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It seems as if everyone has their own pregnancy tips when you have your first baby. However, they don’t stop after baby number one’s arrival! That’s why today I want to share practical tips for your second pregnancy from a mom who’s been there!
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1. Reevaluate Maternity Clothes
Give a good hard look at your maternity wardrobe. Some people go all out crazy and spend tons of money on this second wardrobe. But we simply couldn’t afford to do that since we’re still living on one income. Determine what you need and what you have that will already work. This may change throughout the pregnancy as you get bigger, but at least you’ll know what you have and won’t need to buy more than necessary.
Another thing to seriously consider while looking at your maternity clothes is how toddler friendly they are. I did not realize how many of my maternity tops were “grab happy fun” for my toddler. Sitting in church and realizing half your bra is showing is NOT the way to find this out! Check at home first. 🙂
2. Go Through Your Baby Items
Look at your baby items. What do you really need for baby #2? We had gotten rid of a few things due to lack of storage in our old apartment, so we had to replace a few items. Our son had also ruined a few things, so we replaced those as well. Knowing this and going through everything early on gave us a chance to buy items at a reasonable price or request them as gifts. We weren’t sure if we were having boy #2 or girl #1 this go round, so clothing was still an issue – but there always seems to be a surplus of cute baby clothes at baby showers. 😉
3. Consider Another Childbirth Course
Yes, you’ve already been through the entire process one time, but how well do you really remember your first child’s birth? Some of us remember it a great deal, while others may not. I personally ended up getting blood clots after our son was born, so there were parts of the hospital stay that were a bit blurry as the experience centered more around me than him.
For these reasons, I chose to take a second childbirth class. You can feel free to laugh at me if you’d like, but I’ve heard numerous people say that each pregnancy and delivery are different, so I wanted to be as prepared as possible. Reading through the course material gave me the flexibility to go through it at my pace! I wasn’t forced to drive somewhere and sit through a class filled with mostly first time moms who asked questions I already knew. Instead, this course allowed me to get to the questions I had. You can get the full 1+1=3 course here. (Is money tight? I hear ya! You can try Hillary’s free course here.)
4. Plan Ahead
Think about what you want to do the same or differently with your second child. You’re no longer a clueless, inexperienced parent. You’ve got one child already and you’re probably doing a fabulous job of raising him or her! So what do you want to do the same? What should you do differently? Yes, plans can change and things may not always go the way you want – but having discussions with your spouse early on can save you both the stress and hassle of
We, for example, know that we intend to follow much the same food guidelines as we did with our first. However, we may introduce cereal a little sooner if baby #2 has the appetite of his or her older brother. I also know what to try sooner when it comes to breastfeeding. We really struggled in this area for the first month, so this time I have a lot of strategies to put into place to make it easier. But we’ll switch to formula if need be, and we’ll probably make that switch sooner to save everyone the anxiety and stress.
While you’re doing all this planning, think about where baby #1 will stay when you go into labor with baby #2. We had about four different options ready to go, just in case. Plus we had plans for a “weather home” since we live in South Dakota and I was due in mid-March. You just never know what plans Mother Nature may have, and I didn’t want them to include a roadside delivery while we drove the 45 miles to the hospital!
5. Prepare Baby #1
There are so many ideas out there on preparing baby #1 for baby #2. You can do as much or as little as you would like, but I’m of the mindset that you can never over prepare. 🙂 That’s why I bought the book When Baby Becomes Big Sibling. After reading through it, Andrew and I decided to buy a baby doll and start getting little man J used to the idea of having a baby around the house.
We bought Hello, Baby and I’m a Big Brother. The first we gave to him about two months before the baby came so we had a lot of time to read it to him and help it sink in. The second book was given to him when he came to the hospital to meet his new sibling. 🙂
We also bought a realistic baby doll to help pretend and prepare for the new baby. About two months before baby came, we would practice for a little bit each day. At first we just talked to and held baby gently. There was a lot of talk about “nice” touches. Then we brought down the baby swing and practiced with that. Then we bought down the Rock N Play and practiced with that. Next was the car seat. Finally we practiced with the bouncer. We saved this for last because we thought that would be the thing little man wanted to crawl into most. Saving that for last helped him realize that it was for baby. He has his toys and items, just like baby has hers. 🙂
With these five practical tips for your second pregnancy, you’ll be prepared to start (or continue) your pregnancy journey once again. Remember, you’ve been there before, and you’re doing fabulously as a mom! This time around will be just as good, if not better, since you have a better idea of what to expect! Good luck!!
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