Am I Selfish?

There are a few people pregnant in my office. Obviously since I’ve been through pregnancy, they tend to ask me things, which I don’t mind at all. What inevitably happens next is the questions for me – when are we going to have number two?

It hasn’t been a secret that Chris and I want another baby sometime soon. I have several friends that are “one and done,” and while that’s amazing for them, I know it’s not us. I know the window of us starting to try for another baby is fast approaching, and to be honest, I’m a little scared.

Morning Coffee On Outside Cafe Table With Plant & Menu

Maybe scared isn’t the right word. Nervous, maybe? I’m not sure I’m ready to go through all of it again, not just yet. Please don’t think I’m saying I don’t like pregnancy – it isn’t that. I feel blessed I have (so far) been able to conceive and had a fairly easy pregnancy with Abbie. I remember those first little kicks and how it felt to meet her for the first time. That part – truly amazing. What makes me nervous is the other parts – most of all, sharing my body again.

I hate the way that sounds, because it sounds super selfish. I’m not a selfish person by nature, so I really struggle with putting myself first. But when you’re pregnant and nursing… your body isn’t yours. You’re sharing it with another person, and that means you can’t always do the things you want to do for yourself. For me, that thing is losing weight. After all, when you’re pregnant, you’re supposed to gain weight.

I think I did pretty well with my pregnancy with Abbie, gaining 36 pounds. That weight came off pretty quickly, and since then I’ve been working on the other weight, the weight I’ve been trying for years to lose. For the first time in a long time, it’s actually working – the scale has been consistently going down. I feel motivated. I feel proud of what I’m accomplishing. It’s slow, but it’s progress. That’s what I’m nervous about – putting a stop to all of that. I’m nervous about those numbers.

For a long time, I was over 200 pounds. When we got pregnant with Abbie, I was 211 pounds. I worked my butt off (literally, ha) to get under 200 pounds for a long time. I’ve finally gotten to a point that I’m under it with a little bit of a cushion, but it’s a little bit of comfort. I’m at the point that a bad week won’t put me there, but it’s as if I can still see it, hovering. Like when you pass something driving, but you can still see it in your rearview mirror. I’m trying to get it out of view, but I’m not quite there yet.

That puts me at my dilemma. Using 36 pounds as my estimate, that puts me over 200 again for a pregnancy. It’s something I don’t want. It’s unhealthy for me, unhealthy for a baby, and just plain would make me feel horrible to see that number again. I don’t want to see it. Once I got under that number, I never wanted to see it again. Anyone out there that has battled that milestone may understand… you just want it far, far away from you.

So, I wanted to be at least 36 pounds under 200 when I got pregnant again (164). While I’m getting there, there’s no magic that’ll get me there faster – I’m still 29.6 pounds away.

That brings me to the hardest part – do I really want to put off living my life and growing my family over a number that really only bothers me? After all, I could lose the weight afterward, right? I want to give Abbie a sibling, but I’m really having a hard time reconciling this number in my head, and our planned window of time for trying for number two is getting closer and closer. It’s creeping up on me before I feel completely ready – I feel emotionally, but not physically ready. Does that make sense?

I wanted to be all the way there when we tried for number two. I really thought when Abbie was born that I had plenty of time to get there, but it’s been a slower journey than I planned (always is, right?). Plus, there’s the fact that you just never know how long it’ll take to get pregnant – it could happen right away, or it could take months. Once we officially start trying, I could get pregnant immediately, or I could have a few months to continue getting healthier. There’s just no way to know.

So that’s where my head is lately on baby number two. I don’t know if I’m crazy, selfish, scared, nervous… I just don’t. But I’m not ready just yet. I’m hoping the next few months will change that.

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About Jess

Jess Beer is a full-time working mom of two girls who writes about motherhood, wellness, easy meals and style.

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8 Responses

  1. Good and honest post. I don’t think you are selfish because the wait you want to lose before conceiving would benefit you, the baby, and really your whole family. I gained lots with my first, starting at 194 and coming home from the hospital with my son at 250+. So I know exactly where you are coming from. I also wasn’t watching my diet or overly concerned with my weight. Why not? Well, I don’t know. Ignorant bliss, maybe, but I had to lose a lot!

    When I was pregnant with my second son, my ob/gyn had me follow an eating plan, and I gained 25, but was still over 200 when he was born. She wanted me to gain less than 10, saying that there are diets for pregnant women, not sure about that. I believe a pregnant woman only needs about 300 extra calories a day?? I recommend talking with your ob/gyn, and hopefully that might help you in your decision. But, no you are not selfish!

  2. Totally agree that you are not selfish for thinking this way. Weight loss is slow, hard work in the best circumstances, and the idea of halting your momentum is a tough one to consider. I am not a mom, but am old enough that the majority of my girlfriends have more than one child. All of them have said the same thing – the weight comes off easier with the first than with any subsequent pregnancy. I don’t know if it’s a biological reason or just that you have that much less time when you are raising two or more. You’re already lighter than you were when you got pregnant before, so yay you! But I wouldn’t feel guilty at all if you decide to spend more time getting your weight down to where you’d feel more comfortable before trying again. Once you have 2 little ones, plus your long commute, plus the rest of life’s craziness, you’ll have less mental energy to spend on weight loss. So being at a lower weight would set you up for less weight to worry about once you have baby #2. Just my two cents! 🙂

  3. You’re definitely not being selfish and I can confirm the baby weight does NOT come off as easily the second time! I think it’s a balancing act. We want all of our kids close together (there are 23 months between M & C and we are planning 24-30 months between C and the next one, hopefully). I was in decent shape before I got pregnant with C, and continued to workout 2-3 times a week until I delivered. I don’t have a lot of time to workout right now, most of my exercise consists of babywearing and dancing around the living room 🙂

    I think you really have to figure out what’s most important to you. I wish I had been about 10lbs lighter when I got pregnant the 2nd time, but having the babies closer together was more important for OUR FAMILY. I’m not “old”, but I’d like to be DONE having kids by the time I turn 34…and Will would be 38. I had an easy second pregnancy, but it was exhausting chasing a toddler around and I know a third pregnancy will be even more difficult. We’re all about continuing the chaos! Once I’m done having kids, I can focus a lot more on my long-term weight management goals and how to fit in more consistent exercise into our lives.

    1. You are so right, and I think for us my health is turning out to be more important. I’d really like to avoid preeclampsia in my next pregnancy, and getting healthier will really help with that. I’m just hoping I can keep on this streak I’m on for it to happen fast!

I’m Jess! I’m a working mama of two sweet sisters living in the DC area. This is my space to share inspiration, real stories of working motherhood, recipes, style, and more! I can’t start my day without coffee and always try to show the real side of motherhood – the good and the challenging. I’m so glad you’re here – thanks for following along on my journey!

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