There's something very sad about preparing for a second child. Something I never anticipated. As I approach the second half of my pregnancy, I've found myself getting nostalgic for these final months alone with my toddler son. Playing blocks, going for aimless strolls, even raking snow (his idea, not mine). I can't help but wonder if this is goodbye to our very special individual time.
My son is almost two, and he rocks my world. I would die for him. I would kill for him. I would move mountains for him. He fills my heart fuller than I knew love could.
Our time together is undisturbed. He has my full attention, and he knows he's got me wrapped around his little finger. His father and I cater to his every need. We console his whimpers, we cheer on his achievements. We squeal in delight with every new word, every success. He tried broccoli at dinner? AMAZING! He said "poop" before he reached in his pants to show us evidence? BRILLIANT! This little guy has got it pretty good, I'd say.
I already know having two children is going to be twice as much work. Perhaps more. But what I didn't think about was where I would find the time or the energy to meet both their demands and needs. Right now, my son takes up all my time, all my energy. Where do I get more? Is there an app for that?
And that's the easy part. Now that I have a second son growing inside of me, I can't help but wonder where to find the space to love more. How do I love both boys completely, with all my heart, when it feels like my heart is already full to the brim? How do I share my love, joy, and appreciation for both sons without one feeling left out or second fiddle? Will one be second fiddle?
My parents always promised me growing up that they loved me and my two siblings equally, and I believed them. But is this like a mid-life Santa Claus awakening, where I learn the hard, cold truth of parental love and its limitations?
Maybe this was a mistake. Maybe I wasn't meant to have more than one child. What if my heart wasn't built big enough to love beyond that? Or maybe my heart will grow with the new addition. Maybe my love will expand to embrace both children and fulfill them completely.
Of course, I am grateful beyond words to have this second child. I want him dearly, and I love him already. And I know that having siblings is a gift, and a second child will fill our house with more love than ever before. This is the family we've always dreamed of, and we are just months away from a new member joining our team. But I want to stop time right now. I want to hold my son in my arms and cherish him like never before. I want to tell him how much I love him, and that he has taught me everything about what it means to love unconditionally.
I'm ready and up for the challenge of having two kids running around the house, competing for my attention, craving individual time. But I hope my son is ready, too. I hope that after experiencing the good life of "all mom, all the time," he can adjust to the new family dynamic quickly and without fanfare. I hope he welcomes the change over time, and soon finds a best friend and compatriot.
The clock is ticking. Winter turns to spring, and our new addition will be here before long. Until that day comes, I know what to do. I'm going to go outside and rake more snow ("More! More!" he'll say as he watches eagerly), I will help him piece together his train set, I will wipe his tears and kiss his forehead. He has a little brother on the way, but his mommy loves him fiercely. And even though he must say good-bye to being an only child, a new world awaits him with a sibling. I'm confident of that.
Originally posted on Reno Mom's Blog.