When you’re expecting your second child, so much has changed. You’ve already done it all once. And you’ve got a (big) little one to take care of while you’re doing it this time. To that end, I’ve put together a list of the things I’ve noticed are completely different for me this time around. Let me know what you found to be different the second time around in the comments section below!
No two pregnancies are alike
From the first pregnancy, you have an idea of your body’s tendencies. But still the general feeling could be different with this second pregnancy. You might have morning sickness this time around even if you didn’t have it last time. You might carry higher, lower or gain more or less weight, and prefer a different style of maternity clothes (shorts vs. skirts, for example)—but you sort of have an idea of how to deal with it from the first time.
“No lifting heavy objects” just isn’t an option
Toddlers are heavy and wiggly. And you’ve got to lift one regularly, if this is your second pregnancy and you’re caring for your firstborn. Into and out of the car seat. On and off the potty. When they cry and need a hug. Even if your back hurts.
You focus on different things
The second time around, you’ve got hindsight in your favor. Instead of obsessing over what you can and can’t eat while you’re pregnant, you focus more on getting your existing child ready to welcome a sibling. You make sure you’ve got the tools you know are going to be helpful with a newborn, rather than guessing or consulting guide books. You know photos are big, so maybe you buy matching baby hats or outfits for your toddler and baby to wear. You may already have most of the basic newborn wear from your first child.
The second pregnancy seems to go by faster
You don’t have time to sit back and feel the wonder you experienced with your first pregnancy. It just zooms by. (It’s a taste already of dividing your time between a baby and your toddler.)
UPDATE: Okay, I initially wrote this in the first trimester. Now, at 23 weeks, the days are dragging by! My body is huge and heavy, and everything hurts more than the first time. According to my doctor, this is normal for second pregnancies. Second and third trimesters are exhausting and your body just doesn’t have the same tight support in place that it did before you had your first baby. (I’m also on the older side and I tend to put on weight when I even look at dessert, which is definitely not helping.)
If you delivered prematurely, your second could be even earlier
Most people who delivered preterm the first time are caught by surprise. You spend so much time focusing on being pregnant, that sometimes learning about the labor aspect comes right at the end. If you were early the first time, chances are you are better prepared and taking all the precautions for preterm labor you can with your second pregnancy. This time around is proving more challenging as new things come to light.
Labor is less of a worry
Hey, you did it once and came out alright. They say the second time is much easier, so the act of getting the baby out just doesn’t weigh on your mind as much. You know you can’t plan every detail, but you pack your hospital bag well in advance, just in case.