Tuesday, January 28, 2014

am i ready for #2?

After having Duke, I wondered when I would reach the point of wanting another.  We didn't even jokingly entertain the thought before he turned one.  Absolutely not.  But after that, conversations began to happen.  What was our plan?  (You know, as far as we can have a "plan.")

There were days when I thought doing the "2 under 2" thing sounded fun.  (And by "days," I mean like probably 1-2-3-4 days.  4 days of my life.)  Then there were days (more than 4) when I thought waiting until Duke was 5 sounded like a great idea.  Having Duke in school, potty trained, feeding himself, communicating, and putting on his own clothes sounded like a fun place to be while having a new baby.

But then I got the thing.  The thing where you actually do want a baby.  Not because you're following some kind of plan, not because you've saved up a certain amount of money, and not because everyone else on Facebook is doing it, but because you actually want one.  It was probably when Duke was around 18 months that it got serious.  I found myself wanting to be pregnant, wanting to hold an infant, wanting to breastfeed, and wanting to do all of it all over again.

Motherhood didn't calmly make its way into my life with a few subtle adjustments.  It came crashing in.  So the fact that I was feeling ready was a sure sign that this was something Colt and I wanted deeply.

About a month and a half before Duke turned 2, we found out I was pregnant.  It was ALL joy in that moment.

It's still all joy.  But some days it feels really huge, big, and impossible.

Am I ready for the around-the-clock-ness of breastfeeding again?
Am I ready for the schedules, naps, and waketimes?
Am I ready to not sleep on my stomach for another year after already not doing it during pregnancy?
Am I ready to be slumber-party-sickness exhausted every day?
Am I ready to deal with the possibility of another round of awful acid reflux?

And the most pressing and daunting question of all ...

Am I ready to be depressed again?

I know it's not a done deal that I'll struggle with PPD, but it's certainly a possibility.

I mean, I'd like to think I'm better equipped this time around.  Not just because I'm already a mom, but because I have better coping skills.  I have a better understanding of God.  I have a better understanding of "this too shall pass" and "it's only a season."  But I'm not naive enough to think it won't be hard.  I'm pretty much expecting absolute chaos and exhaustion.  And I'm not going to expect the monster of depression to show up again, but I'm also not going to be shocked if it does.

Which is not what I was expecting the first time.

I figured having a baby would be hard, but I also expected it to be full of time on the couch, constant queso in the crockpot, watching football, eating, and hanging out.  Guess what?  It wasn't really that way.  Even during football season.

I don't mean to discourage new moms because I think for some, it can be that!  But for moms who deal with PPD, it's another story.  Everything is different because your mind is different.  (I have many more thoughts on this when it comes to baby #2 and I plan on sharing them soon.)

Just so many questions, you know?  Truly, at this point, most of my days are not spent dwelling on these thoughts.  I'm mostly dreaming about having a little girl, watching Duke become a big brother, seeing our family become a family of 4, and figuring out how the heck I'm going to clean out my entire house by May.  But I just like to document it all - even the annoying questions that have no answers except, "You just trust and you worry about that when it comes."  So besides that little gem of an answer, any of you experienced mothers of 2+ kiddos are certainly welcome to throw in other words of wisdom!


  1. Claire I have these same fears about having another baby. But I think you are right...knowing the signs and having a better idea of what to expect will definitely help. I think also letting a few key people in your life "in" and ask them to push into you when they see the signs. I know I never felt capable of asking for help or telling anyone how I felt, but I know not to do that next time around. Thanks for sharing your honesty...it's so refreshing!

  2. I still experienced symptoms of PPD with Rhett, but the second time around I had figured out what helped me cope (getting outside, being around people, etc.) and was quick to do those things. For example, we were back to BSF within a week of Rhett's birth, not because I'm crazy supermom but because I knew that being out with people (and in a place where Riggs was in his class and entertained/loved on) was way better for me than sitting at home alone with two kids! You just have better instincts about what is best for you and your family the second time around, and you can feel "the crazies" or "the weepies" coming on, recognize it, and brace yourself to either embrace it or take action against it depending on the moment, rather than being stunned by it like I was the first time around. The beauty of all the other stuff--the nursing, the sleeping, the schedules--is that the second time around you know how quickly those seasons fly by, so it makes it a bit easier to endure knowing that in a year you'll hardly remember that stage! (The thought of which, for me, then brings on the weepies again! Ha! Can't win with all this motherhoood/hormonal emotion!) You are going to love life with two...promise :)

    1. I love all of this. Thank you for such a thoughtful response (as always :)). This was so encouraging and affirming to read. Appreciate you!


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