By Sabrina Schlesinger
She was perfect. She slept through the night, she barely cried, she had big brown eyes and the most fun personality. I was absolutely head over heels in love with my little girl…my only girl. Then we found out we were pregnant with baby #2.
I was excited, of course! I always wanted to have more than one child and we had planned this pregnancy. So I was expecting this baby, but what I didn’t expect was all of the thoughts, worries, and emotions that went into having another child.
My firstborn little girl was so much fun and I LOVED being her mommy. I had never known a love like this. Even though I had heard every mother of more than one child tell me that your love grows, I still couldn’t imagine how on earth I could ever love another child the way I loved her.
The night before my cesarean section, I got in bed with my 21 month old girl and held her while she slept…and I cried. Partly because I worried that I couldn’t love another child the same way I loved her, and partly because I was having to let go of the reality that our perfect little family of three would never be the same again.
After the fact and now a mother of four, it sounds a bit silly, but it was such a big hurdle for me at the time. I wish that someone would have told me what I am about to tell you. So here goes…
Here are a few tips to help you emotionally prepare for baby #2:
1. Give yourself permission to grieve.
I know it sounds weird to say, but in every new season of life, there are exciting things we look forward to and areas in our life we have to leave behind…and it is okay to be sad about it. We aren’t going to camp there forever, but it is also okay to take a moment and mourn what you will be leaving behind. Grieving what you are losing doesn’t mean your aren’t grateful for what is ahead of you. One doesn’t cancel out the other. They are separate emotions and both should be acknowledged and processed. So go ahead and have yourself a big cry.
2. Give yourself permission to wonder.
Expanding is probably the LAST thing you want to think about at this moment. LOL. You are exhausted physically while you are growing this new little life within you, while running around chasing a toddler who seems to have an endless amount of energy and no regard to your physical state. As you think and dream about the newest addition that will join your family, allow yourself to have wonder about the mystery of it all. The questions you have of how it all works is good for you! It will reveal new facets of the love God has for all of His children. Be in awe of the miracle that takes place in your heart and embrace the unknown of it all. It is part of the process that you will look back on and be so grateful for.
When baby girl #2 arrived…a miracle happened. Just like all those moms before me said it would. I don’t know how it happened, but somehow in the midst of my heart, God expanded my capacity to love another, with the same amount of passion as the first.
3. Give yourself permission to rest.
Somehow and someway, find some time to rest. I’m not talking about taking a nap, but rather an emotional rest. Take a bath and put on some worship music. Pause before your world changes and reflect on all the blessings you have and all that is to come. Invite the peace of God to come and fill your heart and soul. Lean into His grace and let His comfort wash away all of your worries and fears. Write a note to your firstborn AND your unborn sharing all of the emotions you are having and the dreams you have for them. These are precious moments that we can skip over in the busyness of it all if we aren’t careful. So pause. Breathe it all in and rest before you embrace your newest little adventure.
Love + Blessings,
Sabrina is a mother to three girls and one boy. She is also a pastor’s wife, a freelance graphic designer, and a mom coach! She resides in beautiful San Diego where the sun shines every day. She prefers chai lattes over coffee, mac-n-cheese over vegetables, and staying in over going out. Check her out on Instagram and Facebook!