Finding out you’re successfully pregnant for the second time brings a lot of excitement; just as the first, even though you have a better understanding of what to expect. However, do keep in mind that every pregnancy is different. This is also why we shouldn’t compare the way women handle their pregnancies (I will talk about this in my next post). My second pregnancy was completely different! It was more difficult than my first pregnancy; emotionally, mentally and physically – add caring for a toddler to the mix and that kind of sums it up. I had very different symptoms that came with its own health complications. On the other hand, some of the things I was overly concerned about with my first pregnancy, I was more relaxed with during my second, because I now knew the facts vs myths.
Here are some of the differences between my second pregnancy and my first:
Mental Well-being: During my first pregnancy, I was able to exercise and work up until a few days before giving birth. However, with my second pregnancy, I was placed on complete bed rest at 27 weeks. This was due to a ruptured membrane which caused a significant amount of amniotic fluid to leak from me. The bed rest was lifted at 36 weeks – when the baby and I were in the green zone, meaning he was big and healthy enough to join us. This was the hardest part of my pregnancy mentally, because I’m an overly active individual and other than missing out on being able to move freely, I was also unable to have as much fun with my toddler as I normally would. I didn’t even feel like blogging or reading a book, as I’m not accustomed to doing those things from the confines of a bed. I even found it harder to pay attention to some of the necessary requirements of pregnancy, like taking my prenatals daily, despite them being on my nightstand.
Symptoms: I did not have any major symptoms during my first pregnancy. I had heartburn, but this was only when I ate spicy food; Braxton Hicks contractions and my labour was only 8 hours and 30 minutes. However, my second pregnancy was filled with symptoms from day one. For the first three months, I had skin problems; then as early as four months in the heartburn began (and not only with spicy food but with almost anything acidic and greasy). At the beginning of month eight, I experienced pelvic girdle pain and severe Braxton Hicks Contractions, way worse than my first pregnancy. On the bright side, labour this time was shorter. I got admitted to the hospital at 7:30 am and by 1:30 pm my boy made his entrance into the world.
Breastfeeding: During my first pregnancy, breastfeeding was very difficult because my daughter refused to latch on properly. We only managed to breastfeed for two months, after, I mainly had to pump and store the milk for her to be bottlefed. While with my second pregnancy, my son is latching on perfectly and also the milk supply is much more than with my first. Now I can pump 12oz for my son, while with my daughter I barely got 4oz. out.
There really is no one size fits all adventure with pregnancy, it differs from person to person and from children to children. I am truly grateful for both experiences, it reiterated for me that no pregnancy goes the same. My advice is to just take it one day at a time, be open-minded and enjoy your growing bump and the entire journey.