When you're pregnant for the first time you get all the good stuff. You know, the compliments, the concern, the questions, the gifts — you name it and it's practically yours. It's a truly delightful time to be alive. But if you become pregnant with a second, most of that good stuff disappears. Everyone's like, "Well, you've been there and done that," so you're not as celebrated as you should be. "You're no less amazing than you were the last time you were pregnant," is just one of the many things moms on their second pregnancy need to hear from you. Why? Well, because it's true.
Once everyone found out about my first pregnancy, I was celebrated and planned for the future with stars in my eyes. I received all the glowing compliments and the best gifts possible. I felt like a damn Queen. With my second, however, it was completely different. Instead of all the "you look great" conversations, it was either silence or back-handed compliments ("You didn't gain as much with this one!"). Come on, people. Is it really that hard to say something nice to an already insecure, pregnant, tired mom?
If you aren't sure what you can say, here are some things moms carrying their second baby really love, and deserve, to hear. Learn them. Use them. Be a hero.
I never felt like I glowed during my first pregnancy. My hormones were horrendous so I suffered through severe mood swings, awful breakouts, hair loss, and extreme morning sickness. If someone had told me I was glowing, I'd have screamed. With my second pregnancy, I didn't feel fabulous or anything, but I wasn't dealing with the same physical symptoms. So when some told me I was glowing, it lifted my spirits immediately. I didn't even matter if they meant it.
"You're Already A Great Mom"
The second pregnancy makes you doubt what the hell you're doing. I second-guessed everything because, well, I didn't want to let my existing child down by being there for my newborn. I was scared and insecure and just sure I was going to mess everything up. To hear I was doing great at this mom thing already would have meant the world to me.
"You're Barely Showing"
I knew damn well I started showing the day I took my pregnancy test but by the kindness of strangers telling me how great I looked (read: not as bloated as I really was), I felt a little more confident and faced my days with a skip in my step.
"Let Me Help With Something"
It's hard being pregnant when you already have a little one to care for — especially if your pregnancy is mentally and physically exhausting. My partner worked a lot, my family wasn't close by, and I was labeled high-risk which meant I couldn't be the mom I wanted to for my 4-year-old daughter. If someone had told me they wanted to help with anything, it'd have been the happiest day of my life.
"You Deserve A Night Off"
No better words have ever been spoken when you're pregnant with your second kid. Don't underestimate the power of a little compassion. Chances are, that mom is tired and you're the difference between her giving up for the day and you giving her life.
I always felt "blah" during pregnancy. My clothes were uncomfortable, I was uncomfortable, and I because of bloating and weight gain, I didn't feel as pretty as I had before. Confidence can be lackluster after morning sickness and chasing a toddler all day, so tell that mom how beautiful she is.
And mean it.
"Your Kids Are So Lucky To Have You"
When I was pregnant with my second, I felt like I was failing in so many ways. Because my pregnancy was high-risk, I was limited in what I could do. I was hard on myself, and probably more than I should've been. If you know a mom going through her second pregnancy, remind her how lucky her babies are to have her. How the world would stop turning without her in it. How you wish you could be more like her. They may just be words to you, but to her they're a reminder of all the things she's doing right.
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