They say you can’t prepare for childbirth but I think it’s more accurate to say you can’t prepare for postpartum.
I’m day 10 postpartum now and finally feeling almost on the track to recovery albeit still limping and crying over nothing.
As I had a tear and required stitches I’ve been on constant pain killers and finding it hard to sit down properly or stand up for long periods of time. Add that with a newborn baby who doesn’t have a sleeping schedule yet, crazy emotional hormones, learning how to deal with breast feeding, swollen boobs and constant nappy changing, that pretty much sums up my last week and a half.
I don’t think enough emphasis is placed on post childbirth. It’s one thing going to birthing classes and doing Hypnobirthing etc in preparation for labour but then you’re out on your own, thrown into the deep end at the most vulnerable time in you and your newborn babies life.
I wasn’t prepared for the bleeding, the swollen stitches, the emotional roller coaster, the exhaustion, learning the ins and outs of breast feeding and then everything that comes with minding your new bundle of joy.
The only thing that really gets you through this is the love you have for your new baby. ❤️
These are some tips I would give myself two weeks ago.
1. Stock up on epsom salts. I have found salt baths have been really healing for my swelling and stitches and also just to bring down the swelling all over my body after the epidural and pain killers etc. Also it’s a great time to relax and have some TLC. So make time for yourself, give your baby to your partner, friend or relation for a few mins everyday and soak.
2. Stock up on incontinence pads! You’ll not want to trek to the shop and you’ll go through them very quickly especially the first week. (Oh and pain killers)!
3. Don’t leave the house. Its not worth it. Take time to heal.
4. Say no to visitors sometimes. I know it’s hard as everyone wants to meet your new bundle of joy but it’s tiring for mum. Best tell the visitors prior that they can have hour long slots or else just say you need to go to bed after a while. They’ll understand.
5. Enjoy the healing process. I know it’s hard to say when you’re in pain and so is your newborn. You’re both adjusting to each other. Your baby has gone through a traumatic experience too, from being completely sheltered in the womb to adjusting to this new big world. It takes time for both of you but it’s also an incredible process getting to know your little one. I can’t wait till I’m feeling 100 percent so I can really enjoy him.
6. Accept help. They say it takes a village to raise a child and this is pretty accurate. I’ve been lucky to have very hands on grannies and grandads and siblings that have been dropping over groceries etc and my fiancé Rob has been a fantastic nappy changer. All help welcomed. 🙏
7. Hydrate! You cant get enough water. It’s been great for healing and you’ll find if you decide to breastfeed you’ll be extremely dehydrated.
I hope some of these tips may help in some way. Take time to heal, enjoy getting to know your new baby, watch lots of Netflix and cry if you need to. ❤️