

So for now, I'm staring at my toddler. I'm soaking him in, begging him to sit by me in the chair, stealing extra hugs and kisses, letting him have an extra piece of cake, and caving when he wants extra books or songs at night. Basically, I'm spoiling my kid so he will be EXTRA NIGHTMARISH when the baby comes. Mom of the year.

So typical. I want him to LOVE ME and NEED ME so he doesn't forget me when the new baby arrives. I mean, who is the grown up here??

But there. I admitted it. What were your "second child" irrationalities? I'm curious. Tell me I'm not alone.


Aynsley Anderson 6 years, 3 months ago

I think almost all second-time mothers-to-be have similar concerns. I know I sure did. But you know what? It does all work out and there is enough time and love to go around. And older kids do adapt and in most cases are richer for having a sibling. The part that can get short-changed is a little "me-time" each day. That is what you have to to work hard at carving out.

rivercitymom 6 years, 3 months ago

Congratulations! When my oldest was about two, I was talking with a co-worker (a nurse) who had attended a seminar in which the speaker stressed that the greatest gift you can give your child is a sibling (or siblings). That really made an impression on me. My two kids have a love/hate relationship sometimes, but I know they will take care of one another in ways that I won't be allowed or maybe won't even be around to do - so I am so happy they have each other, and that we have them.

Marilyn Hull 6 years, 3 months ago

When our twins were born, we already had two small children. So much for family planning!

At my older sister's suggestion, I started doing "special days" with each of the older kids. It was kind of like a date with that one kid, and I looked forward to it as much as they did. They got to pick what we did.

Twenty one years later, we are still doing special days of sorts. I still need one-on-one time with each of my kids from time to time.

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