I was blessed with my second daughter in April this year, a little short of my third birthday as a Mommy. Let me recount how, creating another human being is different and yet similar to the first time.
• You know the conversion of weeks and months and don’t spend all your time anxiously poring over ‘What to expect when you’re expecting’. The unwarranted advice continues (who doesn’t love to talk in India!?) but this time around you know (as opposed to first time guessing) and can politely fob off well meaning eager-to-guess-the-gender-relatives.
• Dietary restrictions are a thing of the first pregnancy. You eat all you want (healthy, of course) – without ascribing any twinge you may feel in the abdomen to the last piece of fried fish. If I hadn’t suffered from massive heartburn in the last trimester I’m sure I would’ve beaten Adam’s record in Man vs Food for downing the spiciest Vada Pao, as my fat waddly self craved for the highest level of pungent, chillies- infused Tabasco-bathed food.
• You are more confident of the changes happening to your body:
The fleshy stretch lines, the dark pigmentation patches, the temporary freckles on your face – they will all melt away just like those extra kilos – with simply breastfeeding – a fact you revel in as you dig into that sinful chocolate mousse!
• You start tanking up on your sleep unabashedly. I remember sleeping for three hours at a stretch with my elder daughter cuddled in my arms, blissfully snoring away the afternoon. I loved digging my chin into her shoulder, letting her soft curls brush against my face- the sound of her steady breathing- the best lullaby for me in the world.
Now, with a pre-schooler and an infant – it’s my daily challenge to get them to nap together so I can catch shut eye of twenty minutes!
• Sometimes, just sometimes, people take your 2nd time pregnant self for granted.
The first time around is tricky. You are a tad apprehensive and so are people around you. But by the second trimester of the second child, people adopt a BTDT attitude. This may cause some frustrated tears but nothing that a good, big bar of your favourite chocolate and your preferred music won’t solve.
• Epidural doesn’t seem so bad. Who wants to go through double-digit hours of labour again?
The first time labour lasted 17 hours, the second time – 7 hours (by this statistic I’m tempted to have a third baby just to see how fast he’ll arrive). With an epidural, labour was not only relatively painless, it also turned out way shorter. I remember laughing on some silly doctor joke as they wheeled me into the delivery room. So much for remembering everything about birthing- experiencing the worst pain to twist your insides out – once is enough!
• You still can’t figure out if baby has fed enough, has latched properly or is hungry even after feeding for half an hour:
Even the most experienced moms draw blanks when confronted with this question. Figuring out a child you’ve raised yourself is easy- you know what they want sometimes even before they ask for it, but a brand new human being? That takes time- and however many babies you may have, you will still feel puzzled by them till you get used to them.
• You know the difference between diaper changing mat, receiving sheet, cot sheet… With their correct usage!
Yes, newborns have their own world populated by all things small and beautiful. From the knowledge gleaned through your firstborn you can arrange the nursery faster and better than your local kiddie shop without fumbling over different types of ‘sheets’!
• You can actually bathe your newborn yourself: even if it is in the baby support!
There are a whole host of other things too, obvious things that I may have missed- things like pregnancy brain (you’re too busy with your toddler to forget anything), aches and pains (your toddler being the best medicine) and ubiquitous doctor visits (where the focus is more on jokes than the check-up) – which are food for another post.
And when the infant and toddler meet each other for the first time, or when infant realises that the toddler is her best friend and ally for life- is yet another interesting read.
Till then, Mommies, keep your spirits high.
Cheers to 2015!
– Roli Bhushan-Malhotra
About the author :
Roli Bhushan- Malhotra is an ambitious mommy to two little dollies. When she’s not thinking about recipes for her daughters, or worrying about her online home furnishings business, she likes to read (pursuing MA in English Lit) and stare at the wall.
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