Late last night I lay in bed in the silence, my head buzzing with the long list of tasks for tomorrow, the ‘terrible twos‘ toddler asleep on the floor above, my partner on the floor below; unwinding after his long day at work, and I became aware of the silence. It was just me. Just little old me. Oh…and you bump. Of course! You were there too – and I almost forgot about you.
I have been doing that a lot lately.
I thought about the last time I felt you kick…worried momentarily that it was a while ago, stroked your casing, and good as gold you kicked to let me know you were still there. A tear formed in my eye and I spoke aloud to you.
“Sorry (new name we have decided on – the fourth one so far), it’s your mummy, I promise I will take better care of you from now on.” I said, aloud, in the dark. Hoping my partner couldn’t hear me as he would worry I had finally snapped.
When people ask me “how’s bump?” I think “what b…oh!” I say “Yes, it’s fine (insert a massive moan about backache, heartburn, sickness, exhaustion, depression, how fat I am etc)”. Amazing to think with your brother it was all I could think about, I savoured (waited for) every “how’s bump?”, showed him off, loved it when people noticed he was there, I knew what week and how many days I was, I was slightly obsessed with my state. I never felt that heavy or fat (except at 42 weeks).
Dearest bump the 2nd,
I feel terribly guilty about how I have treated you throughout this second pregnancy (well, I suppose it’s your first).
I am sorry if it feels like I have taken you for granted. When I had Bump one – it was all new to me, to us, and a huge adventure. I had time to savour every milestone – now I don’t have time to pee (which I need to do every five minutes). I’m stressed out with running our household (whatever that means : cleaning) and controlling your older bro. My life seems busier than it did two years and nine months ago.
I am sorry I haven’t been as excited. I should have been more thrilled to feel you kick, which you do so well and so often. I should have been more excited about seeing you at your scans (not almost inconvenienced that I had to get your brother a babysitter and go all the way to the centre of town for my appointment).
I am sorry for what you’ve heard. All your brother heard was Whale music and my sweet utterances (in my head, sure your dad would disagree) – you have listened to me raising my voice*, more times than is probably right, to your brother, my snappy voice to your dad, my sobbing voice to your grandmother. And you’ve heard ‘The Friggin Tiger who came to tea’ about 675 times – are you starting to get sick of it too?
I am sorry for what I have consumed. When your brother was a bump I was healthy (as healthy as I get) and I avoided all no-go pregnancy foods. With you I have just carried on as normal. And I ate pate that once. And the wrong cheese too. I’m really sorry.
I am sorry for how I have acted. With your brother I got a taxi to work and barely moved off the sofa. With you, bump, I went down this five times with your brother, at four months pregnant:
I am sorry we haven’t named you. Well, we are sorry we are now on our fourth name choice in six months. When I discuss names with your dad sometimes he shrugs and says “mmm…I could go with that”. And even yesterday he said “sorry, it sounds like you’ve made me a sandwich – not like I am picking my son’s name…” We were certain of your brother’s name – we have no real clue as to yours.
I am sorry we haven’t really bought you much. We are now poor – due to your brother, and it makes sense for us to re-use everything. But it doesn’t mean we value you any less. We are just a bit more sensible now.
I am sorry I have mostly ignored you. I have been so preoccupied with your “terrible two” year old brother I have honestly just not had time to think about you.
Please understand – It’s not as though I loved your brother more than you – I just loved pregnancy more than I do now.
And I guess I have been preoccupied with your brother, with the past, with the negatives – when I should have been focusing more on the present – on the future – and of how bloody lucky we are. I also didn’t realise you’re already here – already part of the family – and I should give you more respect, not wait till your due date.
I promise, bump the 2nd, that I will take much better care of you for the remaining months, I’m going to take it easy, use my soft voice with your brother and eat lots of broccoli this weekend – and when you get here, hopefully I can really make it up to you.
Lots of love
Mummy the 1st x