The Author

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I am a high school English teacher, and mother of two charming little ones of my own. I teach in a high poverty urban charter school, while I live in a typical American suburb that has frequently been rated one of the safest cities in the country. It is a paradox I struggle with constantly, but it is my life.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Baby 2

People said all kinds of things about baby #2. Some I believed, some I did not. Here is what I have found so far and whether I am finding it to be myth or truth.

Labor always goes faster with the second baby. 
MYTH. I was induced with both, really nothing different in the how. Water broken by doctor, pitocin induction with both of them. Vinny (baby 1) was about an 8 hour labor. Tiana (baby 2) was a 12 hour labor. Yeah....

If you have one easy baby, then the next one will be the opposite. 
MYTH. I thought Vinny was an easy baby. (Because he truly was. Everyone told me that he was an easy baby).  He was a good eater. He didn't fuss very much. He slept a lot. Great, easy, happy baby, right? Compared to Tiana... Vinny was difficult. Tiana is SO easy. She sleeps wonderfully. She is so calm. At night, she eats and then pretty much immediately goes back to sleep. She doesn't need to be rocked or swaddled or anything. It makes my nights comparably blissful.

Each baby is different. From the very beginning, they have their own personalities. 
TRUE. Vinny was so alert at the beginning. Now that I see, I think more than the average newborn. Either that or Tiana is overly sleepy, but I think it is the opposite and Vinny was just overly active. Plus, Vinny is definitely a more independent kid, and now I see that this was his personality from the beginning. We moved him to his big crib at 2 weeks old, and I cannot imagine moving Tiana right now. She is SO attached to me and Marc. The only time she really cries is if we are holding her and we go to put her down before she is ready to be put down. She makes this super sad face (like a cartoon frown, it is crazy funny looking) and cries this pathetically sad "Don't leave me Mommy!" cry. Vinny never ever did that when I put him down. He kind of just chilled there.

You will appreciate the baby stage with the second one. 
TRUE. I really, really, really did not believe this to be true, because I did not like when Vinny was so little and I just found myself constantly wanting him to get bigger and get to the next stage (until he was like a year old, and then I was pretty content at each stage). With Tiana, I am loving her being so little. She wants to just cuddle up with her head on my chest all the time, and I had forgotten how great that feels. Especially because this is almost definitely the last time I will do this, I am really enjoying her being so little and cuddly. Vinny has gotten cuddly again as he has gotten older (now he loves cuddling too), but it is different when you can fit the baby's whole body on your chest. I will miss this when she gets older.
The only part about the baby stage that I am excited to get over is the huge vulnerability. Her fragileness makes me crazy. For some reason I am way more nervous with this one. Which brings me to the next one...

You will be a more relaxed parent with the second one. 
MYTH. It is the opposite. I don't know why. Maybe I'm crazy, but with Vinny, I didn't really know anything about babies, so I just assumed everything was normal unless something was very obviously wrong, like when he had really high fevers or stuff like that. With Tiana, since I feel like I know what babies are "supposed" to be like now, I am comparing everything to Vinny, and if she does anything that I don't remember Vinny doing, then I get all nervous that something is wrong. Plus, I didn't worry that much about illnesses or anything with Vinny- I don't know why- but with Tiana, this whole pertussis thing is making me crazy nervous. I think it is partially because I didn't worry with Vinny, and when he got RSV, it was one of the worst experiences of my whole life, so I am terrified to have to go through something like that again, and terrified that it could not end as well.

You will love baby 2 just as much as baby 1. 
TRUE. I doubted this one, but it is true. I don't know how it works, because I never thought that my heart could love another person as much as I love Vinny, but I do truly adore Tiana just as much. More children do truly just overwhelm your heart with that much more love. (Don't read that the wrong way... I am still done with kids. As much as I love these two, I don't need more nor do I ever need to be pregnant again).  :-)

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