As promised in my Newborn Must Haves post, I created a list of postpartum must haves, what to expect, and my experience.
As a first time mommy in 2015, I was so impatient, and so excited to give birth! I couldn’t stop thinking about it and couldn’t wait for my little jelly bean to make her debut into the world. I was so excited that I didn’t even think about the after math of delivering.
I thought I would just heal in a few weeks (yeah, no big deal right), then I will be back to my normal self again, get back into my gym routine again, and back to my normal life again in no time. But boy was I WRONG! Took me about 7 – 8 months to feel like my normal self, took me that long to workout again, and took that long to mentally and physically feel like I have everything under control again.
Below is a list of items that will benefit you tremendously during postpartum recovery after giving birth:
- Disposable mesh panties: Truth is, you will be bleeding A LOT after giving birth. The hospital most likely will be nice enough to give you a few mesh panties to take home. But if not, have a few on hand at home, at least for 1-2 weeks for the heavier days, so you don’t ruin any of your nice panties at home.
- Menstrual pads: The hospital may give you a few pads to take home as well, but they will be ginormous! Like from your belly button to your butt crack lol. Yeah super big ones! But bleeding will slow down so have a variety of pads available at home, from super heavy to panty liners. I bled for about 5 weeks!
- Puppy Pads: This item is kind of a funny one to me because when I went to bed, I was scared to bleed through my bed linens, so I thought, “PUPPY PADS!” I had some in my bathroom already and they helped a lot. But the funny part was I noticed other moms did the same thing! It is better to be safe than sorry, I slept on puppy pads for the first few days.
- Perineal Bottle: Or Perri bottle. My nurse gave me a perri bottle to take home after giving birth, and she stated to fill it with warm water + a tiny bit of baby wash, and after every time you use the bathroom, squirt the water to flush your self and dab with toilet paper but DO NOT WIPE!!!! Especially if you’ve got stitches, only dab the toilet paper! I suffered 2nd degree tear so this was helpful to keep that area clean down there.
- Stool softeners: Using the bathroom after giving birth is not going to be fun, it’s rather going to be hell. My Dr recommended I start taking these stool softeners before I gave birth, but I never did. I was all “anti medication blah blah blah” during pregnancy, but I wish I took them. Going #2 is going to make you strain and you don’t want to put any more strain on your bottom especially after just having a baby! This brings me to my next item!
- Hemorrhoid medicated pads: I remember having the most awful painful hemorrhoids after giving birth. So bad, that I was in tears everyday! During labor, I pushed for about one hour and put so much strain on my body that I was just all messed up down there. If your one of the lucky ones struggling with hemorrhoids, put these medicated pads on your menstrual pads or use them to wipe your bum. These pads give a cool minty like feel to calm those huge angry hemorrhoids.
- Dermoplast: A MUST have! Use this to take any discomfort away. This is a pain relieving spray for pain, itch, and cuts. And if you’ve had stitches, this is a must! Your hospital may give you one to have, but have one in your home just in case. This stuff is amazing!
- Ibuprofen: Your Dr will most likely prescribe you with a stronger dose of Ibuprofen than available in stores. Take it for pain relief! This also helped with the pain of breastfeeding for the first time.
- Comfy robe + Slippers: After birth, I was a complete hot mess of a mom. You’ll probably still be wearing maternity clothes as well. But to make myself feel a bit better, I had a cute and comfy robe to wear. It makes all the difference when your home all day catering to a newborn!
- Postpartum belly band: This is optional, I didn’t use one after my first pregnancy, but I plan on doing so this time. Especially since I will be getting surgery right after I give birth (I’ll talk more about what kind of surgery after it’s been performed). Your organs will take time to shrink back into place so this will help.
- Get help if you need it: Try not to be super mom and feel like you have everything under control. It’s ok to slow down and accept help! You just had a baby! I was so stressed out and emotional that a home cooked meal by a neighbor made all the difference, it really does! There is support out there, don’t deny the help. It’s ok to ask for help too. You think labor and delivery is tough, wait till after you give birth!
Have a basket of these items in your bathroom or on your toilet for convenience.
My Postpartum experience:
Your hormones are all out of wack trying to get back to your normal self after giving birth, and if your breastfeeding too that can affect it as well. I got a second degree tear and had to get stitches. I ended up in the ER with Mastitis at 2 weeks PP because I tried to get back to my normal life too quickly, not getting the rest I needed. I even got a horrible reaction (probably from the medication from getting induced) after 4 weeks of giving birth. My whole body broke out into hives, huge itchy hives the size of pancakes! It lasted about a few weeks, and I could barely carry my newborn, it was painful. I honestly thought they would never go away, I thought my life was over lol. At 6 months PP my beautiful long hair was falling out by the chunks, I had to cut it super short, I was devastated. I was a emotional mess, I cried a lot! I cried everyday in the shower. I was sleep deprived, tired, and exhausted. When my friends and family asked me how I was doing, I just cried! I was super happy to be a mommy but my emotions were a huge mess. Sure on social media I was on top of the world, a happy first time mommy, but behind closed doors, I was struggling with PP recovery. It is hard!
What I am trying to get at here is, don’t ignore the idea of prepping for postpartum recovery! It is something you have to prep for…because the recovery is painful, lengthy, and very unpredictable. Take care of your health.
Something I will tell myself after having my second baby in March of 2017, “Slow down, take your time, seek help if you need it, you just had a baby!”
Thanks for reading! Hope this has helped you! xoxo