I wrote this a couple of years ago, after our 3rd baby. Even though it’s a little bit old, I’m coming up on 2 weeks postpartum today, and…yep, it still rings true! The days might be different, and this time I was out and about sooner and feeling pretty good, but the feelings are similar and I’m hoping it relates to someone.:) Haha! Here’s to you Mama’s in the postpartum recovery party!
Let’s be honest, having a baby isn’t known to be the most glamorous thing in the universe, and let me be blunt: neither is the recovery. When you feel like something is leaking from every part of your body, and you are forced to be a functioning human being to take care of other kids all while being sleep-deprived and sore…here is a breakdown of those first couple of weeks. So, if you don’t like graphic and gross [and, believe me, I spared many, many details. Promise.] then DON’T.SCROLL.DOWN. Otherwise, read on, my brave friend. There is your disclaimer. None of this phases me anymore, it’s like once you have a baby all sense of dignity blows right out that hospital window. From the moment they check your cervix the first time, to the moment your legs are in those stirrups for the world to see, to the times they push on your stomach and check your pad to see how much you are bleeding and make sure everything looks normal…like I said. Dignity: bye bye! 🙂 [HOWEVER, I can’t think of anything cooler to loose your dignity to than pushing out a human being…[A HUMAN BEING!] from your body, so there are absolutely no complaints about that here. 🙂
Day one: Pain and BLISS. SO many endorphins and it doesn’t even phase you that you have to use a squirt bottle to clean after using the bathroom or that you have a frozen glove in your pants to keep the swelling down!
Day two: Pain and BLISS
Day three: Pain and BLISS. Boobs start swelling.
Day four: Crying because you miss being pregnant [no matter how miserable it was at times] and wondering when the next one is coming! Crying because your older kids look so big. Crying because you miss your nurses and doctor. Crying because you are overwhelmed. Crying because you’re happy. Crying because you’re tired. Crying when your husband says the goodnight prayer with the kids…Let’s just call this a cry day, shall we?
Day five: Afterpains [what they call the pains that happen after birth when your uterus is contracting down to normal size…and it feels like labor again…minus the baby coming out part] worsen and you realize you still haven’t *ahem* gone numero dos. [And that in and of itself is a scary thought. Have you ever heard of hemorrhoids!? They’re almost worse than childbirth. Exaggeration? Only slightly.] Have a short Cry Sesh for no reason. Boobs start leaking and are more painful and lumpy with milk than before. You quickly realize that you could feed a small village with all the milk that is somehow managing to fit inside of your sore, sore boobies before it regulates.
Day six: Afterpains make you curl over. Ouch. Shovel chocolate in your mouth like you’re on the craziest period of your life. Have a short Cry Sesh for no reason. Again. Cold flashes [more like full on body shivers like you’re standing in the snow in the middle of January] and hot flashes [more like you are running a marathon in the Sahara desert…in sweatpants.]
Day seven: Every muscle hurts. [You think: Could I really still be sore from labor!?!? Yes. The answer is yes.] Boobs hurt. But you decide maybe it’s time to get ready and go somewhere………..Nah.
Days 8-14: You’re not supposed to drive much or lift much, depending on your recovery…so the sentiment these days is…GET ME OUT OF THIS HOUSE OR I’M GOING TO GO CRAAAAAZY! 😉 Less sore. Starting to get the itch to actually be social and see what’s going on in the world outside of your house. Get a ride to Target with your awesome Sister-in-Law with all the kids on a maiden voyage sans husband. Get dressed up because you can [kind of] fit into some clothes that aren’t made for a giant belly! Decide to wear white pants because your sleep-deprived brain cells are malfunctioning. Get back to the car after shopping and realize that you just wore white pants a week and a half after having a baby. And it shows. [Yep, I’m sure you can guess the next part.] Sister-in-Law takes a picture of your rear end and sends it to your husband as you sit there laughing half because you are mortified that you just walked through Target with a stain on your bottom and half because it’s hilarious. [COMPLETELY hypothetical, of course! ;)] And then, just like that, two weeks has come and gone, and despite your fears that you might drown in children and will never get used to this whole Motherhood thing… the “new normal” starts to feel…well, normal. And you love these kids more than ever. And then as insane, completely baffling, and unnatural it may seem…you forget [the majority of] the pain, and you realize: You’d do it all over again.