I just unpacked my bags…

February 13, 2006

…and yet, I am busy packing for another guilt trip.

I’m the first to admit that I’m what you’d call an enthusiastic first-time parent.

We were married more than four years before we even decided we wanted to have kids; once decided, it turns out it wasn’t that easy for me to get pregnant. So by the time our little one arrived, two days after our 7th wedding anniversary, it’s safe to assume we were pretty stoked.

I kept a pregnancy journal. We sent out birth announcements. I update her baby book religiously. My husband kept a journal during her first year. We sent out naked baby Christmas cards. We have a baby blog for our far-flung family to keep up with her exploits. And we take far too many pictures of her adorable mug.

Mostly, our friends and relatives express admiration for our enthusiasm. “Wow, that’s so great!” they’ll say when they read her blog. “What a gift that will be when she gets older and can read it for herself!”

But once in a while, we hear this: “I hope you have this much energy for your next baby, too!” Or even better: “You’ll never take as many pictures of your second child. You just won’t have the time or patience.”

Yikes. We would love to have a second child. And of course I plan to chronicle the second pregnancy, birth and infancy as exhaustively as we did the first time around.

But will the novelty have worn off? Will we be too busy juggling kids, careers, and just plain life to update that baby book and start that scrapbook? Will my second child grow up with a feeling of being second-best, not as important, inconsequential?

Yes, I am worrying about this and the second child is still a figment of my imagination. Maybe I do take motherhood way too seriously…

So tell me, fellow parents…if you have more than one kid, what was it like the second time around? Are there any younger siblings out there who felt slighted?

And WHY do people feel compelled to make comments like that in the first place?