Hello, I have compiled this article squeezing in details from my personal experience as well as from my friends and relatives. This is not a medical blog but just basis on knowledge gained.
1. Your stitches will hurt!
Whether you give a normal birth or a C-Section, getting stitched up will be painful. Especially in case of normal delivery after an episiotomy (the vaginal cut that the doctors make), it will be hell. In both cases, even simple things like sitting, getting up, going to the loo will be extremely painful. Don't worry, everyone goes through this pain so you will make it through too. After a week it will almost be negligible so hold on a bit and pray for strength.
2. Breastfeeding is a task.
The first time I breastfed my baby I thought milk will flow generously. No such luck! The first milk to come out is called colostrum. It is nothing like the milk you have seen. It is thick and sometimes sticky. Since it is quite thick, the doctor/nurse generally squeeze your breasts for it to flow out. And that act my ladies is unbearable! Your breasts are full and that's why it hurts. Again, just breathe. The doctor knows what she is doing and you need to be prepared for it. Also try massaging your breasts or give it a hot compress to reduce the pain the next you breastfeed. Within a few days the milk will flow and it wont pain as much.
3. Sore nipples- the ugly truth!
You know a few weeks later, I used to dread if my baby cried for milk. The soreness in the nipples was killing me. Most of my friends too faced this and it was a tumultuous experience! I did not know what to do or how to reduce it. There are a lot of creams in the market and it will be wise to use them under the guidance of your doctor. Although they do not really change things much but it does give you temporary relief. It does reduce sensitivity and is not harmful for your baby, but better to get your Doctor's prescription before you use them. Also applying ghee works, but it does stain your clothes so its not exactly practical. You need to keep your area clean. Before and after feeding clean the area with a soft wipe and you can moisten it with your own milk. This actually helps.
4. Dreadful stretchmarks.
I was so happy till the 8th month when I developed very little stretch marks. In the last month my baby decided to grow bigger (really happy about the fact that he was 4kgs at birth!), and I got a plethora of stretchmarks all across my tummy! For the fortunately unfortunate moms like me, who went through this , don't fret. It takes time and a lot of patience for it to lighten. Keep using moisturizers and tone your tummy. If you are rich, well you can consult cosmetologists to take them off. I was actually very embarrassed about them for a long time and kept away from wearing saris, lest they be seen. But something wonderful happened. My baby boy loves my tummy, he really does! He caresses it, sleeps on my tummy and even rubs it in his sleep. So apart from my hubby (who loves me with all my flaws), my little prince loved me too. It did not matter anymore and then it kind of boosted my confidence. So be in love with yourself, your body. Hell you just produced a miracle darling, it doesn't matter what others think. Be comfy in your own skin.
5. Post partum depression
My dear friends this is an ignored truth. Many of us suffer in silence. A few symptoms that one experiences:
- you feel like you are not made for mother hood
- you feel disconnected, you do not feel like bonding with your baby
- you feel overwhelmed, confused and scared. Not knowing if you are going to survive this.
- you compare yourself to other mothers and feel disappointed in yourself.
There may be other symptoms too. You can check out the link www.postpartumprogress.com
for further knowledge. Do note that if you feel any new mother is going through this please help her out. Give her support and love as she needs it a lot. If you are alone and need to take care of yourself remember that this is just a phase, This too shall pass.
Seek help, you are not alone. Confide in someone whom you trust and who won't mock you. Always remember you are a super human, you created a wonderful child and you are the reason love flourishes. Don't let anxiety get the best of you.
Enjoy your post pregnancy, once this phase is over your baby is going to rock your life and give you wonderful moments which will within time make you realize that all of the above things will cease to matter.
Do you have similar experiences? Please write in as I would love to hear from you.