Marla Sokoloff's Blog: Learning to Love Two
In her latest blog, the actress wonders how a second child will fit in the family - and shares an inspiring poem.
Celebrity blogger Marla Sokoloff is going to be a mama again!
Since audiences first got to know her at age 12 as Gia on Full House, Sokoloff has had many memorable TV roles — Jody on Party of Five, Lucy on The Practice, Claire on Desperate Housewives — as well as turns on the big screen in Whatever It Takes, Dude, Where’s My Car? and Sugar & Spice.
Sokoloff, 33, most recently played Dani on ABC Family’s The Fosters.
She wed her husband, music composer Alec Puro, in November 2009 and the couple — plus pup Coco Puro — make their home in Los Angeles.
Sokoloff is expecting their second child in April, a sibling for 2½-year-old daughter Elliotte Anne.
Courtesy Marla Sokoloff
Please excuse my absence from writing this blog … I’ve been a wee bit under the weather. Not from the flu or the common cold. Nope. I had a good old-fashioned case of morning sickness!
Actually, evening sickness to be exact, that seemed to rear its ugly head around 5 p.m. every single night. By the time my sweet husband came home with whatever food I was dreaming about earlier in the day, I simply couldn’t even look at it, better yet eat it.
The first trimester seemed endless and I’m happy to report that I’m back to my old self again.
If you read my previous pregnancy blog, you may remember that I didn’t have one single second of nausea. For a minute there I wondered if I was even really pregnant! Truth be told, I even took a few extra pregnancy tests in between doctors appointments just to confirm. I wasn’t crazy AT ALL!
Quite the contrary this time around. (Except for the crazy part — that’s here to stay.) This pregnancy has been extremely different and on top of the sickness, every second seemed to be spent fighting off the debilitating exhaustion that comes with the first trimester. Let’s just say that little Elliotte got her Dora the Explorer fix in those first three months!
My sweet family is expanding and we are all very excited about it! Elliotte is telling everyone that comes within an inch of her that she’s going to be a “big sister” and asks me every single day, “When is my baby coming?”
She tells me she is going to teach the baby how to crawl and talk and, more importantly, cry. From my very blurry memory — newborns do not need a lesson on crying, they seem to have that part down!
I’m hoping that this abundance of excitement sticks around once the baby comes. In the meantime, my husband and me are doing our best to prepare Ellie for her major life change. We discuss the upcoming addition, but not ad nauseam (excuse the pregnancy pun!) and generally wait for her to bring it up as to not overwhelm her.
Even though Elliotte is clearly jazzed about having a sibling, I can’t help but have a heavy heart about how it may make her feel once the baby comes.
For the past 2½ years plus, my little girl has been my everything and when I look at that face, I’m positively blown away by her. She’s a constant source of laughter and happiness and I can’t help but question — am I about to crumble her entire universe?
I know that sounds crazy, but I guess it’s just another part of the ever-present mommy guilt that lives at the pit of my (growing very quickly!!) stomach. I’m sure all of you second/third/fourth time moms know what I’m talking about.
Elliotte is used to my husband and I giving her our full attention and now she will have to share said attention with someone who is really going to be taking a lot of it in the beginning. I know the reality of her asking me to play with her will have to wait until the baby is fed, changed and comfortable and fun little outings like our impromptu trips to Disneyland may need to be put on hold until we are all settled into our new lives.
Courtesy Marla Sokoloff
I know in my heart of hearts the greatest gift is a sibling. I consider my big brother Jared one of my best friends, and although we had our fair share of brawls as youngsters, I couldn’t imagine my life without him.
He and I are constantly there for each other and we have a bond that truly can never be broken. I can only dream of the same connection for my kids, but before their friendship blossoms, (no pressure kiddos!) I know we will have some growing pains to get through.
Don’t even get me started on how Coco Puro will feel about this new addition!
Since becoming pregnant again, I’ve asked my own mother if she felt this same guilt and if she was able to love me as much as she loved my brother once I arrived. She always just looks at me with a smile and a simple, “You will love them both the same, I promise. You just do.”
Hard to imagine that my heart will grow even more in the coming months.
I want to share a poem that a mommy friend of mine sent to me. She read this often while pregnant with her second child.
It took me about 15 times to get through it because I could barely see through my tears, but once I was able to finish, I realized it was exactly what I needed to hear.
There is so much beauty and excitement that’s about to come my way, and I’m truly feeling way more blessed and lucky than I could have ever dreamed of.
If any of you have any advice on the subject I would love to hear from you. You don’t have to be a parent — older siblings, it would be great to hear from you as well about how you felt when your little brother or sister arrived.
Leave a comment below (I read them all, even the not-so-nice ones) or send me a tweet @marlasok.
Please grab a tissue and enjoy this poem … wish I could give the author credit but the author is unknown.
Courtesy Marla Sokoloff
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
Courtesy Marla Sokoloff
— Marla Sokoloff
More from Marla’s PEOPLE.com blog series:
- Marla Sokoloff’s Blog: Mastering the Art of Letting Go
- Marla Sokoloff’s Blog: Dear My Formerly Judgmental Self
- Marla Sokoloff’s Blog: Searching for the Mommy Guilt Handbook