I'm ready now!

Before Charles we always planned a 4 year age gap. When he arrived though, we changed our minds, well, my husband did...much to my surprise.
I was prescribed the mini pill although I never took it, my doctor said mentioned about breastfeeding being a form of contraception although I know some people have still fallen pregnant whilst breastfeeding (before their cycle returned)
We both [my husband not my doctor] decided that we would just risk it,
After 9 months my cycles returned so we knew we definitely COULD get pregnant now. And at this point decided that yes, we were trying for a baby. Although if it happened, it happened, if it didn't, it didn't. We weren't going to get ourselves worked up over it.

So on the 7th of November, after a day out at a zoo and feeling confused over whether or not my period was late we picked up a cheapy test from Morrisons. As soon as we got in I headed upstairs, pee'd on that stick and instantly 2 lines came up.
I ran downstairs to find Jonathan and Charles having a cuddle. I looked at Charles and said "you're going to be a big brother"  Of course at almost 17 months he didn't know what I was saying to him but I felt better that I had acknowledged that he was as much part of this big news as my husband.
My husband was so excited, as was I until I then burst into tears and a huge feeling of guilt hit me. I was still breastfeeding Charles at the time and didn't feel ready to stop, and I knew he wasn't ready either.
I felt like we were saying that he wasn't fulfilling enough etc etc.
At the same time the feelings of happiness were still around, but  couldn't shake these feelings of guilt.
Within no matter of time the pregnancy was affecting the breastfeeding experience. My nipples were so sore that it was almost like the first week of Charles' life when he suffered from tongue tie. I also knew that my body was not making enough milk.

In December I became really ill with flu, so bad that we sent Charles off for the day with my mum because I just didn't have the energy to entertain him, this is the first time we've ever done that in 18 months!
It was this weekend that he took his final feed from me. He stopped by himself.
I was so proud of him for deciding to stop and not making me wean him off as we had planned, as this would of broken my heart. But still at the same time I felt guilty that we were made to stop.
Now though, looking back, we were both ready for it and it was completely the right time. At just over 18 months I felt and still feel so proud to have been able to breastfeed him.

Over the next few weeks I still felt the feeling of guilt, I couldn't shake it off.  At the same time I was so excited and busying myself thinking of how I would cope being pregnant and entertaining a toddler, and then entertaining a newborn and toddler!
Parents were excited, it was different this time than with Charles as we both have strained relationships with our dads now sadly.

This time though I have the added bonus of two fantastic friends who weren't in my life when I was pregnant with Charles. The reaction I recieved from both of these more than made up for the slight lack of reaction/excitement missing from the dads. Don't get me wrong, they are excited.....apparently, but not around as much as they were previously.
Our 12 week scan came and went (at 13+6) but was amazing.
Although up until then I was convinced that we would see nothing, that there was no baby. 100% convinced.
But seeing this little person on the screen was such a relief!!
The due date was brought forward by a week which we were delighted about.I was already so bloated and hardly any of my clothes fit me!
Then came the 20 week scan...its a boy.

Getting to the nitty gritty of it all, and the bits I need to get off my chest. Is the feeling of guilt that has stayed with me through the majority of this. Charles has appeared to understand that there is a baby in my tummy. He knows what a baby is. He's made this obvious. And with it being a boy I know how lovely it will be that they can play together, and hopefully be best mates.

Not only have I had this feeling of guilt, but also felt so protective over the being inside of me. Although I have the two friends who constantly want to know how things are going, constantly remind me how excited they are etc, I feel as though family (other than my mum) aren't as excited before.
My husband hasn't wanted to feel the baby kick and move as much. With Charles we had "baby time" every Sunday and most nights where he would talk to the bump, read stories, play music, and this time that has been non-existant, despite my encouragement.
So I feel as though I'm the only one putting in the effort to make this child feel the love he needs.
Its exhausting me.

The lack of needing to buy things has also been hard. Its made me feel as though the baby has less importance, which is silly because its not about that at all. Its that we don't need as much!
Although now things have started moving and we now have a swing for him, breastfeeding pillow, clothes, a bouncer all bought for us from other people.

Then came our holiday last week, and since being back everything has clicked. Everything is ok. My feelings of guilt have all but disappeared. In the next month/just over a month I'll be properly preparing all his clothes, washing them and placing them into the brand new wooden drawers and wardrobes we'll have, ready for his arrival.
Just being away with Charles made me realise there was something missing. Not for us, not something he wasn't fulfilling, but something we weren't fulfilling for him. He needed a playmate. He needed a brother.
I watched him at the mini disco every night. He is such a kind, considerate and friendly little boy. Confident despite the fact he doesn't go to nursery and spend much time with other children.
He loves helping me in every way he can, so I just know he is going to be great when the new baby is here.

I'm not expecting it to be easy.
But now I know that it won't be as hard as I originally thought.
I have nothing to feel guilty about.
A huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders and I feel great.
Really great.
And really excited.
I'm ready!!

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