Becoming a mom…the SECOND time around

There are many varieties of family sizes and dynamics whether it’s having just one little one, to the other extreme like the Duggar family with 19 kids (and counting).  Although I don’t have any kids of my own now, I have always wanted three.  I grew up with two brothers and loved the balance we had in my family.   

After working at Graco for a few months now, I’m beginning to better understand and appreciate the duties of parenthood and I am in awe of those who have two or more children.   I’m starting to wonder, “How do others do it? How will I do it?” 

No parent would deny that each baby is special and significant in its own way and the experience is always a new one.

From my conversations with a variety of second-time moms here at Graco, many things change when baby #2 arrives. 

Most agree that the first pregnancy is a time for “doting” and constant discussion of your baby.  Everyone wants to talk about your due date, gender, preparation, and excitement of baby #1.   Once you are on to the second, your life pretty much seems to remain the same.  After all, you have another child to care for, nuture, and educate about the new little one joining the family

Accoring to Melissa Parlaman, mother of two adorable girls, “For me, people seemed to discuss the pregnancy less and were more likely to continue everyday conversation when pregnant with my second baby.  Caring for another child in the meantime also allowed for a normal schedule, making my second pregnancy feel shorter than the first.  This was partially due to preparation and knowledge from my first pregnancy, but mostly because I continued on with my daily routine.”  

Everyone can relate to time flying by when we are in our daily routines. Our moms said to try to remember that the pregnancy experience is always new one – so take a step back to enjoy it and don’t let the time slip away!

Another expected difference is the evolution of baby gear over time.  Graco’s strollers, swings, and many other products (even our diaper bags!) are constantly being updated.  Not to mention the fashions continue to change with trends. 

Second time moms collectively agree it is important to be practical when purchasing new baby gear.  Sometimes, things need replacing (especially car seats after a certain period of time) but we allow use for all your babies, not just the first born.  Advice from our moms on what you will definitely need to purchase ? A second humidifier, books (don’t expect baby #1 to give up that easy!), hangers for new clothing, photo albums to document all the milestones for baby #2, and a new “blankey.” 

Each baby (no matter the birth order) brings her own unexpected surprises and differences.  How were things different for you?  How did you prepare your first for baby #2?  Share your “second time mom” stories!

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4 Responses to “Becoming a mom…the SECOND time around”

  1. Kristen March 9, 2010 at 9:52 pm #

    Becoming a 2nd time parent was a bit different than I expected. My pregnancies were almost identical (and thankfully very easy for both), but ultimately the “prego” time played out very differently. I agree with MP that people don’t ask nearly as many baby questions when your prego with #2, I think they assume your an old pro and don’t want to talk all things baby anymore. The first time, I couldn’t go through the grocery store without at least 5 stops of “when are you due” or “do you know what it is”. When you’re prego and have a toddler in tow, people don’t ask about you, but inquire about how old the child in the cart is and laugh at the silly face he’s making while staring down the random stranger.

    Then there’s the schtuff! When I was pregnant with my first son, I spent nearly all my spare time researching the best products, safety, polling friends on their likes and dislikes, picking registry items, fashions and colors, themes, and basically everything revolved around prepping for the new bundle to arrive. With my second son, there wasn’t much prep to do. We had all the “gear”, we knew how to put it together, and when to drag it out or put it away, we didn’t spend months on end researching because we already knew the best (Graco) stuff was in the basement safely stowed away and waiting to be dragged out of storage, wiped down, disinfected and ready for baby.

    With #1 we didn’t already have a toddler occupying every minute of our time. The days seemed to drag on in anticipation instead of months sailing by because you’re already too busy to think about monthly dr appts becoming weekly beoming daily.

    And then there’s the delivery. Been there done that is all that comes to mind here with #2. No 8 hours of staring at the 4 walls of the delivery room. Instead I stayed home as long as possible nearly delivering in the car, got there just in time and wham bam thank you for not arriving in time Dr. baby is here 18 minute later! Umm yeah, perhaps if there’s a #3 we’ll go a wee bit sooner than that.

    I think the one difference I found most interesting was the hospital visitors. Our room was brimming with visitors when #1 was born, we couldn’t catch an ounce of shut eye because it was a revolving door of balloons, flowers and more gifts from family and friends. When PJ (our 2nd son) was born… I think my in laws who were caring for our first son and our church minister were our only visitors, everyone else opted to wait until we got home. No 10 trips to the car with more schtuff, just baby in his Graco SafeSeat!, hospital bag and we were off 1 day after delivery instead of 2 and a half.

    And at this point we can absolutely say… no 2 kids are alike no matter how similarly you try to parent them, they’re just different!

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