My second child is rolling around in my belly, two weeks from his due date.
Preparing for the Day
My hips are creaky, my toddler is sleeping, and the house is (sort-of) clean, so I’m taking a moment to sit with my thoughts. We moved two months ago and are settled, the big projects are done, my homebirth supplies are ready to go. As with my first, I feel organized. I feel ready.
But as I learned with my first, I suspect that ‘feeling ready’ will really only get me to that first moment when that baby is placed on my chest and I feel his slippery body against mine. After that, the only preparation that matters might be the preparation to be flexible.
Nothing Can Really Prepare You
The biggest change that comes over a woman when she has a baby is the indescribable act of becoming a mother, and that’s something no one can prepare for. Not even you can prepare yourself for that, and I don’t think it matters how many children you’ve had. With each new birth, a mother is born, and we are transformed in ways too deep to explain.
We are moved to feel things we’ve never felt. We think things we’ve never thought. And we give things we’ve never given.
Our presence — emotionally, mentally, physically, spiritually — suddenly feels more tangible and necessary.
Exciting Times Ahead
There are the practical things, however, that I’m excited to try again.
I’m excited to adopt a rhythm and schedule much sooner. I’m excited to bring a child into the world while still feeling connected to my husband. Our first go-around left our marriage suffering for a bit, so we’re talking about ways to work with and for each other, and I’m determined. I’m excited to know that I can keep a baby alive, and that I don’t have to wonder about that this time.
With my first child, natural labor played a huge role in preparing me to be a mom. Motherhood imitates labor and birth in so many ways, and I’m grateful that from my first moments as a mother, I knew I could push through the hard to get to the unspeakable good, and that it was worth it. Days full of difficulty have always, always seen a breakthrough and great joy, even if it’s days or weeks later. The good stuff is that much sweeter when we’ve worked through the hard. Laboring hard to bring my daughter into the world prepared me for the ups and downs of motherhood in ways I could never have foreseen. I’m excited to attempt that again.
Second Child… Second Privilege
Two months from now, I have no idea how I’ll feel. But what I do know is that I’m about to embark on another privilege that’s unlike any other in my life. This mom thing we do is pretty spectacular.