3 Truths about Postpartum
Having a baby is seen as such a blessing and a wonderful thing, and it totally is.
But still there are so many things that are kept silent, truths that are not told that contribute to portraying an unrealistic concept of motherhood.
Today, 3 new mamas talk about their 3 different and unique experiences about the still very secretive POSTPARTUM. For those of us who would like to know some real life experiences.
So, the questions are… Did you have any expectations about postpartum? How has postpartum treated you? How did you feel? What was the hardest thing to overcome? Would you have preferred to know more about it before? What would your advice be for mamas to be?
Tamara: I honestly had no clue what to expect, I was told by my good friends that postpartum was so bad they didn’t even wish it to their worst enemy!!!… I didn’t believe them!! I thought delivery was the most difficult thing I would have to face.. So I prepared myself for it , the best that I could… And I was completely wrong!!! I totally underestimated postpartum and it came and completely ran me over.
It just gets you from everywhere!! You are physically exhausted after the huge effort, your hormones are all over the place, you are sleep deprived, overwhelmed and feeling really weird.
I like to call the first 2 and a half months of my baby… The Fog… Because that is exactly how they felt..I was very out of it as if I wasn’t present, and then caught up in deep internal struggle. Breastfeeding wasn’t easy for me and the fact that I couldn’t feed my baby as I had planned made me feel like a failure of a mother. So I spent those first months feeling like a failure, disconnected from my child and miserable for that.
The hardest to overcome has probably been the feeling of failure… I really feel like no matter what I do I can’t do anything right.. And I mean NOTHING.. Baby related, home related, work related…
I think there needs to be more and more info out there about how hard this is and how common it is to be.. All screwed up after your little one is born. At least it will eliminate the feelings of embarrassment and we would be more open and ask for help.
I didn’t… Everytime my doctor asked me if I was feeling depressed I said NO. Because I don’t feel sad, I love my baby and being a mother but I feel incompetent in every single aspect of life… That is not precisely healthy right?
It all starts by changing our approach to motherhood, we don’t have to be perfect and the world shouldn’t expect us to be perfect, take one day at a time… Let’s be ok with that and learn to ask for help.
Angela: During my pregnancy I had heard in general terms what to expect and how long the baby blues are supposed to last and what’s considered a normal situation and what is instead considered depression. It all seemed black and white then. “Nothing to worry about because it’ll be easy to recognize it” I told myself back when I was pregnant just because I did not take in consideration the physical rehab that your body has to go through after giving birth.
My advice to all those expectant mothers out there is to not underestimate THAT because it’s HUGE and it’s HARD.
I don’t want to scare anybody but the truth is that it SUCKS big time… Your vagina hurts and it will continue to hurt for about 4 weeks (unless you’re lucky like me and they stitch you up the wrong way and it’ll last longer) and it’ll hurt to sit on it to feed your child. Your boobs will hurt. Your nipples will hurt. Your belly area will feel so weird because EVERYTHING inside is repositioning itself. And all these things are JUST the physical aspects of the postpartum. This is what they don’t prepare you for. But THIS has a huge impact on your moral. Let’s face it!!! You feel like shit 24/7 but your child survival depends on you so you keep up. My best description for it would be that you just SURVIVE for the first few months and then you start feeling better just overnight and you feel like you can breath again. The sun will shine again and all will fall into place but it takes TIME!!! Just accept it, work with it and you will get through it (almost) scar free. The emotional aspect is another monster that we’ll touch on a separate post because of the amount of information that it requires.
Dharmali: I had heard of postpartum and was told it was going to be intense. I did not know what to expect even though I was told about it.
Similar to the fact as no two labor experiences can be the same, each individual will feel and react to postpartum differently too. I love my profession and I have worked very hard to get to where I am, one of the most difficult part of postpartum was the disconnect I felt with that aspect of my being. After labor everything you do or think is about the baby. You are responsible for nurturing and caring for the beautiful little being you have been gifted with. You as a person don’t exist. All you can think of is the well being of your child.
As a new mom you are entering a new stage of life and are trying to understand your baby, what he/she needs . When your baby cries, everyone around you looks at you for answers and what needs to be done so the baby stops being in discomfort. This was quit overwhelming for me. Sometimes people forget that this is new for the mom too. She is also learning and trying her best to understand her baby’s needs. The first few weeks were difficult as I felt I should know what’s going on with my child and what she needs. The fact that I was clueless made me feel I was not doing my job as a mom properly. With time I learned it’s ok to say ” I don’t know what is wrong with the baby. I will need a few minutes or some time to figure it out”.
I love my child and am very lucky to be blessed with such a beautiful happy baby. But after the first few weeks I realized I need an hour or so every day where I am not thinking about her. It’s difficult when your entire day revolves around the baby’s schedule, all the conversations you have with people are related to your child. I had to tell myself it’s ok if I don’t want to think about her for an hour or so. It does not mean I love her any less. I would like to try and have some form of balance. It will be hard to achieve it but it’s not impossible.
Postpartum can hit you in so many different ways. The best thing that worked for me is to take it one day at a time. As long as my baby is loved, healthy and happy I don’t have to prove anything to anyone. This helped me gain the perspective I so needed.
If you do feel overwhelmed and exhausted all the time and think there’s no way out, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE talk to someone. Talk to your OB. He or she will have the resources to help and refer you to the right person.
If you don’t want to talk about it in the open there are other options.
There are tons of chats where they give you the support and knowledge you need.
So please don’t ever feel you’re alone because YOU’RE NOT ALONE!!!
Please feel free to share your story or comments with us in the comment box at the end of the page.
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