It’s in moments like these—the moments when I’m holding my firstborn child in my arms, squeezing him tight—that I wonder how I could possibly get used to it no longer being just us three. Me, my husband and our son.
It’s in the moments when he grabs my face and plants a kiss on my cheek, or when his tiny little arms wrap around my neck as he jumps on my back. It’s in moments when he throws a toy at my feet and demands for me to play with him. Or climbs up between my husband and I as we’re watching a movie and rests his head in either of our laps. And I’m instantly filled with angst.
Because I know that in due time, these moments that are usually made up of just us won’t be the same anymore when another child is brought into the picture.
And I’m just not sure that I’m prepared for it. Because having a second child changes the dynamics of everything. And I have no idea how my relationship with my firstborn child will shift, but I carry a grief that he will get less of me.
As my attention is diverted to caring for another being.
As I have to figure out how to balance becoming a mom of two.
As I perhaps fall under the woes of postpartum blues all over again—and suffer yet another identity loss in the thick of it.
As I become all over again.
Because my firstborn child showed me the way and changed me like no other.
And I fear that my firstborn will have a hard time recognizing the new version of who I become.
Because he is so used to me being the mama who would drop anything in an instant to play with him. Or the mama who would race back and forth across his room, carrying him on her back. Or the mama who finds the energy to do just about anything with him, no matter how drained she is.
So what about when I become the mama who can’t just put down the baby and come play? Or when I can’t carry him on my back for weeks as my postpartum body heals? Or when I just don’t have the energy because his little sister or brother kept me up all night?
Will it be hard for him to understand the shift? When I don’t have the capacity to do as much as I used to? When he has to share my attention? Will it be a harder transition for him than it will be for me?
These are the things that make me afraid of having a second baby—rightfully so. Because I don’t want my firstborn child to feel like he sacrificed taking precedence. I don’t want him to feel abandoned—or even confused as he tries to wrap his little mind around all of these very new and very real changes.
Because my firstborn child showed me the way and changed me like no other. And I never want him to feel like he is insignificant in any way.
Honestly, just as they say that you’re never truly prepared to become a mother, I also think it goes the same for having a second child. You’re never truly prepared to shift your life all over again—but even through doubts and fears, somehow you muster up the strength to do it anyways.
And somehow, your heart learns how to expand and wrap around both your babies, leaving neither of them uncovered or feeling absent from your love.
For now, until the day where it isn’t just us comes, I will cherish every ounce of time that my firstborn child and I get to spend together. And even when he does welcome a sibling, he will never have to question if he has my love.
And he will never have to feel like he has less of me—because he will always have my whole entire heart.
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