When I was pregnant, which was for about 10 years (or so it felt) I was constantly reading up to prepare myself for the huge life change I was about to face. I had articles up on my phone and One Born playing on the TV, I had so many books and I asked my mam and any other mammies I knew a thousand questions in an attempt to mentally prepare myself.
I have ADHD, which either makes it very difficult for me to focus on anything at all or it makes me hyper focus and latch on to something, I latched on to learning about being a parent, what to expect and educating myself about what would happen when I eventually gave birth. I had a pretty rough pregnancy, I was off work for most of it because I was so sick (that’s all in the origin story) so I had plenty of time to cram all this information in, and what did it do for me?
Absolutely fuck all.
These are the 7 shades of S after giving birth
After having Oscar I was shaking like a dog shitting razor blades, maybe its evolutionary that you shake to rock the baby to sleep but its more likely that the shit tonne of adrenaline you produced while you expelled a human being from your body is still coursing through your veins leaving you feeling like the Duracell bunny.
You think you couldn’t possibly have any more fluids left in your body but wait…. there’s more! Between the heat in the postnatal ward and everything you sweat buckets.
Everything is swollen. Your bits, your boobs, your legs, your face and yes your heart from seeing your tiny human all swell and you sit there feeling like the elephant man.
It might not happen straight away but what goes up must come down, sometimes crashing down at serious speed causing damage to everything in the immediate vicinity. I felt fine until a couple of days after having Oscar, I just wanted to go home, I’d been in hospital almost a week and labour had been horrible for me and the thoughts of staying in a room with other women who were laughing and chatting with each other just filled me to the brim with anxiety. When I got home the smallest, most insignificant thing pushed me over the edge and I just broke down, I was bawling to my mam asking if things were always going to be this way and if I would feel that bad forever, thankfully I didn’t and after a couple of days with teary eyes I was back to myself.
Yes this one isn’t shocking, it goes without saying that wherever the baby made its great escape from is going to hurt like hell. There are stitches in places you didn’t know you had, swelling in places that you can’t even see, bleeding, leaking, throbbing, sharp pain that burns with the red-hot intensity of a thousand suns but… the pain isn’t just where you thought it would be. It hurts everywhere, yeah I didn’t plan for sitting in the same position for 16 hours and having my knees to my chest for 2 hours, my hips, back and legs were pretty sore for a good while after.
Breast pads, maternity pads, clothes, nappies, bed sheets literally everything feels clammy until that amazing post labour shower where you feel like you’ve washed away the sins of the world and every bit of grossness that had accumulated on your body, and then it starts again.
Yes ladies and gents, I’m not just talking about the black goo that you’ll be surprised to find in your precious baby’s nappy, I mean shit might just hit the fan…. if you can manage it!
What are some of the post labour things you weren’t expecting?