I remember so vividly how hard it was waiting for my first born. I can still feel the strong sense of impatience like it was happening right now. Not much compares to the emotions of a pregnant woman. Especially one who has gone well over her due date. I have never cried more in my life than the three weeks leading up to the birth of my first son!
The way I felt waiting for my first born could be summed up in one story of irrational emotions. I was wallowing in bed when my husband came home from work. Probably had been there for a couple hours. He came in and gave me the perfect husband speech. It would all be okay. Baby will come. We both smiled, thinking I was okay. But, as I went to get out of bed I hit my knee on our wooden bed frame. I tried to laugh it off, when really it hurt! My husband headed down stairs to relax. Thinking it was safe since I laughed. You guys, within two minutes I was sobbing hysterically. Thirty minutes later, when I was able to control myself, I went downstairs and my husband literally had no idea I had lost it!
Waiting for your new baby is hard! It is knowing that you are getting the best gift ever, but not knowing when it will arrive. We have all checked the tracking status of a package repeatedly, and watched out the window daily, for something we ordered online. It’s that feeling times a million! We are given that silly due date so early in the pregnancy, when the baby is a size of a blueberry. It’s the only date we have to cling to. But, unfortunately, as many moms can attest to, babies don’t answer to due dates. And, we just can’t change that!
With my first born I started my maternity leave 38 weeks. I knew there was no guarantee that baby would come anytime soon. But, I thought maybe it was possible. Every morning I would hop on Facebook and see baby after baby being announced. I did my best to stay patient, but it felt like now that I was on maternity leave there was nothing else to do besides wait for him to arrive.
His due date came and went. I ended up watching at least five baby announcements before he came. It was torture. But, then nine days past his due date my sweet baby finally decided to make his appearance. I said on his birthday that the next due date, would mean nothing to me. It would only give me a guesstimate of when I may meet them. But, I would hardly acknowledge it. And, I am so proud to say that I did, indeed, keep this mind set!
My second baby was late as well. Four days “over due”. But, going over was different this time. There were three main differences going over the second time versus the first.
I was naturally more patient, because I knew how long baby could really wait to be born. I learned first hand, the hard way, that a due date is not a guarantee. There is no way to know when baby will come. Some come early. Mine come late. With my first I knew that, but I couldn’t convince myself to be ok with it. With my second I knew that I could wait nine days or even more after the due date. So, there was no sense in getting impatient. I wasn’t even pregnant for as long, so heck he came early!
The first time around every thought I had was wrapped around what this baby would be like. Forty weeks is a long time to obsess over finally meeting somebody you’ve always dreamed of. But, the second time around I was soaking up the last moments with my first born. Instead of impatiently waiting to just finally meet my baby. My heart did a lot of worrying about what the transition would be for my first baby . I stole every snuggle and every kiss in the days we prepared for his baby brother.
The second time going over I was able to really sleep! When you become a parent, or a parent-to-be, you’re told to “sleep while you can”, but a lot of times that’s easier said than done. Yes, I was sleepy with my first, and I did take naps. But, goodness, all I did all day was wait for him, I couldn’t sleep for 24 hours! The second time around I was totally relaxed. I wasn’t watching the clock, waiting for the days to pass. When you live relaxed in the moment you find time passes fast. Faster than if you’re fretting! Not to mention, I knew that sleep was about to become really limited. I let myself sleep when big brother did. And, it was glorious.
A week into this mom-of-two thing, I wonder if you can chalk differences up to, “been there done that”. I still would never wish going over, especially nine days with your first, on anyone. But, the second time around it was almost a blessing. I never felt annoyed or frustrated. I was able to give my sweet first born extra one-on-one time before he had to share me.
If you find yourself in your first pregnancy going over your due date, try to remember your baby will be here one day soon! And, one day this impatience you feel will only be a memory.