I always knew I’d struggle to adjust to life with a newborn – it was a phase that (contrary to what others pushed on me) I knew I wasn’t going to enjoy that much. Don’t get me wrong – I was infinitely happy about how my life was about to change but that whole fourth trimester thing just didn’t appeal. A human so tiny that I was constantly worried I’d drop or pick up the wrong way and snap in half?! I was so protective of my little bear that I was even scared of myself. How many times can you poke a baby in a 24 hour period to make sure they’re still alive?! Turns out – A LOT. So, off the back of this small paragraph intro that probably makes no sense, here goes the list of ‘What they don’t tell you about postpartum life’ – all of this is channelled from my own experiences and EVERYONE’S fourth trimester is entirely different I’m sure:
- Regardless of how you delivered, you will bleed from your hooha and SOMEWHERE will hurt. Begging my Mum to buy me a kids rubber ring to sit on 2 days PP was definitely not my finest hour. I remember lying in the hospital with my catheter and my spinal wearing off thinking ‘hey! this isn’t that bad’ – MAN! I was so wrong. The journey home was horrendous, my Mum tried to meticulously avoid all bumps in the road but even with her extreme care, by the time I got to my front door I genuinely thought my vagina had fallen out. I was permanently in a state of anxiety that I was going to get an infection and constantly attempting to remain as clean as I possibly could. Alongside, the worry that I had a vagina that resembled scar face and asking Andy to check it approx. 17 times a day. (Sorry love!)
- In my case, I was happy to formula feed. I knew I wouldn’t have much time off before going back to work and didn’t want to mess with my tiny humans mind by letting him adjust to breastfeeding and then implementing a bottle within a few weeks. I thought naively, that my supply wouldn’t be the best anyway as I had read articles about bustier ladies having trouble with their supply. I (again) was so wrong. I had bazoombas like Pamela Anderson and everytime I bent down they poured milk. They were painful, engorged, I could barely wear a bra never mind breast pads! Rex wouldn’t settle on me easily as he was entirely pissed off that I wouldn’t let him drink from my chest. (Sorry buddy!)
- Night sweats. I don’t even think I have to explain for all you Mamas out there. I would wake up in the night to feed my new little human and I would be absolutely DRENCHED in sweat – I’d have to grab a towel and dry myself off before even attempting to do anything because the minute I got out of my warm bed I’d be absolutely freezing – it was basically as if I had just emerged from a swimming pool. This continued for at least 6 weeks and I was genuinely begging for it to end. I’d be freezing in bed drenched in sweat and I couldn’t keep up with it as hard as I tried. Apparently it’s the pregnancy hormones being drained out of you – then how do you explain my next point…
- Crying. Emotional wreck. I’ve had jokes made many times by my friends that I am the ice queen – heart of stone and “none of us have ever seen you cry” – well sweet jesus that took a dive when I had Rex. Anything, everything – made me so emotional. Especially if it was concerning my tiny tot.
- This last one is happening to me right now and I’m genuinely in awe. I have thick curly hair and THANK GOODNESS FOR THAT because it’s falling out, in clumps, constantly. I can run my hand through my hair and have a huge handful of hair – washing my hair has now turned into a game of ‘can you unblock the plug hole fast enough for the water to drain enough so you don’t drown’ – tad dramatic but y’know, it happens.
I am more than sure a few more will crop up as time goes on but for now, I will leave you with those 5 delightful facts about my postpartum life. OH! And a picture of Rex for good measure of course!