The Difference Between the First and Second Baby

It’s been 11 weeks and I’ve already learned there are huge differences between the first and second child. Drastically different.

During pregnancy, the child birth and after we got home – everything was different.

Accepting advice while pregnant
FIRST : I wanted to hear everyone’s (Aunts, friends, bus drivers, random person who keeps eying my belly from across the skytrain) experiences, advice, ideas, successes and failures. I wanted to hear how they managed to get baby to sleep, what they fed baby when they started solids and where the cheapest diapers are. I wanted to hear their birth stories, good or bad.
SECOND : I would smile and nod to those random people giving me advice on how to handle a cranky baby or teething or what they found were the easiest dinners to make with baby in arms. I’d point out my oldest, taking off while I waddled (the way a 41w pregnant woman does) behind him. I would mention how awesome he is, thank them for their advice and try to dodge their advice on being a mom of two kids.

“How far along are you?”
FIRST : I’m 34 weeks, 4 days, 7 hours and 56 minutes. You knew exactly how pregnant you were and knew how many days until you would meet your precious little baby.
SECOND : Uh, around 6 months? No, maybe eight… What year is it?! You couldn’t remember what day of the week it is, never mind how many weeks pregnant you were. And when you did look at your app to see how far along you were, you’d be rejoicing because of how soon you would get to enjoy a nice tall glass (read : bottle) of wine.

Birth Plan
FIRST : I want to labour at home. I’ll relax in a warm bath, enjoy a cup of hot tea. I’ll take a nap, maybe finish my chapter in “What To Expect While Expecting” or fit in a walk. I’ll go to the hospital in my “birthing robe” where I will gloriously pop out said child without a bead of sweat or a hair out of place. Then, with perfectly intact make up, I’ll pose happily with my little family before we enjoy the peace and quiet while watching baby sleep.
SECOND : GIVE ME ALL OF THE DRUGS!

Drinking While Breastfeeding
FIRST : I wouldn’t drink. At all. I worried that if I drank a sip, baby would need to nurse. He was so sporadic, but even when he was 10 months old, on solids and we were in Hawaii, I stressed about having a drink on the pool deck just in case.
SECOND : Oh, it’s only 4:30pm? I have been enjoying Bailey’s and egg nog a few times this week… Even when baby is due to nurse in half an hour. (I have the same information and same articles I’ve read through both times.. But this time I am willing to accept their information that nursing after a “light” drink, when not feeling the effects, is safe)

You want to hold baby?!
FIRST : Have you coughed or felt flushed or had a sore throat in the past two weeks? Have you washed your hands with soap and water, then used hand sanitizer, then washed your hands again? No? Yeah, please step out of the same room we are in.
SECOND : Sorry, I know you just got in after taking transit, but here’s baby. I’ll be back in an hour.

Pictures of baby
FIRST : Here is baby in the outfit Grandma bought him. And one with that outfit and the hat from Auntie. And here is one with the same outfit and hat and with a poop-face. And another picture of him with him the outfit, hat, poop-face and his teddy bear! How can I decide which to post to Facebook? Let’s post them all!!
SECOND : Here’s my oldest, playing on the living room floor… And in the corner is a foot. I think that’s baby. Or maybe the dog… And here is a picture of Baby, put beside a picture of Toddler. Look at the difference or similarities between the two! Isn’t Toddler so big now? (It’s best that Baby learns to accept that all his thunder will be stolen by Toddler at an early age)

Milestones
FIRST : BABY JUST SMILED! BABY JUST ROLLED! BABY TOOK HIS FIRST STEP! AWW, BABY HAD HIS FIRST COUGH! POOR THING!
SECOND : Oh yeah, forgot to tell you that he’s been smiling for a couple of days now…

Physical Attention
FIRST : You hold him to get him to nap. You hold him to play. You hold him while out for a walk. You check on him ten times a night and stroke his baby soft cheeks.
SECOND : Where did I put him down? BABY?! HEEEEELLLLLO?!

Play dates
FIRST : We had weekly play dates. Sometimes two or three each week. Walks around the block, at each others houses, coffee shops, malls. You name it.
SECOND : Dragged around to big brother’s play dates. Dragged around to big brother’s classes. Dragged around to big brother’s appointments. Dragged around to the park… For big brother to play.

Caffeine
FIRST : I stopped drinking coffee, cold turkey. In the third trimester I started drinking coffee again, but rarely even half the “safe” dose.
SECOND : Can I get an IV set up? It would be faster than drinking the amount I want to, and will, drink.

Safety
FIRST : We baby proofed at 6 months pregnant. I kid you not. We had a jail play area gated and outlets covered. We ditched our glass coffee table for a cheap wooden one from IKEA. We moved all cables and cords out of reach (of a fetus, yes…)
SECOND : We aren’t at the point yet.. But our extent of baby proofing is that we’ve decided no Lego for our oldest until baby is older. That counts for something, right?

Gear/Stuff/Purchases
FIRST : Bouncers, rockers, gliders, swing, exersaucer, jumparoo, playmats, toys, clothes, booties, shoes (for a non-walking lump), crib, bumpers, bassinet, sheets, blankets, hats, carriers, strollers, bath tubs, dishes, bottles, breast pump, wipe warmer, face cloths, wipes, diapers, more diapers, mobile, baby monitor, more toys, more diapers, teething rings, tylenol, more clothes, more diapers, diaper bag, sanitizer bags, breastmilk freezer bags, baby shampoo, baby detergent, baby wash, diaper rash cream, baby oil, baby nail clippers… BABY EVERYTHING! There were so many unneeded purchases made. If I could go back, we would have skipped half the things we bought and still found that we had too many items that we could make do without.
SECOND : We just bought him his car seat for when he outgrows the bucket. Almost everything else he wears, uses and lays on is passed on from his brother. I’ve donated three large boxes of clothes to friends and charity… And I’m still weeding things out as I get to the new sizes of clothes. I’ve sold and donated items – some when Dean was little because they were useless. Take it from me, for those first three months, your child doesn’t need a toy box full of toys… *cough*

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