You’ve Got This, Mama!
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Ahh, postpartum. It’s messy, it’s crazy, and wild and emotional and beautiful, all rolled into one. It’s sleepless nights and forgetting to shower. It’s napping when you can and navigating this whole new world with this new little person, who has suddenly become your world. It’s taking care of yourself and being KIND to your body.
I am 6 weeks into this postpartum journey (for the third time!) already. 6 weeks of newborn haze, of sleepless nights, endless snuggles and so much JOY. I am doing my best at soaking it all in and not worrying about “bouncing back” or working out or being on any sort of schedule. I must say, it has been pure bliss. I know how fleeting it is. As hard as it is in the moment, it’s also filled with so much sweetness and pure joy, and I’m allowing myself to completely lean into that joy and just “BE.”
I wanted to share my own experience, tips and tricks. I wanted to get real with you guys about some of the not-so-pretty parts; the necessary realness.
Here we go…
- Bleeding. Is completely normal. Your uterus is working towards getting back to normal and shedding its lining. Prepare with liners or disposable undies. Listen to your body. If you’re doing too much, your body will tell you. You will bleed more. Drink some water, and snuggle with your babe.
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- Pooping. There, I said it. The first one is terrifying. You’re on pain meds – so you should be taking a stool softener too. On time, every day. Oh, and you’ll hear me say this a lot but drink water, drink some more water, and then drink even more water.
- Sweating. Specifically, night sweats. You may wake up drenched in sweat. Don’t be alarmed. Your hormones are rebalancing. They may last for a couple weeks. Dress appropriately last night and don’t be surprised if you have to change your clothes in the middle of the night.
- Stitches. Your PP essentials kit will help with the healing.
- Hemorrhoids. Common and normal. Everything in the PP kit can aid in your recovery: witch hazel, sitz baths and tuck’s pads work wonders.
- It doesn’t come easy, but it’s worth it.
- Your nipples will become dry, crack, and even bleed. Use a good nipple cream (apply after every feed), nipple shields, and a barrier between your shirt/bra and your nipple.
- Cramping during nursing is a thing.
- Lean into your lactation consultant. Devan remembered things I didn’t catch on to at the hospital and really helped me with proper latching. My hospital even offered follow-up visits which I took advantage of.
- Remember, a fed baby is a happy baby! And a happy baby is a happy Mom. There’s enough things to worry about being a Mom and feeding your baby should not be one of them. Do not feel guilt around formula feeding – I have formula fed both of my children. Rid yourself of the Mom shame! There are great formula options out there.
- Prepare to still look about 6 months pregnant. Give yourself some grace!! This is normal, the new normal. There is no going back to how it used to be. You
PP Depression & Anxiety
- Both. Are. Very. Real. Things.
- You need to speak up and be an advocate for yourself here.
- Draw attention to your feelings and emotions – they matter. Consult your doctor.
- There are so many factors that can play a role in both of these conditions. I’m here to tell you it’s okay to ask for your help and to remove the shame and guilt. Do not suffer silently. You can always reach out to me via DM or email, I want you to know you’re not alone.
Another reality: your relationship has just entered uncharted territory. It will ebb and flow. You will be on different pages. You will need to seek to understand each other and communicate, communicate, communicate. What are your expectations of one another? Do you need additional support? As hard as these conversations can be, the outcome is always easier than avoiding the conversation and garnering resentment.
So above all else — be kind to yourself and your body. Vaginal birth, C-section, medicated, un-medicated, long, short, single, multiples, however your baby(ies) came into this world, they are a damn miracle, and you are INCREDIBLE! You are strong, you are beautiful and you should never think anything otherwise.
- Me! Please feel free to reach out if any of this spoke to you, or you’re looking for additional support. We all need each other. You can find me on Instagram at @morgan.a.kline
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