Reflections on the differences of being pregnant for the first time when you already 1 kids (that your wife carried) and the differences between being the gestational and nongestational mom during pregnancy.
The plan was always for both of us to carry: Tara would go first and I would go second. One thing I didn’t think about at all was what the difference in pregnancy would be. Comparing both our pregnancy, here’s the most noticeable differences.
You’re only pregnant with you first child once.
This was something I (we) didn’t think about at all. When Tara was pregnant she got my full-time attention. When I got pregnant, Auggie was 6 months old and there was (is) no possible way for Tara to give me the attention I gave her. She (of course) is amazing, and does everything she possibly can to support me, but being pregnant while you have a kid is just a totally different experience.
This realization was the most evident when I started to feel absolutely horrible around 5 weeks. I was later diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum or HG (severe all-day nausea) and was literally sick all the time.
After a couple days of feeling sorry for myself and mourning that fact that I’ll never get to experience being pregnant without a kid already, I got over myself, talked to Tara about it, and she’s been really amazing. The other huge blessing we have is parents and family that are SUPER supportive. This has allowed me to take it extra easy when I need to, although this causes tons of mom guilt about not spending enough time with my son.
Every pregnancy is different and mine has been rough!
My pregnancy has been super rough. Tara’s was overall great and problem free. In relationships in general it’s hard not to compare, with pregnancy I want to compare everything!
Out of all my close friends who have been pregnant, mine has been the most challenging by far. Now (of course) I know there are folks out there who have way worse pregnancies… but back to the ugly comparing monster, my pregnancy has been super challenging for me. HG can be different for everyone, but for me specifically in the beginning I was severely nauseous all the time. At 6 weeks I got a prescription for Reglan which made me feel worst for an hour then gave me a few hours of relief. It also acted like a sedative so I was sleeping 12-14 hours/day. At 8 weeks I could switch to Zofran (because baby’s heart was fully developed) which made my baseline a LOT better and didn’t have any side effects. But I had a very strong aversion to food and smells. Any odor (whether it a traditionally “good” smell like perfume or a bad smell like cigarettes) makes me feel super sick and horrible. This is probably the most challenging symptom as odors are a part of almost all activities. This has lead to me spending a LOT of time cooped up at home.
The only silver lining to feeling sick so early on and still feeling sick is as long as I feel like crap, I know my baby is getting everything he needs. It sounds weird, but Tara didn’t actually “feel” pregnant until she was like 4 or 5 months pregnant. She didn’t have any symptoms (other than being sleepy) and her bump was tiny so we would joke that we would sometimes forget she was pregnant. With this baby and pregnancy, there is a constant reminder that baby is here!
Tara didn’t look like she was pregnant until 4-5 month and her bump didn’t really “pop” until the end of 6 months. I started to show very early, and even though I was losing weight (because I couldn’t stomach to eat anything) my belly was growing and I definitely look pregnant.
Less Fears and Non-Gestational Parent Angst
Once you become parents, you entire lives change in an instant. Even though this is my first time being pregnant, we’re both already moms and have gone through a pregnancy already. This means we know what to expect (for the most part) going into it and there is a lot less fear of the unknown. And although, yes – every pregnancy is different – the major milestones, apt, is the same at high level. This part makes it a little easier and definitely a lot less stressful.
During Tara’s first pregnancy I had a lot of totally unexpected feeling of inadequacy as a mom. Logically I knew we were both the moms, but emotionally I was feeling left out and like I wasn’t going to be the “real” mom. All the emotions totally subsided once Auggie was born (and really they were mostly gone after I started inducing lactation). Because we are both already moms, Tara is feeling pretty much none those feelings, which is awesome.