I was laughing the other night with a friend over the differences between having your first and second kid. It’s so funny how much more relaxed you become. I can only imagine how you feel with each subsequent kid. I think I was already pretty easy going with Rowan, so poor little Finley, no special treatment for her. Ha! Still the same amount of love though!
I thought it would be funny to list out some of the major differences between kid one and kid two…
1. I only took 1 pregnancy test. With Rowan we went back to the store twice that very night. I peed on like 6 sticks with her. With Finley I took 1 and was done. I just knew.
2. I did not read a million books. In fact I didn’t even open one. With Rowan, I read every weekly update/report there was on the baby’s progression. With Finley I peaked on Baby Center every so often but that’s it.
3. I hardly remembered how far along I was until the very end, and by then you for sure know every day closer you are to getting that baby out!. Those mid 20’s weeks all seemed to blur together.
4. I was way less cautious about everything having to do with being pregnant. I was smart of course, but I realized you didn’t have to be a crazy person. I ate things off “that list” with moderation. I went in hot tubs (kept not too hot and not for too long) and I drank a wee bit of wine towards the end too.
5. I did not prewash all the baby clothes before she was born.
6. We didn’t buy anything new for Finley except we did get a new swing. And of course I couldn’t help but buy some new clothes. Any excuse right? With Rowan I thought we needed everything and we needed it right then. Guess what? Babies don’t need a whole heck of a lot.
7. Once Finley was here, there was no addiction to remembering the number or pee/poops she had or number of feedings and how long ago. I had like 4 apps that basically all did the same thing with Rowan. We’ve been going with the flow with Finley. Following her lead.
8. We let her sleep right in bed with us. No cosleeper. And I wasn’t terrified of rolling on her or her being smothered in blankets and oooh I slept good! The fear they instill in new parents- good golly! I remember thinking oh my gosh! If I fall asleep in bed with Rowan in my arms she is going to die.
9. We moved Finley to her crib, in her own room way faster than with Rowan. We all felt ready way sooner. And guess what? We let Finley sleep on her belly. Gasp! With a blanket. Double gasp!
10. I didn’t freak when Rowan tried to feed her a chocolate popsicle.
11. Because Finley was gaining weight just fine, I never woke her up to eat just because 3 hours had passed.
12. After 6 weeks I stopped referring to Finley by how many weeks she was when someone asked. We always just say something like “she’s almost (insert number) months”. With Rowan we milked that weeks thing way too long.
13. Not pushing/dying for the next milestone. With Rowan I was always just so excited for the next phase. Always buying the next new thing she might need before she even needed it. Now I realize just how fast they grow up. I know each new stage will come so I better enjoy the one we are in now before it’s gone.
14. I’ve taken way, way more pictures of Finley (sounds absurd because we have a lot of pictures of Rowan) but looking back I wish I had more of little baby Rowan. I’m trying to capture all the sweet moments with Finley.
15. This one is my very, very favorite! With Rowan I wasn’t always confident when someone disagreed with my parenting choice. It would make me feel judged, upset and that I wasn’t a good Mom. It’s taken a while but now no matter what mean or catty thing someone has to say about my choices I can laugh and shrug it off. I will gladly stand up for myself and for friends over decisions made. I love that we all parent differently. I wish we would be more kind to each other as mothers. I am always learning and I do make mistakes, but I do always try to make the best decision for our family. I know that, Kev knows that and at the end of the day that’s all that really matters.
What were the differences for you between your first and second (or third, forth, & fifth)…
Finley’s headband is of course from our favorite shop… Little Hip Squeaks!
So sweet. Almost makes me want another…almost. 🙂
I don’t have any babies yet but the time is drawing near…I love that you ate food off “that list”, had a sip of wine near the end and let her sleep on her tummy. I’m an eighties baby and I survived all of those (not to disrespect people who chose to stick to the rules closely- I agree with not mother-shaming). I hope I have the strength to stand up for my choices when the time comes.
And P.S. she is adorable! 🙂
I hear ya! This all sounds very familiar and lovely. It’s so nice to feel familiar with parenting this time round.
I agree with you, it is better more relaxed not it, but the time has passed very quickly the small and has two years and I learned will not have time for anything with two?, It is much more savvy because we have been so above and to Alexander, is totally different. Kisses and happy Thursday.
Oh so trueâ€¦With our four boys I can really relate. To add another dimension though we had the first three so close together, then a six and a half year break before the fourth. So not only were we seasoned, we also had the perspective of knowing that they’ll grow up both fast (:() and also ok, regardless of a lot of the little things that we thought we had done wrong, etcâ€¦Oh yeah, and we were older and tireder. 🙂 haha.
Love this post.
You’re doing awesome!!
She is so adorable! I can’t really relate to any of this mainly because we only have one at the moment but it was really interesting to read. And of course 15. was my favorite! It’s sad when some want to belittle others for doing things differently and like you said, I wish moms would be nicer to each other when it comes to that. 🙂
Some of the things you mention make total sense and it’s good you’re relaxed, but some are certainly not in line with what the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends for SIDS prevention. It is recommended infants sleep placed on their back with no blankets on a firm mattress. There has been a significant reduction in SIDS deaths after they began recommending this. Obviously you can do what you want, but it’s good to let your readers know that this is not considered the safest way to put your infant to sleep in the opinion of professionals.
And this is not one of those instances where you are being judged as a mother. This is about you as a blogger being an influencer, like it or not, due to your readership. You may be fine being so relaxed, but presenting a huge SIDS factor like it’s no big deal and even mocking it with the “gasp”… It just comes across as a tad uninformed.
Number 10 made me laugh out loud! I’ve only recently discovered your blog but I have really enjoyed reading what you have to say as I have only just had my first baby (almost 3 months!) Whilst I can’t comment on having another much of what you said rings true and I can already imagine parenting differently with number 2. I have already stopped pre-washing everything!!
@Lynn Thank you for your comment. My blog will always be my voice and I don’t think I need to inform readers of every professional opinion. That is their own job and I will respect what they choose to do with their children. I don’t think my comment will cause a mass out break of belly sleepers. My comment was also not uninformed. I have done my reading on the subject and came to my own conclusion.
Adore your words about motherhood the second time around. We are planning to have a second in the future and it’s great to hear from someone going through it.
I agree completely with your words about judgement of other mothers. Everyone has an opinion and I think many times they just need to let it go. Parenthood and our children are so individual-how can we have an opinion about something we only know a short fraction about?
I love this post since we have a darling 2 year old girl and are expecting baby number 2 this year! And I think someone would have to live under a rock to not know about all the safe practices to prevent SIDS. As a new parent every book you read, every baby website you check, every doctor’s visit, advice from other moms – they all teach and warn about how to prevent. Jen does have influence but it’s not her job to be the American Academy of Pediatrics. She is a mom and she writes from her experiences (which are great!), not from a dr’s perspective. The only way our little girl will sleep is on her belly, it has always been that way. We have tried other things, we have monitors, we check on her, we trust our parenting instincts. Parents are tired of warnings and fear from everywhere they turn…ok, off that soapbox now! 🙂
Pre-washing and reading books! Ha! That is so funny how that changes with #2!
I also found my “motherly” voice when it came to #2 with the doctors. Ultimately you know your child best and you make the decisions that you think are the best on them best on their circumstances and your family life.
This was so fun to read! I’m only on baby #one, but I look forward to a more relaxed time with baby-two!
this is so true! i have three children (8, 4, and 7 months) and i have kind myself becoming more and more relaxed each and every child. even in my discipline! i know what things need to be worked on right away and what things can wait a few months to figure out with each child. thanks for posting this! xo
Yes. I am soooo with you. While I only got to experience one pregnancy with each child I have become more and more relaxed. I don’t care that my almost 10 month old isn’t crawling. Yes I know it’s because “I hold him too much”. I don’t care. He could very well be our last and I want to soak it in. And yes. With this baby we had him sleep on his belly. Milestones will come in their own time. He will be 5 before I know it so I truly want to soak in every ounce of his babiness now.
gorgeous, gorgeous post!! love to hear about how you’ve relaxed into having two children. I don’t have any kidlets yet, but hearing how the second has continued to bless you and your family in different and lovely ways, in addition to an already beautiful first child….well, it just gets me so darn excited about having kids! Thanks for sharing. loved this.
It’s so cool to see how differently you write about motherhood now. I remember how nervous and insecure your writing sounded when Rowan was little, but now your writing about it comes off much more confident and calm. I like your “go with the flow” mentality about it all (especially because, as I’ve heard, you kinda HAVE to when toddlers are involved), and hope to one day take motherhood on with that kind of positive attitude. 🙂
My two are both just a few months behind yours, but our second is a little man. I read this at 2 am while up nursing him and had to check back in for comments-this is such a realistic mama post! Thanks for sharing 🙂
I’m so with you about all except #8 – it’s def. somewhat dangerous- A friend’s child fell off her chest at one month when they fell asleep together- she was fine, thank god, but it was a long night in the emergency room and many worries in the coming months that she didnt have any damage (she’s now 7 and completely amazing and fine, but that is scary!
love this! we just had our first 8 weeks and 1 day ago. 😉 haha
i feel like i’m pretty laid back but am sure that with the second i will be even more so. and yes! love the point on taking pictures. i have tried to video little clips of all the cute things he does because it’s amazing how fast they grow out of little quirky, cute antics. i always want to remember.
I don’t have kids but I really enjoyed reading this pos!
I hope I am this relaxed when I have kids 🙂 I’m not sure if I will be since I’m a pediatric nurse so I will probably catastrophize every little thing! But I admire your parenting approach!
you are such a beautiful, wise mama. you can see it in your face, hear it in your words. so much of this resonates with me. how awesome we both have such little ladies!! xoox elizabeth
I love everything about this post.
This is a brilliant post. I am totally keeping it for if/when I have another bebe.
Love this post! I can totally relate to most everything you said. I’m due with my second in a few weeks, and my little girl will be turning 2 the same month. I’ve definitely relaxed during this pregnancy and it’s made it so much more enjoyable!
I am 7 weeks away from kid number 2 arriving and I am so excited for everything you have mentioned. Especially how I already feel so much more confident in my abilities as a mother, I feel I’ve really grown up since having her, still the same me, but with way fewer insecurities, once I got used to being a mom (about 6-months in) I really realized what was important, and the things I was stressing about before didn’t really matter any more. My daughter’s first year flew by so fast, all I want to do with baby number 2 is sit and watch him/her non stop.
I stumbled upon your blog post and had to comment because I, too, have a Rowan and a Finnley. But mine are boys. 😉
i loved reading this! it sounds like you can just sit back and really enjoy being a mom. i have often thought about what i will feel and experience when i have a second baby and i love that i can look forward to a less anxious heart 🙂
I am 2 weeks a way from the birth of my second daughter, I think this post said exactly what I have been feeling throughout this pregnancy. I feel much more relaxed about it all. Congratulations to you and your lovely family.
This is awesome. We don’t feel ready for #2 quite yet (would love to hear how you made that decision!) but I am hoping that I am more confident next time and more laid back with scheduling! Oh, and I pray postpartum is soo much easier 🙂
Love this! I haven’t had a second yet, but I can tell this post is so true.
I have four kids. Ages 16 1/2 to 6 1/2. It’s true that you get more relaxed as you have children. With your first, it’s worry about everything. With your fourth, it’s why worry?
I had my first in 1996, and it was put him on his back to sleep. I was born in 1976, and I would only sleep on my stomach. It was the best thing at the time. Times change.
SIDS is real, it’s scary and it does happen. As a parent you weigh the options of everything you’ve heard, you’ve read, people tell you, etc.
Jen, you do what’s best for your children. Those of us who understand will still be here. Those who don’t, well they can read something else.
I love this post! One thing that has always attracted me to your blog is your honesty.
Our first is a mere 2 months old and I feel like I act the way you described yourself acting with your second – I guess that’s a good thing!
You are so right – mothers need to be more kind to each other. Whenever I get some unsolicited parenting advice, I think of that quote from Robert Downing Jr: “Smile, nod, agree, and do whatever the f*** you were going to do in the first place”. Brilliant, right?!
Oh, Jen. You nailed it. I’m expecting my second daughter in September and my husband and I keep talking about how different it is this time around. Our girls will be 19 months apart and it seems like just yesterday we were fretting over every detail of our firsts arrive. With Number Two, we know she won’t have a crib (or room) until after she’s here. It’s so nice to know we aren’t alone.
i love this post. and i totally agree, at the end of the day you have to do what’s best for your little family! and that’s all that matters. your girls are adorable!
Oh what a lovely post!!
I so agree with this, although i was very relexed and confident with my first one it was so much easier and more relaxed with my second girl!
Oh and for all these SID comments here…I come from iceland who happenes to be among the 3 countries consisently with the LOWEST sid percentage in the world..our babies sleep with DUVETs from day one,most people still put them on their tummies and a soft teddy is very common in there too!! I am now in australia who is very strict with all their “rules” and regulationsand still one of the highest SID’s in the world..so its a complicated thing..sid rates going down have more to do with better doctors (as in they now find the cause rather than labeling everything sid), less drinking and co-sleeping together, and smoking has gone down..if you actually read medical journals (and I do!!) cause and effect is not always as i seems!
Sorry for a long post, i just found these comments a bit rude..I wish mums would embrace each other more! Most of my friends do things very differently from me and alot of things with their kids that i wouldnt, but more power to them! We are all doing the best we can, with what we have, in a way that works for OUR family!
Our babies are so robust, they want to survive and thrive and all threw history they have survived their parenting..im sure this generation will too!
I loved this post. I’ve always said that if….that’s a big if….we were to have a second child I would do things differently. I’m not suggesting that that’s what you’ve done, but for myself, I do things differently. I too would go with the flow based on the baby’s needs. I stress way too much over things and I need to be more relaxed.
I too dont have have babies yet… But that time is coming… Probably why I have taken to all these home/parenting blogs… Nesting is for sure coming into play…
Proud Auntie to two kids and being second child myself it IS super funny to see how # 2 is a much more “relaxed” experience…
I wanted to post my first comment because i really appreciated your note about #15. Not paying attention to peoples parenting judgements… That was really hard for me during the wedding process… Inlaws etc making comments about the way we did things, or our choices… it was honestly the hardest part for me about the wedding. I know it will rear its head again with the birth of our future kids… I really hope I can be strong and learn the lessons from the wedding and just roll with all of the judgements and advice that will so easily rollll off peoples tongues-…. Like you said as long as you and you hubby feel good about choices and are aligned ( at least MOST of the time 😉 then thats all that matters… Right!
Remind me of all of this in a few months would ya?
Glad I found your blog.
#12 made me laugh, because even though i only have one i always thought that it was absurd. i remember telling a sister-in-law that she was almost 2 months after she’d asked me how many weeks she was!
This is awesome! Thanks for posting! I’m pregnant with my second, and have already felt some of the same things that you went through. I anticipate very similar behavior to yours when the second one comes this fall. 🙂
Thanks for this post. I’m pregnant with my first and have been much more relaxed about it than some of my friends (I chucked when you said you ate things off “that list.”). Becoming a parent is stressful enough that it’s ok to relax a bit.
I just love this post. I’m really looking forward to expanding our family and love hearing about it’s like to have the ‘second child.’ I just think your approach to parenting is wonderful and I love reading along. =)
I’m halfway through my second pregnancy and everything you said is so true! I feel way more relaxed about things, I forget how many weeks along I am exactly, I haven’t cracked a book, etc… I’m imagining things will be way more relaxed when baby girl #2 arrives. I love that you are letting her sleep on her stomach and using a blanket! And not feeling guilty about it! 🙂