Confession: There is a small child who is currently residing at the corner of my uterus and bladder. He is 28 weeks old and I am afraid of him. And if he were my first child I don’t think being afraid of him would be anything abnormal or anything I would expect others to judge me about, but he’s not. He’s my second. And everybody knows that by the time you’ve already had one, you should be able to figure the next one out pretty easy-peasy.
My fears are these: Kiddo number one has been so easy and healthy. She’s hardly been sick. Never had an ear infection. Slept through the night by four-weeks-old. She’s pretty much been spectacular since the womb. You know I’m not going to have it that easy with this next one. No one is that lucky.
I’m afraid I’ve forgotten how to be a mom to a newborn. That may seem completely ridiculous because the most awesome kid in the history of life, aka Evie, isn’t even two, yet. So, it’s not like I haven’t already been a newbie’s mom pretty recently. But! That’s exactly where the (irrational?) fear comes from. I’m afraid that I will have forgotten when certain milestones are supposed to happen, when something is normal and when it isn’t, and what I’m supposed to do when the inevitable emergency happens. Everyone is really sweet and quick to dole out advice to a rookie mom, but shouldn’t I (the mother of one already) know this stuff by now?! those well-intentioned moms think to themselves and snicker. The answer is yes I should, and I’m secretly hoping that it’ll all come back to me once the little dude is here. But who knows.
Oh, Natalie, you are thinking to yourself as you read this. Of course it’ll all come back to you. You’ll do great.
Lovely thoughts. And maybe you’re right. But my ultimate fear and the pinnacle of this confession is that I am most afraid of how hard it is to have a newborn. The first time around everyone tells you how difficult it is to wake up for all those nighttime feedings, but the dreamy-eyed first time mom is too excited about the prospect of being a mom—of having a baby of her very own—to worry too much about it. And let’s face it, you don’t really know just how hard it is until you’ve lived it.
But that’s just the thing. I have lived it. This time around I really do know just how hard it’s going to be. And there’s no “sleeping when the baby sleeps” this time since I’ve got a toddler who will be demanding my attention.
So that’s it. My confession as a soon-to-be-mother-of-two. I’m nervous.
I am also completely in love with this boy I haven’t even met yet. He terrifies me, and I can’t wait to meet him.