How Your Second Pregnancy Is Way Different Than the First


Ladies, if you’re thinking it’s time to have a second baby, let me encourage you to go for it. Let me tell you that your second pregnancy and your second attempt at motherhood is so much more relaxing, enjoyable and amazing than the first. And that’s not to say that the first is bad; it’s not. I had a wonderful first pregnancy. It was picture perfect. Pregnant on the first try, perfect little round belly, perfect health, perfect delivery when I went into labor a week early, perfect everything; perfect baby, lost the weight immediately. It was a dream come true.

My second pregnancy resulted in two miscarriages (the first on Mother’s Day, sadly) and a very scary pregnancy in which I was terrified the entire time after the miscarriages. But even then, it was so much more relaxing. It was so much faster, too. And then my third pregnancy, with my twins, was even faster (sure, partly because I went into labor a month early) and more enjoyable despite bed rest and two babies sucking everything out of me.

The deal is this; second pregnancies are much different than first pregnancies, even If they are completely similar. All pregnancies are different, but there is something kind of special about the second time around, and I’m here to tell you what you have to look forward to when you find out that baby number two will arrive in less than a year.

You’re Much More Relaxed

When you’ve already done something once, it’s quite easy to relax. The second time around is not so anxiety-inducing because you have a very good idea of what to expect the entire time you are pregnant. Even if your pregnancy is very different the second time around, you still know what to expect. You worry less, you know when certain things will happen, you have an idea of what each appointment will be like. It’s just much more relaxing since you’ve been there, done that.

Pregnancy Goes by Much Faster

Trust me when I say this; it’s true. When you have a child at home already, you have no time to sit around and daydream about your pregnancy. You haven’t the same idle time you did the first time around, so you suddenly blink and realize that this morning you were newly pregnant and tonight you’re going into labor. That’s how quickly the time passes.

You Worry Far Less

There’s always worry in the back of your mind about your health, your baby’s health, and everything in between. But you do worry less because you’ve already felt the weird feelings, the emotions and all that stuff once before. This means you’re expecting it and you know what it is when it arrives, so you don’t panic quite so much.

You Know What to Expect

Just like the name of the book you read and re-read a thousand times the first time you did this, you know what to expect. Suddenly it all comes back to you, and you have no need to go find that book again. You know what this feeling is, what that feeling is, what’s going to happen this week and how big your baby is. You just know these things, so you get to have a little bit more fun focusing on things that you might not have focused on the first time since you were so busy learning all about what to expect.

You’re Calm

There are a lot of nerves associated with first pregnancies. Trust me, I know. And there are nerves with second pregnancies, too, but you’re so much calmer as a whole. Things don’t freak you out. The changes to your body are fine. The changes to your hair, your skin, your mood, your feelings, your eating habits; it’s all fine. You are okay with them. You are calm because this is not unchartered waters anymore. You are the captain of this ship having already made one successful journey, and you’ve got this.

Labor does not Worry You

I was terrified of labor the entire time I was pregnant with my first. It was going to hurt, I wasn’t going to be able to do it. I was so scared. When I realized I was in labor, it happened fast. My contractions were 2 minutes apart, painful and included back labor right away. An hour later we were at the hospital being told that I was 7 cm dilated and 100% effaced and if I wanted an epidural, I needed it now. And then she was born shortly after, and I felt nothing. The second time, I had my epidural earlier and I felt nothing. With the twins, I went into labor midmorning and had them in the early evening. I had my epidural at 5 cm just to be certain, and they were out in three painless pushes. I mean, there is nothing to fear the second time around.

You’re More Active

You already have a baby, so those naps you want so much; yeah, right. You are so much more active the second time around, and I promise you that it makes you feel so much better. You feel healthier and more energized. You sleep better at night because you were so active and now you’re exhausted. You feel better throughout the day thanks to the fact that you’re on the go. It’s just much more enjoyable as a whole to remain active. And I’ve even heard that being more active makes labor easier, so that’s another plus in this column.

You Enjoy it More

It’s difficult not to enjoy your second pregnancy a little more for all the reasons named above, but also because you know now what you have to look forward to. You will enjoy it more because you know exactly what is going to happen at the end of your pregnancy and you have so much to look forward to. You appreciate it more at the end rather than being so impatient. You know your baby will arrive soon, so you don’t worry. You know your time left alone with your oldest is limited, so you enjoy it. It’s a lot of enjoyment.

Photo illustration by Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images


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