I wish I can openly talk about those awkward experiences that come with pregnancy and childbirth. But I was the first among my close friends to have kids, so I had no one to share my embarrassing stories with.
But, it's time I share these experiences with you pregnant mamas because it would have been nice to have a heads up about.
1. I wasn't prepared for my husband to feel weird having sex with his pregnant wife
If you're one of the lucky ones having the best sex and intense big O, I'm so jealous of you! For some of us in this situation (myself in both pregnancies), it’s like torture.
In my first pregnancy, I made it clear to my husband that there was no way the baby could be hurt but he still felt weird about it. This made me feel rejected, unattractive and got me questioning if this would be our life after kids. I was an emotional mess. Thank goodness it was temporary. In my second pregnancy, I was more prepared knowing that it's a phase. Still not ideal, but at least the cuddles and affection helped.
2. No one ever tells you to prepare yourself
Postpartum moms need self-healing and recovery time. Don't overlook yourself. Have your nipple cream, belly wrap, herbal tea and other postpartum must haves ready before the big day.
3. Pelvic pain sucks
At 37 weeks, I started experiencing pressure and pain on my left side pelvic (inner groin area) when I was walking or standing on 1 leg. I was told it got to do with the weight and position of the baby and the hormone relaxin as my body prepared for labour.
They say the baby is the cure. Indeed, the pain disappeared after the birth but it came back again at 1 week postpartum. I was wearing SRC c-section recovery shorts (my postpartum must-have), but it didn't help much with the pain. It finally went away after about a month, but those limping days suck!
4. On day 2 post c-section, you're told to start walking and you need to fart before you leave the hospital
It hurt so bad. Bum shuffling inch-by-inch, it takes forever to be finally off the bed and standing on your 2 feet. Once in the bathroom, your midwife helps you undress, wipe you with a wet towel, sit you down on the toilet and wait. Wait till you can pee something out, along with the bloody stuff out of your vagina before wiping you down. Gross, I know. But shame is no longer in your dictionary.
5. Uterus massage post birth
The worst massage ever. During the hospital stay, the midwife would press on my stomach and gave me injections every day to prevent blood clots forming in the uterus. Some days I had midwives who treated me gently understanding that I had a baby and recently cut open, but not so lucky on other days. It’s been a hit and miss with the midwives, but we can leave that to a separate discussion.
6. A mommy diaper
Mesh underpants, maxi pads, bed pads to deal with the post-birth bleeding. Not glamorous but practical to deal with your horrible mess.
7. Panic attack
You might freak out at the last minute. I had a panic attack on the operating table. It was a combination of the spinal anaesthetic after-effects, the cold air and the fact that I DID NOT expect to feel pulling and tugging sensation after the anaesthesia kicked in. I thought I was supposed to feel numb?! My advice to you: get your support person next to you in the operating theatre if you can.
And life goes on after. When times get hard, think back to your birth story. Remind yourself that you’ve done this incredibly hard thing. It's made you stronger and more resilient to navigate through the next challenge.
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