Here’s the thing: I know so many women who are dying to get pregnant and lots of couples who wish for a baby. I’ve been there myself. I had a miscarriage and tried for over a year after that to get pregnant with my son, who is now almost a year old. When I recently discovered that I was pregnant again, however, I didn’t feel happy. I felt shocked and panicked and overwhelmed (before you accuse me of being heartless, know that I feel incredibly guilty about these feelings.) Here’s why I’m struggling to be happy about my pregnancy:
1. I haven’t forgotten the bad stuff. You know how I figured out I was pregnant this time around? I felt like sh*t and everything smelled bad and made me nauseous. After about a week of that, I thought to myself, This is so familiar — it’s exactly the way I felt when I was pregnant. I also clearly remember the pain and pushing of labor, as well as the difficulties of having a newborn, from sleep deprivation to nursing struggles. Not enough time has passed to erase the memory of these challenges.
2. I just got my body back. My hormones were settling down, my baby was finally weaned, and I had gotten (mostly) back into shape…and now the weight gain and mood swings are back.
3. My husband and I were finally having sex again. I feel pretty terrible when I’m pregnant, so having sex isn’t exactly a frequent (or even occasional) activity. It’s also not something I enjoy much until I’m done breastfeeding. So our sex life had pretty much just started back up. Now that I’m pregnant again and feeling terrible, we’re back to not having sex.
4. I’m already overwhelmed. Being a work-from-home mom (or any parent) is no easy feat. I’m barely cutting it as it is, and now I’m going to have two children under two. I feel like I might as well give up on doing anything but mothering, working, and barely sleeping.
5. I’m scared I’m going to lose myself completely. I think that it’s important for parents to maintain a part of their lives that isn’t centered on their kids. Occasional “me” time is really important to my sanity, whether it is a hike, a movie, a date night, or a trip to the grocery store alone…and I don’t have much “me” time at all since becoming a mom. I haven’t had a date with my husband in months. I haven’t had a night of cocktails with the girls in ages. I never have time to exercise. It’s been two months since I had a pedicure, and that’s because I was treated to one for Mother’s Day. Now that I’m about to add another baby to the mix, I’m afraid I’m going to get sucked into a motherhood worm hole and the other parts of me will never see the light of day.
6. We can’t afford another baby. This pregnancy (obviously) wasn’t planned, and we are not in a place financially where we would have decided to have another baby now. It just adds more stress to an already overwhelming situation.
7. I’m afraid that I won’t be able to handle two kids under 2. What if I’m not a good enough mom to manage another child? I’m afraid that another child will show that I’m really not that great of a mom — not like all of those cool, cute moms on Instagram who have multiple children and are always put together and smiling and taking their children with them everywhere they go and don’t seem the least bit overwhelmed.
I’m really hoping that as this pregnancy goes on, and my morning sickness (hopefully) goes away, I’ll feel happier about having another baby. I really do hope it will all be fine. I hope my husband is right when he says that in a year we’ll look back and not be able to imagine life without the new baby. We’ll be so happy and in love. But right now, I’m feeling scared, overwhelmed, and yucky. I’m feeling stupid for not being more careful and preventing this from happening in the first place. (We thought we were being careful enough by avoiding sex during my most fertile days and using the “pull out” method, but clearly we were mistaken.) I’m feeling guilty for not being over the moon about having another baby. I’m feeling like the only mom who has ever felt this way.
Have you ever been less than thrilled about getting pregnant?