When I first wrote this list I was cruising in the second trimester of my second pregnancy.
I was feeling somewhat refreshed when I woke up at 4:45am with my toddler (mind you I was asleep by 8:20pm!). And I could design a trip to the shops as a fun outing.
Now I am waddling around in the third trimester, rearranging my pillows every 10 minutes at night, finally getting comfortable, then realising I need to pee … again! And a trip to the shops is now too exhausting and has been replaced by a play in the library and collecting my online shopping order.
The excitement and panic about having a second child is starting to set in.
When my mind is calm, I think, ‘Oh two kids is going to be wonderful, watching them play LEGO, paint, build tents and grow up together’.
Then I start thinking, ‘How are we going to afford it? Are the kids going to get along? Are we going to be a house full of sleep-deprived zombies?’
Like so many mums, I already feel overstretched meeting the demands of our busy household. So what is it going to be like with two kids?
After the birth of my first baby I know how easy it is to develop the habit of worrying needlessly. I have watched so many mums do it and have seen how the more you worry the harder it is to stop.
But some worry can be productive and can force us to take action and make plans.
So, I am trying to manage my thoughts, which are often running out of control, by focusing on the present moment and making plans for those worries where I can.
Here are my current top five concerns for the arrival of baby number two and how I plan to remedy them.
1. Sleepless nights
I feel like I have only just adjusted to being up before 5 am every morning. In a few short months I am going have to combine this with the torture of sleepless nights.
Solution: Rest whenever possible and simplify household duties. Plan for simple meals, a greater tolerance for mess and accept any help that is offered.
2. Lost time with my son
I am already finding it hard to stop feeling guilty about not having the same amount of energy or attention for my firstborn as my pregnancy goes on let alone when his sister arrives. And how I can possibly find enough time and head space to love her as much as him?
Solution: Remind myself that the love you have for your family is limitless and that by involving my son in looking after his baby sister will only strengthen our relationship and be a new way for us all to bond together.
3. No time for myself
One of the hardest things I found as a new mum was adapting to having very little time to myself. With two little time thieves around I am imagining this will become even more difficult.
Solution: I am scheduling some mandatory “me time” each week to get a massage, go for a walk or keep up a hobby. Even if I just get 30 minutes to myself in the house to have a shower in the quiet I know I will find it easier to return the busyness of family life with calm.
4. No time for my husband
Just like every couple, our relationship changed when we become parents. Instead of just focusing on each other we now think of ourselves as part of a family unit. It’s a big shift but a wonderful experience to share together.
With another little person filling my mind with worries and love it is hard to imagine how I am still going to get time to connect with my husband.
Solution: Prioritise doing things together that are meaningful to us, like exercising, spending time in nature and having sometime to just sit and read together.
5. More expenses
There is nothing worse than trying to learn how to look after a little baby on bugger all sleep and stressing about finances.
Solution: To get our finances in order before the baby arrives; review our family budget and estimate the increase in expenses and reel back any unnecessary expenditure, review our savings goals and think of ways to make managing our money simpler. We are going to set up online shopping lists to make grocery shopping easy and within budget and review our insurances, phone plans and internet to make sure we are getting the best deal.
Image credit: ashumskiy/123RF Stock Photo