In two months more, we’ll be a party of four!
I mentioned very non-chalantly in a previous post (found here) that we are expecting baby #2 at the beginning of June.
Which is in like two months.
I’m not ready…
Are we ever really ready?
So many thoughts overwhelm me, on top of the everyday worries of just getting through the day as a mother of a toddler, an owner of a home daycare, a wife, and an individual in this world.
The one that freaks me out a lot is knowing that my exclusive time with bB is almost up. Life as a family of three, as bB being an only child, has a deadline. You guys know how much I love that boy… I mean, this entire blog started because I wanted to share all these thoughts and ideas with other moms solely because of what bB has done for me and how bB has changed my life.
I remember one day when bB was still tiny, I thought for a second ‘I’m fine if bB is our only child. In fact, I don’t know how I could split my love between him and another. It would break
my his heart.’ When I was young, I had these ideas of my future family. I didn’t know what we would look like exactly, but I never imagined having just one kid. I came from a family of five kids, so a small family is something I can’t relate to. Not to say that I want to have five kids, but one seemed a bit lonely, in my opinion. But now that I had bB, I truly couldn’t bear the thought of disappointing him with a ‘hold on’ or ‘not now’ or ‘Mommy’s busy’ so I can pay more attention to another child.
Another scary thought that consumes me is knowing that I’m about to raise another living being in this world… and we haven’t even gotten the first one figured out yet! How can I, in good conscience, have another baby knowing that bB still hits, that he still will have ‘accidents’ in his underwear, that he still dumps his food on the table when he isn’t in the mood to eat it, or that he fake cries when he can’t watch TV? So many loose ends to tie up before June.
Man, just when I thought I was getting the hang of this motherhood thing… Y’know, we can never really lose the title of “new mom”. I was a new mom when I had bB, and now after two years of practice, I will still be a new mom, only this time to a baby and a toddler. With the addition of every new kid, the family dynamic changes again, so it isn’t the same as the first time around.
And this pregnancy for sure is not the same as my first. With baby #2, I was extra tired in my first trimester, and the fatigue trickled into the start of the second. And I was DEFINITELY NOT this hormonal and emotional. It has to be a girl this time…
And work… well, that’s another doozie. How will I tend to these kids while I’m breastfeeding? How much energy will I have for circle time and activities? Will these kids nap through a newborn’s cries? Will I need to take more time off? Will we be able to pay our bills if I shut down for another month?
It’s hard to keep my head from spinning out of control… and sometimes — most times, lately — it gets the best of me. I can’t help but beat myself up for not being the Supermom I want to be: one who can do it all, remember it all, know it all, plan it all, organize it all, and make it look easy. I think all moms feel that pressure deep down inside.
You really do have to put in effort to have good days. I mean, it’s easy to lose your patience and just scream, but keeping calm after your son has repeatedly swatted you for not giving him whip cream for breakfast, that takes a real hero.
I hear from seasoned moms that no matter what life throws at you, ‘you just get through it’.
That’s just too passive for my liking. Of course you get through it… because the world keeps turning, with or without your permission. And if you make it out alive, then time will have passed long enough for you to brace yourself for the next crashing wave. The problem is I don’t want to just get through it. I don’t want to just sit there and let life walk all over me whenever a crisis arises. I’m a parent now — there’s a new crisis every hour, and I’m not sure my aching body can take much more. I want to be ready, I want to know how to handle it, and I want to kick its ass before it kicks mine.
The one thing that I have learned in the last month from enduring the trials of bB’s testy-two’s stage is this: It’s all about perspective.
It’s about choosing to let the cards you were dealt either build you up or break you down. Half-full or half-empty. Be active or passive. Do something or do nothing. I am not going to just get through it. I’m going to love my way through it. No, I’m not gonna fold. This is family we’re talking about here. Life. I’m all in, baby. I choose to count my blessings.
Cutting down my quality time with bB is a bridge I’m not yet ready to cross… but it will be here in two months, whether I’m ready or not. I’m just grateful that I got to spend two whole uninterrupted years with him. This home daycare, although the kids have the effortless ability to run me ragged, has really gifted me with milestones and memories that I wouldn’t have been able to experience otherwise. This is something I need to remind myself of whenever the days are long and rough.
Catering to the daycare rugrats is no easy task, believe me. But, staying home to be with my son is a luxury. And if I have to give it up to pay the bills, then that’s what I gotta do. I definitely don’t want to, but worse comes to worse, we have to make the adjustments and keep it moving. We managed to get through the cutbacks when I went on mat leave with bB. We can do it again. Plus, it helps that hB is a huge fan of frugality, so bonus there.
I’m kind of glad that this pregnancy is different from my first. I get to experience something again… for the first time. And these new new experiences will only give me more ideas and thoughts to write about, new lessons to learn, more mistakes to confess and laugh at, for all of you to enjoy. It’s a way for me to connect with more people out there and share stories with other moms who feel alone in this parenthood battle (locked-bathroom-door-crying moms unite!). That was the whole point of this blog, from the very beginning.
It makes a world of difference when I choose my thoughts to be productive, and not destructive. That’s not to say that I won’t have destructive times… c’mon, I’m human. But making an active decision to have a good day right when I wake up in the morning really affects how my day turns out. Sometimes, I forget to take a minute to focus my mindset on good vibes, and instead get straight into the frenzy of the morning rush (hey, I said I’m human, right?), but I just know that when I choose to step back and take a breath, and when I remember to pray for a little more guidance, that’s when I feel like I have kicked its ass, whatever ‘it’ happens to be that day — a nap, an accident, or dinner.
I wouldn’t say I’m a religious person. I still have so much to learn. But, I will say that I’m glad I found my way back to church. Praying and keeping an open channel to God has really kept me from losing my marbles. So, praying to God to help me ‘get through it’ is what I choose to take away from this part of my journey. It also holds me accountable — If I ask God for patience, then I should also make an active effort to notice those moments during the day when His grace is upon me. So, when bB is practicing his flying kicks on me while I try to relax on the couch, I need to recognize that moment as God saying ‘hey Reen, remember that patience you asked me for today? Here it is. Will you use it?‘ When I do use it, I feel awesome. My body language changes, my thoughts change, my actions change. It’s like I radiate this blue aura of Supermom badassness that makes everyone else feel more relaxed and at peace. I’m creating more and more of these moments, and that’s why I believe that God’s presence in my life is very much real.
And I know, in return, that He will take care of me. So all my worries — about bB, about paying the bills, about being a good mom — will be a fraction of a cost in exchange for having another living being call me “mom”, another round of ‘firsts’, an opportunity for bB to grow up as a big brother, an extra body to hug and kiss, another challenge for hB and I to get through together to make us stronger, another individual with the potential to change this world for the better.
How’s that for perspective?
“A mother’s love is not divided, it’s multiplied.”