My second pregnancy has been a bit more laid back than the first. Instead of consulting checklists and making sure we are prepared and so forth, I’ve been enjoying the daily moments and continuing to parent our toddler. But I’ve been aware of the differences between my second pregnancy and my first. It has been interesting to see how we’ve prepared differently for our second child. We’ve let go of a lot of preconceptions, been able to avoid a lot of the pre-baby planning stress that new parents undergo.
As parents, we already have a lot of this stuff down. We have the clothing already, we have the equipment, we have our prior experience to help us.
Since this is my second pregnancy, I kind of know what to expect, and it’s actually relaxing to be able to let go of all the hype surrounding pregnancy and focus on what matters.
What Matters During a Second Pregnancy?
I have to tell you, a lot more priority is placed on someone who was the center of attention for the first pregnancy. Preparing a child to be an older sibling can take time. We’ve been fortunate in that our son is excited to be a big brother. I’ve heard (and seen) other moms have a tough time during their second pregnancy because their first child was either in denial about things, or outright angry about having a little sibling. But not our son.
In fact, he was so excited that a couple month ago, Toby told me he was going to help pull the baby out “now.”
We had a talk.
About how baby needed to grow and get big and strong, and how baby would come out in good time.
Now, when people ask if he’s excited to be a big brother, he replies: “No. Baby has to grow bigger and can’t come out yet.”
Ok, so back to the differences have I noticed between my two pregnancies:
- Tracked every pregnancy milestone, knew what happened in which week
- Shopped for maternity clothes
- Read lots of books (including “What to Expect”)
- Took Lamaze class
- Signed up for hospital tour
- Took new mom class at the hospital
- Met with pediatrician(s) and decided on one (months ahead of time)
- Took a carseat safety class
- Attended a cloth diapering workshop
- Signed up for cloth diaper service
- Took prenatal yoga
- Researched a lot
- Registered for everything we could think of for baby
- Made sure we had everything on the baby item list
- Attended multiple baby showers held in our honor
- Painted and decorated the nursery
- Packed and repacked my hospital bag
- Attended a few La Leche meetings
- Took naps liberally
- Confident throughout the pregnancy
- Took lots of maternity and belly photos
- Planned out how to reveal baby’s gender to the future grandparents
- Took a couple weeks to peruse and decide on baby names
- Had to be reminded by others what week of pregnancy it was
- Pulled out the maternity clothes I kept from kid #1 (gave away what didn’t fit)
- Read a couple books (Birthing from Within, Beautiful Babies)
- Filled out pediatrician paperwork (a couple weeks ahead of time)
- Took pilates (much better for me than yoga!)
- Donated everything (well, a lot of things) we never used for kid #1
- Moved kid #1 to his big boy room (white walls), switched up the name letters on the nursery wall
- Threw together some stuff for a hospital bag
- Put together a “big brother kit”
- Lucky to get a nap once in a while
- Fears arose during the pregnancy (related to prior cesarean)
- Researched VBAC, natural birthing resources, etc.
- Thought about how few maternity and belly photos were taken this time around (comparatively)
- Toddler announced baby’s gender to grandparents immediately after ultrasound
- Decided on baby’s name in one evening
I’ll do a postpartum comparison of my second pregnancy to the first when we get to that stage. But as of now, I know there are some things we’ll be doing differently.
We had a LOT of baby stuff that we didn’t use or need. I have to tell you, we donated probably 100+ baby items in the past year — while still keeping plenty of things for kid #2. We donated a swing that was used no more than two times, a bunch of baby toys that weren’t practical went elsewhere, and a ton of baby clothes left for more needy homes than ours.
Final Thoughts on My Second Pregnancy
I think being a parent already makes the second pregnancy easier. Not necessarily in a “been there, done that” kind of way… although for some moms I guess that could be true. My experience through both pregnancies has been wildly different.
The first half of this latest pregnancy was harder for me (morning sickness, etc), but the second half has felt easier and my body hasn’t been as stressed by the weight and balance shifts. It might be from the pilates, which focuses on strengthening the core. or it could be the diet and lifestyle changes that I’ve implemented since then. Or maybe, it’s just the fact that I’ve been kept busy and active with my toddler’s antics…
Emotionally, I’ve felt like more of a wreck this second pregnancy — but that might be because I’ve been processing the birth experience and worrying about a repeat. I’ve had to be intentional about letting go of my fears and assumptions (something that I didn’t have to deal with at all the first time around).
Letting Go is a Process
You can read more about my process of letting go at Wildflower Ramblings, where I’m guest posting about my unexpected cesarean birth – To the Mom Who Didn’t Want a Cesarean Birth.
Here are some other posts about being pregnant for the second time (links will open in a new window for your convenience). You may want to also check out my Pregnancy + Birth board on Pinterest.
- The five noticeable differences in my second pregnancy
- The Differences Between First and Second Pregnancies
- Second Pregnancy Surprises: Differences to Expect This Time
- The Top 10 Differences Between Your First and Second Pregnancies
- 7 Differences Between Your First and Second Pregnancies
- 7 Ways a Second Pregnancy Can’t Compare to a First
What About You?
Have you noticed differences in subsequent pregnancies? What was most noticeably different for you in your second pregnancy? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!