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Enough love.

Fat Mum Slim /

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“Do you you ever wonder…” someone asked just the other week, “if you’ll have enough love for two children?”

I’ve thought of this before. It’s a question I was asked when I was a nanny, by a tearful pregnant mum not sure she’d have enough love to stretch for her toddler and her baby due in the world. At just 21 I told her with such certainty, “Your love isn’t limited, you get more love and you give more love. It will all be OK.”

I imagine your heart expands, making room for another little person to steal some space. It’s as simple and as complicated as that. But what do I know? I’m not there yet. I’m here, with one little person in my heart… and another little one edging it’s way in.

What I do know is though, that in a matter of months I will be a mama of two. For five years now I’ve been a mama of one. She’s consumed my thoughts, my heart, my being. My love isn’t limited, but my time is. How do you find time to fit two little people in? To see those special moments? To keep space in your memory for all those cute little things they do and say?

She came to me last night, with a piece of paper crumpled in her hand, proudly saying, “I made this for you.” {She likes to draw me lots of things, including this}. Upon it was a whole heap of made-up letters and words, in a long line. Nothing I could recognise, but obviously it meant something to her. I took it from her small hands, and held it my own. “This is amazing,” I gasped, “Tell me what it says.”

“It says: I love you mum. You are my beautiful mama, Chantelle. From Lacey.”

My heart near imploded. She’ll often look me in the eyes, hold my face so that I’m really paying attention, and tell me, “You’re my beautiful mama.”

Five years it’s just been us. She came first. She’s the one that made me a mama. And I don’t wonder whether I’ll have enough love for another, but I do wonder how our lives will change. I want to hold onto the magic of being a mama to one for as long as possible. I want to remember just how wonderful it is/was… and hope that the uncharted waters ahead offer loveliness and moments much the same.

At the 30 week mark, when I was pregnant with Lacey, I went through the same tearful moments. I wanted to stop the world for a moment, far too aware that my world was about to be changed forever, and just capture time as it was. Hubby and I, in love… just the two of us. I wanted to remember what it felt like, what our lives were like, and never change a thing.

And here I am again, wanting to stop the world again. I want to capture my life right now, me and them, a family of three, before it all changes once again.

I knew when I was handed that wee little baby, that my life had changed so dramatically. I cried, because it had and it was amazing. I was scared though. And I am right now too.

Mamas who’ve sailed these waters before, what am I in for? And I don’t mean the sleepless nights, the nappies and the crying, I get that, I mean the heart stuff? How does it all work? We’ll all be OK, won’t we?

  • Not gonna lie ~ it’s an adjustment. But the most important thing I was told was to spend one-on-one time with the oldest. And it was hard, but it made things a lot easier. Now, I can’t imagine life without both of my little ones together all the time! πŸ™‚

  • Frau SΓΌd

    Dear Chantelle,
    this is such a wonderful post and I do understand your thoughts and feelings so very well. I am a mum of four and I have to be honest that it is impossible to have enough time for all the little moments, but I have learnt that that is not the only thing that counts. There IS enough time for being a good mum for even four, for seeing special moments, noticing this enormous love in little things and being so full of love for each of your kids, that the rest won’t matter. And don’t forget: there will be brother(s) and sister(s) that will also take part and having time for holding magic moments, etc.
    It will be wonderful, be sure of that.

  • TheotherElla

    You’re going to have enough love for two! You would have enough love for hundred children – the heart is a little bit amazing like that! And the other stuff will work itself out pretty quickly too. And don’t forget that while you’ll be amazed at how much love you still have available to give to your new baby, you’ll also get to witness the blossoming of another very precious relationship between Lacey and her sibling. The whole thing will be a big love-fest! You wait and see…

  • Your heart grows and grows. I promise you, it really does. I remember lying on the bed with my two year old little girl, crying my eyes out, convinced I couldn’t love the baby that was due that week as much, and convinced that she was going to lose out. My four children are 13, 11, 9 and 6 now. They fight like cats and dogs. They also adore each other, and I adore them all, each different one. In so many different ways. I promise you, it’ll be good.

  • Cathi

    No worries! Your mama soul is full of love. Your heart will grow to include any new babies that come along. You’ll be surprised at the amount of love you have and how far it can grow. I’m so excited for you Chantelle!!

  • tmurrell

    One of the other commentors said it was a big adjustment. She’s right. Trying to figure out how to fit in this new little puzzle piece. But for me at least, when I saw my 2nd child for the first time my heart opened up and she fit right there beside my son. It’s a completely different type of love and probably will be regardless of how alike/different they are. But it’s all of the love you can fathom poured out onto each child. Cherish the memories you are making now, but don’t be nervous. The ones that are coming will be amazing too.

    • charmaine

      YES!!! Exactly and how bittersweet it is now that they are 19 and 17 xxx

  • Donna Hilton

    The love of a Mother is like no other love you ever have for anyone. You know this already and you think your heart is so full of ‘Lacey’ love you can’t possibly find more. Well as a Mum of three and Nanna of 5 I’m here to tell you it will come. In a giant tsunami of overwhelming feeling, it will come. It seems our hearts are the most malleable and easily stretched part of us where our children are concerned. It’s as pure and unconditional as the love those little ones have for us and it comes in a never ending supply. It can’t be explained, it’s MAGIC!

  • ChroniclesofNardia

    This made me tear up big time. I had only said to a close girlfriend of mine a few weeks ago that I didn’t know if the love I feel for my 10month old would ever be replicated again with another. We’re about to go back for another round of IVF for our second baby and I find myself constantly looking at my daughter wondering how it is possible that I can feel this way again about another bub. But I trust that I can, and I will, because its all around us and people experience it every day… And knowing that has lessened the fear and allowed me to enjoy what I have with my daughter now… Live in the moment and trust that when the time comes, you have everything you need inside of you ready to spring into action when it’s required! Be sure to tell us how that goes… I’d love for you to revisit this post in 12 months time!

  • Liz R

    The truth is that the LOVE NEVER RUNS OUT! I remind myself of that constantly with two teenage daughters (‘cos sometimes it feels like the well has run dry)! Seriously, the LOVE just gets stronger! Awesome isn’t it!

  • Fiona Russell

    I am a mummy of a 16mth old and a 3 mth old. Sometimes I feel bad that my oldest missed out on special time with me but then I watch how their faces light up when they play together and my heart melts. I hear my oldest say his little brothers name and try to make him giggle and my love explodes for them. I see my baby watching his older brother like their is nobody else in the room, almost idolizing him and I am so excited for the future when they can both move and play together. I am so proud of my babies and I couldn’t imagine having it any other way. Having to means having twice the special moments, twice the happiness, twice the laughs, and of course TWICE THE LOVE!!

  • toushka

    There is enough love. Your heart just gets bigger.
    The hardest part for me, and the most surprising, was the grief I felt when my relationship with my son changed. He was no longer an only child. It was a huge adjustment for us both. Not trying to scare you or anything.
    This was healed with seeing the new sibling bond, and that just gets more beautiful every day. It’s so amazing. Wait till Lacey is writing notes and drawing pictures for the baby. Your heart will burst. And then you see how the baby looks at her… oh it’s so amazing.

    • I feel like I’m already grieving a little bit, but also so aware that I want to soak up every moment that we have now… because we’ll never get that back.

      Also, thanks for making me very teary. xx

  • Becky Lievens

    I remember those feelings so clearly when I was pregnant with my 2nd. I was driving back from an ultrasound and had to pull over because I started crying so hard. How could I ever take away from my first – he was my entire life? Nothing would be the same. Intellectually, I knew otherwise, but right then & there the hormones took over and I mourned the loss of the time, the sharing of that special bond. Of course, that is not how it turned out; I love them both infinitely – even 25 years later! You, too, will find how wonderful that change is – how that the love between the two of them will add to your joy. As soon as you see that new baby, you will be so in love. Just like many said above, love just multiplies.

  • There is never enough time but something beautiful is that older siblings share the load too. They will love their baby & be loved in return. They will have a constant playmate & companion. You will have to share your baby with Lacey just as much as she’ll have to share you. It will make your heart sing xxx

  • Jennifer Chau

    I’ve been there and pretty recently too. Before daughter #2 made her way to join us in February, I was always having doubts about having enough love for both my girls. I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to love the baby because I love my eldest so much. But now that the baby is here, I find myself loving both my kids so much more than I can imagine. Like everyone says, your love will multiply and boy does it! And when you see your kids interacting with each other, your heart will swell up so much that you might want to cry from all that joy. It’s an incredible feeling πŸ™‚

  • Kay

    I think we all have that feeling when making the jump from 1 to 2! I remember going to hospital and leaving my 3yr old with family and feeling so guilty! That all disappeared when I saw them meet for the first time, that will always be a special memory. The “having enough love” thing all works out, don’t worry.
    Finding time for everyone and everything, if you’re a mum, is always a struggle, but it’s a case of working out new strategies and accepting help when it’s offered (something most of us find hard to do). I found any “me” time went out the window, but came back once I let people help! as for time with the kids, my eldest wanted to be around the new baby all the time and help, it was so sweet. I do try to have one-on-one time every so often with my eldest and she loves that, but usually can’t wait to get back to her sister!

  • I was a Mumma to one for 19 years so I was worried about this when we talked about having another. But now I know my heart just grows and grows with my babies.

  • Erin Drummond

    I’m not yet a mama, but my bestfriend has a 2 and a half year old and another one due in September. Before she got pregnant again, she was always worried she would be “cheating” on the first child by having a second.

  • Josephine

    Don’t fret too much. I feel that as you’re growing each child, you’re also growing an extra heart just for them.

    I have two boys, born 2 years and 3 months apart. I was less concerned about ‘having enough love’ for the second, I was far more worried about how my first would react to a new family member. I have to admit, it was a rough first couple of months – my eldest was generally sad, and developed constipation (I suspect as a stress response – it was just awful). I tried to make sure I was giving plenty of cuddles to my eldest and I spent lots of time at the park, pushing him on the swing (his favourite)!

    My youngest is 10 months old now and that time is a bit of a blur (thank goodness, I had some less than awesome mama moments that I’d rather forget). The two boys are very attached to each other now – time really does sort it out. You WILL all be OK, but don’t feel like you’re alone if the transition isn’t as smooth as you hoped!

  • New City Mum

    You know that overwhelming, all consuming feeling you had
    when they placed number one in your arms? The joy, the relief, the fear, the
    responsibility, the amazement and the complete life altering unconditional, soul
    consuming love? You get ALL that again πŸ™‚ Within a very short space of time
    you will wonder how on earth you all got on without your fourth member, because
    they seem so essential to the whole family dynamic. Just like the love you have
    for your partner deepens and evolves when he becomes a father, the same happens
    when your little girl becomes a big sister. It all just works. Just this time you know what you’re doing πŸ˜‰

    • I am just nodding along so much to your comment. That feeling when they’re placed in your arms, and then that last sentence… here’s hoping. πŸ™‚

  • I don’t know how it works but it just does. And it’s more than doubled. You know those special moments now between you and Lacey? And those special moments you get to witness between Lacey and her dad? Now you get to add in a 2nd child, you’ll witness moments between Lacey and her sibling that will either make your heart want to explode with love or leave you as a melted puddle of moosh on the floor.

    I can’t promise it will be all sunshine and roses, but I can promise that those moments between the 2 of them will make it ALL worth it.

  • Christie

    Another thing to remember that might cut through the guilt is that you are giving your first born the greatest gift you can – a sibling – someone that will always be there to love them, play with them and support them for the rest of their lives. Pretty awesome present to give your children I think!

  • rslaws

    You will have enough love for both. In my experience the love is very different though. My love for my first is almost feral, my love for my second is a pleasant cruise.

  • Sonia G

    It’s OK to be scared, I was too when I found out I was pregnant of my second daughter but I guess that for me I basicaly just trained myself that I nedded to have time for my oldest as well as my new baby, because they both need me and I am their mom. And I just had to find time for both, because I am responsible for them. And the love will grow, I’m sure that when you see your new baby you will fall in love with him/her instantly and you won’t even think about having enough love for both because you will πŸ™‚

  • Little Pudding, Larissa

    Hi Chantelle, I wondered the same thing before my second baby boy came into our lives 8 weeks ago, and I too wanted to stop time and savour my moments with my first born. All I can say is that it is so true, your heart simply expands and you fall in love all over again. The best thing you’re in for is the beautiful moments between your two children. Our baby is smiling now and his face just lights up when my toddler talks to him. It’s gorgeous. Your camera will get even more of a workout!
    Larissa x

  • helen

    Did you see this?
    I think it is such a beautiful picture. Lainey must have so much love for her little brother.
    I used to worry about enough love, enough time etc, but now I know I can make those things work. Enough money, however, is a different storey.
    And before anyone is up in arms about money not being important: the nice people at the bank require mortgage payments so we can continue to live in our house.

    I am certain that Lacey will appreciate you growing her a sibling as it will be a gift for life.

  • Gosh Chantelle, those feelings bring back memories! I felt like that when I was pregnant with my second, and again with my third, and from my experience – you will be ok. It’s hard to imagine having enough love because there’s so much we want to give to each special person in our lives, but you will have more than enough love for hubby and Lacey and baby and yourself, truly.

    If you have the tissues handy, I remember crying as I read a poem that I’ll paste below while waiting for the big jump from one to two…

    You’ll all be ok, promise.
    Natalie x


    As I walk along holding your 2-year-old hand, basking in the glow of our
    magical relationship. Suddenly I feel a kick from within, as if to
    remind me that our time alone is limited. And I wonder: How could I ever
    love another child as I love you?

    Then she is born, and I watch you. I watch the pain you feel at having
    to share me as you’ve never shared me before. I hear you telling me in
    your own way, “Please love only me” And I hear myself telling you in
    mine,”I can’t,” knowing, in fact, that I never can again.

    You cry. I cry with you. I almost see our new baby as an intruder on the
    precious relationship we once shared. A relationship we can never quite
    have again.

    But then, barely noticing, I find myself attached to that new being, and
    feeling almost guilty. I’m afraid to let you see me enjoying her — as
    though I am betraying you.

    But then I notice your resentment change, first to curiosity, then to protectiveness, finally to genuine affection.

    More days pass, and we are settling into a new routine. The memory of
    days with just the two of us is fading fast. But something else is
    replacing those wonderful times we shared, just we two.

    There are new times — only now, we are three. I watch the love between
    you grow, the way you look at each other, touch each other. I watch how
    she adores you — as I have for so long. I see how excited you are by
    each of her new accomplishments.

    And I begin to realize that I haven’t taken something from you, I’ve
    given something to you. I notice that I am no longer afraid to share my
    love openly with both of you. I find that my love for each of you is as
    different as you are, but equally strong.

    And my question is finally answered, to my amazement. Yes, I can love another child as much as I love you — only differently.

    And although I realize that you may have to share my time, I now know
    you’ll never share my love. There’s enough of that for both of you —
    you each have your own supply.

    I love you — both. And I thank you both for blessing my life.

    ~Author Unknown~

  • mary_j_j

    I worried about the same thing – and I knew I would be fine. I remember reading somewhere about a whole new well of love that you draw from, and that is exactly right. I just love both my children so much.

  • Momsasaurus

    It’s normal to worry about this. We all do. I did too. It’s good to know ahead of time that you’re relationship with your first WILL change. You will still love her just as much, but you’ll love another too, and your attention and time will be split. It’s important to remember that it’s ok to let yourself grieve the loss of the relationship you had, as long as you also remember to celebrate the new relationships you will have with both children (and the relationship they will have with each other). Don’t worry too much about the “having enough time” thing. It will all work out. As my doctor says, “Babies have a way of making room for themselves.” This applies to both your children. It will all work out.

  • It will be fine -and all will be OK. Your heart can expand and fill up with more love than you ever realised.
    I have five boys, and could easily have gone back for more{if I was able to have a girl I would be there tomorrow!!} Love is like that, it expands and has room to grown.
    The only thing that I could ever say is “Be Kind To Yourself” – take breaks. Sleep when baby is sleeping. Get someone to do the housework because they grow far too fast and spending time with them is way better than any jobs that need doing.
    And have the time to enjoy the moments – there is going to be lots of busy days ahead, but sit down for at least ONE hot cuppa a day, and do something that makes you feel happy.

  • Natalie Hunter

    I dwelled over this for pretty much my whole pregnancy. I felt immense guilt and would cry over what I was doing to my first born.. The answer is of course you will have enough love for both, but as you pointed out sometimes the time thing is the real issue. 18 months down the road I can say that adding another one to your nest is not as hard as you think. I think because Lacey is 5 she will feel she has had some real time with you already and probably is at the age where a little sibling is the best doll she has ever played with. If you can get 1 hour a week to spend one on one with Lacey I think it will be all good.

  • charmaine

    You will do awesome Chantelle, trust us πŸ™‚

    May i just suggest and i am sure you have already thought of this, but when Lacey comes to visit you in the hospital for the first time, have a special gift to give her from the baby. We did this for our now 19 year old and his sister, i still remember the look on his gorgeous face when we said that Zoe had something for him.

    Maybe in today’s enlightened age (lol) you could find her a book written for a big sister from the baby to thank her for being their sibling??

  • Amy Zempilas

    I’m in EXACTLY the same boat as you, 30 weeks pregnant with our second child and all too aware that these next 10 or so weeks are very precious – after that it won’t just be the three of us anymore. Just as I was reading your post I was looking up some special things for Ava and I to do together, just the two of us – before the baby arrives. As I’m writing this, I can feel such a huge range of emotions bubbling away…. excitement and fear. Very soon, life will never be the same again – but I couldn’t imagine life without my precious little girl and I’m sure it will be exactly the same when bubba number two arrives. Amy x

  • Debbie Huxstep

    Having had 3 children, my youngest is 21…yes you do have enough love for them. I will say however that you always have some special connection with your first, not that you love their siblings any less or them any more it’s just different. Second time around is easier, you are less stressed about “doing the right thing” and things just seem to fall into place ( well they did for me with my second…she was such a good baby we went to go out one day and only realised she wasn’t in the capsule when we were reversing out the drive!!!). When my second and third children were born I made sure that when their siblings came to visit for the first time there was present in the bassinet for them from the baby..they were so excited to think that the baby thought of them!!! Go easy on yourself Chantelle, you will have enough love for Lacey and the new you said your heart just expands to fit xxxxx

  • Kelly Innes

    Do you know I never gave this a second thought when pregnant, though that may have been the months spent in a wheelchair just wishing the nine months away. My mum had three, her mum five and there was always more than enough love to go around- the kind of love that makes all three of you shriek simultaneously “Getoffmum” or roll your eyeballs. It’s just there. What I worries about more was mu husband’s love- would there be enough left over for me after the dreadful pregnancy and the exhausting first few weeks. Would there be enough for me after the two girls. I still wonder. BUt my girls? They grow from strength to strength, smothered in kisses and never once questioning how much they are loved. Do not worry. It will be there.