I am now 27 weeks pregnant and I am so very grateful for having two stress free pregnancies, one healthy toddler and one healthy baby on the way, but what I never expected this second time around is the fear and guilt I have been feeling (amid the utter excitement) ever since I fell pregnant.
I wanted to write this blog, not as a 'woe is me' moment but, one for myself to eventually reflect on and two, to reach out to mothers who may be feeling these similar emotions and to make sure they know they are not alone.
I am not fearful of the birth of my second child nor am I fearful of the becoming a mum of two under two or not having enough love to share around. What I am fearful of and the guilt that has consumed me since falling pregnant, is my life with my daughter, Clover, will change forever, my first born, my baby who made me a mother.
Clover is now 18 months old and we've had our moments and struggles, but for the majority of the time she - in mine and my husband's eyes - is the perfect kid. Around the time I fell pregnant this time, things have really clicked for us and most likely because she is growing up and evolving into her own hilarious and gentle personality.
Lately however, guilt is often what I feel when I look at her. Guilt that I will lose this special bond with her, guilt that I will be so consumed with the new baby to the point that she notices she has lost time with me, guilt that I will lose patience with her more quickly, guilt that my first born will no longer be my baby anymore. Some days I just hold her, breath her in and never want to forget these moments. I feel I need to capture every moment with her as an only child, on camera because quite simply I never want to forget these days.
I will miss our morning cuddles together, I will miss relaxed days at the beach, I will miss treating her to special outings and I will miss just hanging at home in the garden with her.
Our little family has a rhythm now, we know what works for us all, what doesn't and life with a toddler is now pretty "easy" and stress free. I am so fearful though, that having a newborn will rock our finally settled boat and the family unit we have become and cherish. Of course I know that this won't happen and having another child who my daughter I am sure will absolutely adore, will only add more fun and love into our lives. Over and over, I hear from so many mothers that your love only grows with every child that you have and the bond between siblings is the most rewarding thing to watch and of course I also realise I will still have morning cuddles with Clover, spend endless days at the beach and treat her to special outings. But....It is just so hard to imagine right now.
I know my family will evolve and change and grow together.
I know that I will look back on these words and laugh to myself that I ever thought these feelings.
I know that I will love motherhood with two.
I know life will be more busy, chaotic and wonderful all in the same breath.
And I know that my first born, even when she is 10 or 20 or 40 or 60 will forever be the person who made me the mother I am today and my second born, the mother I have evolved and become tomorrow.
To all the other mothers out there feeling the same way, I hear you and I feel for you. We will get there and look back on these emotions and perhaps laugh that we ever felt this way and we too will one day be the mothers sharing our advice.
You will be o.k and your first born will be o.k too.