Raw and real thoughts on my journey into motherhood. 3 days in.
I wrote this the day we returned from the hospital and it is exactly how I felt in that moment.. This post is a tiny bit graphic and probably not for everyone. Sorry 'bout that.
- After hours of what feels like useless, extreme pain the urge comes to "bear down and push" and you suddenly are working with your pain. I squatted and birthed my baby in a super primal state, I couldn't hear a word or see the world around me. It actually felt relieving, and I've personally never felt as empowered as I do now having experienced the act of birthing a baby.
- It takes a few days to process the trauma you've just experienced. I'm only now starting to forget the pain I endured in a real raw form. You really do question if you'll ever let yourself do this again. I'll never forget the only lucid thoughts I had during my entire labor was, "I'm never doing this again", "now I know why people schedule elective c-sections", "maybe c-sections aren't so scary". Literally the only things I remember thinking.
- You leave the hospital with one question; do they bring in CSI clean up crews to clean up your room after birth?
- Having stitches on your hoo-ha is just about as fun as you'd imagine. And second degree tears are exactly as they sound; you don't know what it means per se, but you know you want nothing to do with it.
- Peeing is no longer performed sitting, but rather standing, straddling the toilet in an athletic position with your butt in the air and your elbows on your knees.
- Frozen pads with witch hazel and aloe vera will save your life, especially before you've figured out the whole peeing standing up thing.
- Chapped nipples. MAN. Breastfeeding is hard work. The first few seconds of baby latching is like a thousand little daggers stabbing you and ripping your nipple out at the root.
- But my God when that baby is nursing and looks up at you exploring the new world you just brought them into... You forget the pain. At least for just a second.
- One day you could be reduced to tears because you think the lactation consultant's disposition was too aggressive for you. No, I'm not the "milk boss" and I don't want to be the "milk boss" now stop saying "milk boss".
- The next day you can feel your hormones surging through your veins. And it feels good? Weird but good. Joy suddenly radiates up through your body through each organ. It feels hot, and real, and despite the struggles you actually feel pretty damn good.
- Baby toes are actually the cutest thing in the world. There's no debate.
- It may sound silly but you still love your dog as much as you did before. Your heart doesn't replace that, it's just grows much much bigger to make room for something ridiculously special.
- When you breastfeed you can feel the hormones signaling to your uterus to contract back to normal. Your body is an amazing thing and we should never forget that you're not in nearly as much control as you think you are. Childbirth is your body's territory.
- You only remember the names of two or three of your nurses but you have so much love for each and every one of them. I think back to the snapshots of my birth experience and look around the room and see a dozen people there helping me, my baby, and my husband. I remember saying "I have the urge to push" and just like that they all came running in. They're there just for you, supporting you, and helping your baby into this world. It's super humbling. I have so much respect for them all.
- A lot of people say you lose all modesty once you've given birth. I actually wouldn't say it just like that. I think you just gain a hell of a lot of confidence. You may not think there's a whole lot of difference between the two, but there is.
- Baby, baby, baby. It takes a minute to process who you are and what you look like. You're mine but I've never seen you before. I don't know you but I've just named you. Is this real? But as the day turns into night, and the night into morning, I start to learn you and your every feature. And before I know it we're connected deeper than anything I've ever known. I'm all you know in this world, and that's the biggest responsibility I've ever felt. And I look down at your sweet sleeping face and I know that yes this is all worth it.
- Lastly, but one of the most important things is, you have never loved your husband more than you do when you see him take care of you and your baby. It's a visceral feeling from deep within your soul. Your heart wants to explode and there are no words to convey the feeling, but your life is forever changed.