What second children may not know until they have second children of their own is that they get less attention from their parents before they’re even born.
Today Mama has her fourth…or is it fifth?…appointment for baby to be, which will be the second one that I attend. With 3B, I went to every prenatal appointment.
While having 3B now does keep us busier, making scheduling and attending appointments together more complex, that’s only part of the reason that I haven’t made it to more of them. A major part is that I now work slightly farther away, which is enough to make it a 45-minute one-way trip to the doctor’s office, versus 5 minutes one-way from my old office. However, for 3B, Mama had to make a 45-minute one-way trip for each visit, so it’s not impossible. A minor part of the equation is that I’ve got much less sick leave accrued at my new job, and I’m trying to build up as much as possible so I can get paid for at least a day or two of my time off when the new baby arrives.
What this second child may not understand until he or she has a second child is that a major part of the reason I haven’t made it to more of their prenatal visits is that this time around is that I’m much more relaxed about pregnancy. Sure, it’s fallacious reasoning–each pregnancy is as risky as the next–but it’s a much nicer feeling than the constant “What if…?” worry of our first pregnancy.
What’s particularly nice about it is that we’re just as excited for this baby, and without so much worry, I feel like I’m better able to enjoy that excitement. Plus, last time around we weren’t parents yet, so we were still working as much as possible–and it’s possible to work much more without a child, of course. So this time around I feel like Mama and I have more time together and that we enjoy it more, spending less time hunched over our laptops late into the night and more time enjoying belly laughs.
I hope that as the new baby feels the gentle jostling and merry music of Mama’s laughter, it can sense our being more chill and just as excited this time around, even if it doesn’t understand it consciously.