This is a semi-graphic account of what happens in the hours and days after birth. Not for the faint at heart and certainly not for anyone with a weak gag reflex. I will be swearing like a sailor, because to understand the full effect of things you really need a couple F-Bombs. These are the things I experienced and after talking to countless moms, I know I am not alone.
First of all, hands up if you a little shocked by the moments after giving birth and what happened in the immediate days after? Yeah, this girl right here. Birth, I was prepared for. I researched the heck out of every aspect of it and had a natural birth. The days after giving birth I wasn’t so prepared for.
You are in the throes of contractions and are about to push out your precious new baby. Eager to see what he looks like and scared at the same time, but PLEASE get him out! So you birth your beautiful baby, and notice “Hey, he doesn’t look like me.” or “Hmm, why is head cone shaped” or “Thank Fucking God it’s finally done!” You are probably thinking all of those things and loving your new baby to no end when all of a sudden you feel contractions, yes it’s starting all over again. This time you don’t have a beautiful end result to look forward to, you have some ugly placenta roughly the same size as your baby being pushed out of your cooter.
Ok, your baby and placenta are born, you are bonding with your new nugget and then all of a sudden he starts to breastfeed and “HOLY Fuck” it’s starting all over again. Yes, the moment your adorable little bun starts suckling those contractions start again. Yes, they serve a purpose, to contract your uterus back into place. But after the marathon that is birth, you don’t want to see those ugly fuckers for quite some time. As the contractions continue, you are physically exhausted. Your body just completed one of the most trying events of its life and the pain continues.
Baby falls asleep, you look at your husband and both cry about your beautiful baby and then all of a sudden you have to pee. So you try getting up, oh wait all your abdominal muscles have been maxed out and you need assistance getting out of bed. On the way to the bathroom you realize, Oh fuck I just pissed myself. I’m glad I’m wearing that hospital pad at this point.
A little while later you realize that not only you have no bladder control immediately after giving birth, it burns so bad! They give you a little squirt bottle to try to relieve some of that burning, hell no, get your man to spend $50 and install a mini-shower attachment on your toilet. The two times a day you will have time to pee your lady bits will be very thankful.
Nurses come in to check on us, make sure Atticus is eating and that I’m doing fine. Then I go to the bathroom to shower up and I notice a giant clot… like the size of a softball. Freak out, dance around in a panic until the nurse comes and be told, “that’s normal,” we just don’t want a lot of those happening.
Alright so you shower up, put on a little make-up and feel somewhat human and then Dun Dun Dun… a nurse asks if you have shit yet. Hell NO. She reminds you it’s important and to take your stool softeners.
(three days later you try to poo)
FUCKKKKKKK…. MOTHER FUCKKKKER! It’s like birthing shards of glass out of your ass. Of course this doesn’t go away right away, actually, I’d love to say it goes away entirely, but I have yet to have the joy of saying that.
In the days after birth you may experience sore nipples, engorgement, cracked nipples, etc. I was lucky not to have any of that other than sore nipples, but we used a shield.
You may also want to realize that chores will go out the window, a clean house to the wind and you and your beautiful baby will be bed bound for at least the first week. Enjoy those days, they really go by too fast. Park yourself on the couch or in bed with comfy pillows, your breastfeeding pillow, your iphone, a giant pitcher of water and some granola bars. If you are like me, you won’t eat in the days after giving birth. As much as losing weight feels good, your baby and body need those calories, so eat up.
I’m sure there are a 100 more things that suck in the minutes and days after giving birth, but your new baby really makes it all worth it. I would give birth again in a heartbeat, but hope next time our time after giving birth is a bit easier.
After 5 months I have finally realized why no tells you any of this… nope still haven’t figured it out.