During my first pregnancy, I was obsessed with doing everything the "right way." With my second pregnancy, I was obsessed with doing everything the smart way. I knew what had worked (body pillow), and what was a waste of my time and energy (curating a delivery playlist). I'm sure that, from the outside, my shortcuts just look like ways a lazy mom handles her second pregnancy and, hey, I'm completely and totally OK with that. I will wear that "lazy mom" badge with honor because your second pregnancy can be rough.
My daughter was not quite two when I (intentionally) became pregnant with my son. She was still breastfeeding before bed, and the combination of caring for a clingy toddler while navigating the first trimester (complete with constant nausea and utter exhaustion), made for a very different pregnancy than what I had originally experienced. I couldn't just take care of myself; There was another little person making demands on my time and patience. I remember anger setting in around the beginning of my second trimester. It probably came from the deep resentment that no matter how much my co-parent tended to our daughter, there still so much of me that was needed, while all of me was consumed by growing a new life, working a full-time job, and, you know, trying to shower occasionally.
So, subsequent pregnancies may appear to be a more cavalier experience by "seasoned moms" but trust me, we are anything but slacking off. We're just stockpiling energy and brainpower for when the new baby arrives and the current baby inevitably rebels. If you are thinking of adding to your family, consider trying these ways a lazy mom handles her second pregnancy. You're welcome.
My firstborn was a winter baby and, because of the weather, I felt trapped during my entire maternity leave. It was too cold to take her out, everyone was too sick to come visit, and long hours of darkness compounded the feelings of isolation a lot of new moms like me experience. The second time around, I didn’t want to work so hard for human contact after having a baby. I wanted my maternity leave to happen during the summer, and it actually worked out. My son was born in July and getting out and about with him postpartum was almost effortless, though extremely sweaty.
With my first pregnancy, I bought some new bras throughout the trimester to keep up with the increase in size. Postpartum, I had nursing bras for the entire first year, and then treated myself to a couple of new ones to reflect my newer, smaller (flatter, droopier) chest. The second time around, I had no patience to try on bras every morning to see what fit that day. I lived in sports bras for nine months and it was glorious.
With a toddler around, my patience was thin. I didn’t bother waiting to “pop” the second time around, nor did I want to be anything less than totally comfortable. If that meant swimming in maternity clothes during the first trimester, so be it.
I knew the drill. I had no questions, so I just wanted to get in, and get out of my check-ups. After all, I had Preschool open houses to attend.
Who has the energy to nest the second time around? All the newborn clothes and swaddling blankets were still in my daughter’s dresser, already clean (though a bit stained), and ready to go. I pulled the box of baby toys my daughter no longer played with from under a crib and, well, new baby prep complete.
Who can kneel down next to a tub to clean a feisty toddler on a regular basis when you’re pregnant? Diaper wipes work wonders on days (weeks?) between proper baths.
Activate the automatic re-ordering function of toiletries, diapers, and other kid-centric items retail websites and you never have to run out of anything. Just, you know, set a reminder to cancel the order at some point after the baby is born. Nothing like a 208-count box of newborn diapers showing up when your baby has been crawling for a month.
My neighborhood is the best. We have a community listserve and friends of expecting families put out a call for neighbors to sign up to deliver dinner in the months following the new baby’s arrival. It is the best thing ever. Twice a week, for almost two months after my son was born, people came to my house — strangers, even — with food. Complete meals, ready to eat, or to be stashed in the freezer for reheating, for the three of us. I’ve returned the favor many times since; I know what a huge help it is to not have to think about meal planning in that blurry insanity of parenting a newborn with a toddler running around.
There’s no time, or patience, or dexterity for buttons when you’re about to have another baby. Elastic, velcro and just not bothering to button my pants under my tunic tops is how to eliminate major pregnancy-related frustrations.
“Can you be a big girl and get Mommy’s socks?” My two-year-old loved feeling like a tiny adult, helping me around the house. So maybe I took advantage of that when I headed into my third trimester, asking her to run little errands around the house so I wouldn’t have to heave myself off the couch so much. Win-win, right?
During my first pregnancy, I was determined to squash every outdated myth about what a woman who is expecting could be capable of. I kept up an intense fitness routine, taking my last spin class on my due date, and politely turned down help. I was trying to prove pregnancy didn’t undermine any of my power, but I think I was only trying to prove that to myself. The second time around, I had nothing to prove. I accepted every seat, glass of water, and second dessert (don’t judge) offered to me. I knew I had a finite amount of time before this care and consideration of my condition ran out, so I worked it.