Things I wish I would’ve known about labor, delivery, and the postpartum life

About Labor:

  1. For me, contractions felt like stomach cramps
  2. Contractions really aren’t as bad as I envisioned, especially in the beginning
  3. Bouncing on an exercise ball is extremely helpful (wish I would’ve brought it to the hospital)
  4. Eating during a contraction is extremely uncomfortable
  5. Resting as much as possible is important
  6. Contractions in a car stuck in traffic are not fun
  7. There are moments of self-doubt
  8. Screaming “Get this baby out of me!” just might happen a few times
  9. Saying, “I don’t want to do this anymore,” might also happen
  10. Warm showers really do help the body to relax

About delivery:

  1. It’s weird and strange to feel a baby come out of you
  2. There is a “ring of fire” but you quickly forget about it
  3. What they say about pushing like you’re pooping is totally true
  4. Wait for the strong contractions to push and let them build first, don’t push on the weak ones
  5. The moment when they put the baby on your chest is the most exciting and scariest moment
  6. Delivering the placenta was actually really easy

About postpartum life:

  1. You get little to no sleep in the hospital
  2. Breastfeeding hurts at first and nurses will “help” you
  3. All your dignity and sense of shame went out the window when you gave birth
  4. A nurse will use a peri bottle to rinse you off after you go to the bathroom
  5. You’re not supposed to “push” when you go poop
  6. You’re also not supposed to wipe when you go to the bathroom
  7. The first night home is one of the hardest, especially when you’re running on little sleep
  8. You may have fleeting thoughts that make you feel like a horrible person
  9. Postpartum hormones are like a million times worse than pregnancy hormones; there is soooo much crying
  10. Being the person responsible for a new life is incredibly overwhelming
  11. It’s okay to not be okay
  12. Having visitors is nice, but also exhausting
  13. Sleeping when the baby sleeps isn’t very easy, but really important
  14. Day 3 is a day like no other, especially if it’s the day your milk comes in, baby may nurse every hour all day long
  15. You do whatever you can to get sleep the first few days, even if that means sleeping in the recliner while holding the baby
  16. Everything you thought you knew and thought you would do no longer matter, you do whatever you gotta do to survive
  17. Hearing your baby cry makes you wanna cry too
  18. Relaxing while nursing is so important! Use a chair with arms and put your feet up
  19. Mom guilt starts early
  20. The baby determines the schedule and how the days and nights are going to go
  21. Everytime you think you have your baby figured out, they change on you
  22. Holding a precious newborn is worth every moment

5 thoughts on “Things I wish I would’ve known about labor, delivery, and the postpartum life”

  1. wonderful Jenn! You sharing is three-fold; helping those who are soon to be new moms; sharing honestly encourages new moms that they are not alone; reminds us ‘old’ moms of what it was like, because – hard as it is to believe – your memory fades…


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