And so it begins.

“I don’t think I’m going to get that sick this time,” says my wife. And then at exactly 6 weeks, the nausea hit full force. She’s still functioning, but she feels terrible and looks terrible (but gorgeous, of course). Luckily she has the rest of March off and can sort of ease back into work in April. I think last time she was feeling better by about 14 weeks.

We’re both surprised by how quickly things are changing. With D feeling rough, I’ve been doing more of the parenting than usual, and J has definitely noticed – she asks for D more often, and is a bit out of sorts. It seems like already the pregnancy is taking D away from J a bit, and like that is the beginning of what is in store when the newbie arrives – a division of parenting in which I’m parenting the toddler and D is parenting the newbie. And we’re thinking more about how hard this is going to be for J -first getting used to having less access to her Mama, and then getting used to sharing us with a new baby as well. It makes my heart hurt a bit.

And the question that plagues me right now is: How on earth can I be there for D and the new baby in the hospital (she’ll be having a planned repeat cesarean), and also make the absence/transition as smooth as possible for J? There is plenty of family to help, but I don’t want to totally disrupt her. Do I sleep at home, or at the hospital? How do I figure out a balance so that I’m not letting anyone down? If anyone has suggestions, I am all ears.

D’s first prenatal appointment was yesterday. She’ll be seeing our GP for a while and then transferring to an OB. She’s decided not to try a VBAC for a bunch of reasons, and we both feel good about that decision. In just under two weeks she’ll have a dating ultrasound, then NIPT at 9 weeks. Because of all the soft marker drama following J’s anatomy scan, we decided to pay out of pocket for NIPT. We just don’t want to go through what we went through last time if the baby has soft markers. It sounds like a weird thing to do, because obviously J didn’t end up having down’s syndrome or anything, so you’d think that if the same thing happened again we’d be calmer about it, but we just want to know. We’ll also find out the sex, which I am looking forward to. I have more of a preference than I did with J, but it doesn’t really matter to me hugely.

This all sound like we’re getting ahead of ourselves – it’s still SO early – for something that’s the size of a pea, but… it’s exciting. I’m trying not to succumb to the terror of everything that could go wrong, like I did the first time, and to instead focus on the most likely outcome – a small new person joining us out here in the world in 7 1/2 months.



3 thoughts on “And so it begins.

  1. Your analysis in paragraph two sounds spot-on–that’s exactly how it went down for us–and if indeed it pans out that way, I will note that the heartache period will feel much longer than it actually is. Clem forgave us the disruption eventually, and now has only a vague memory of life before little sibling. And J, I know, is even younger than C was.

    Regarding your third paragraph, you are right to maintain J’s routine as much as possible, but it doesn’t have to be you who does it. When we’ve watched friends’ kids as subsequent babies are being born/cared for in the hospital, by FAR the most disruptive thing was the non-gestational parent popping in and out of the older ones’ day-to-day. I would say, stay with D & baby and let your caretaker bring J to you there. Bill the time with said caretaker as a super-fun sleepover/special treat (and maybe do a practice run where you and D go away for a weekend pre-baby?) and focus on prepping her for when the baby comes home. My two cents.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your insight. I hadn’t really thought of how the popping in might be disruptive, and was thinking that being home for dinner and bedtime routines would be best – but I can definitely imagine it being very hard for J to see me go again if I do that. D’s mom will be staying with J in our apartment, and my mom and stepdad live upstairs, so hopefully being in her own space with ease things for J. She adores all of her grandparents, so that’s good, too.

      All of the hard parts of parenting seem interminable, and all of the amazing parts so fleeting. Good to remember that neither last, I suppose, and that the heartache of becoming a family of four will get left behind eventually.


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