These are the comments I get when people see me carrying my son on top of my giant belly, or chasing/ waddling after him with my gigantic third-trimester belly.
Granted, most of society is completely clueless to how to talk to a pregnant lady. (We can all do without the body-size comments, thank you). My cousin recently gave birth to beautiful twin baby boys and she received some of the same sentiments about how truly awful her life was about to become.
I think we can do better.
When I hear these comments I’m not sure what to say, most of the time they’re from perfectly harmless “well meaning” people, and usually older women. What I want to say is this:
Many women would kill to be in my situation.
I, myself, was one of them just a few years ago.
Secondary infertility is a real thing that many families suffer from. In my career I have worked with hundreds of mommas, and many of them are not alone in their grief trying to conceive their second or third child.
We struggled to get pregnant the first time around and honestly, as scared as I am to have 2Under2, it’s a huge relief that we didn’t have to deal with that the second time around. Getting negative pregnancy tests month after month was absolutely heartbreaking. We only had one chemical pregnancy before I found out that my thyroid was the culprit for lack of viable pregnancies, and I mourned that baby throughout my entire pregnancy, and still do.
I have had several clients, friends, and family members go through unspeakable agony as they try for number 2. I honestly thought that because of my thyroid issue I was basically my own birth control, and I’m not super upset to have been wrong. Yes, I really struggled with the idea of loving another child in the beginning, but I'm extremely relieved that we were able to conceive again, and this time without medication. I consider myself incredibly lucky.
I’m grateful for the women who don’t automatically assume the worst when they see my situation. I am already aware how “busy” I will be, or how many sleepless nights I have coming.
How about instead we share advice that pregnant women can actually use (and NOT “sleep when the baby sleeps” FFS!). How about we offer baby gear website recommendations, sleep or lactation centers, blogs, or offer to actually help a momma out rather than add to her growing list of anxieties? A simple, "congratulations!" will also do fine.
Yes, I know that the amount of work I have ahead of me is a great. But I’m also really, really excited for another round of baby snuggles, first moments, and to meet the baby girl who likes to kick me (and sometimes her brother) so hard.