*WARNING* EXPLICIT CONTENT. DETAILED DESCRIPTIONS. *WARNING*
I’m overwhelmed with the support and praise I’ve received from you all. I’m glad to be able to shed some light on my experience of postpartum recovery and have so many of you relate. I hope it helps you to be more comfortable about your postpartum experience.
You can read all the professional books about it prior to giving birth, to give you an idea of what to expect, but each and every one of our recoveries will not be the same as others. So I’m happy to know that my anecdotal diary is giving some peace of mind to other mums who were worried about some of their postpartum recovery experiences. Someone, somewhere is relating to you like how you relate to me, so let’s keep this train going and encourage each other to be more open about the real side of things. It’s natural and normal.
Day 8: Today is a special day. It’s my dads birthday. The first birthday he’s had with 3 grandkids! We surprised him at work with his favourite sushi and cake. I’m now back to driving (minimal where possible) and today the hubby and I had to drive 2 cars as we have family over and we can’t fit in 1 car. As I made my journey to pick up the sushi and cake, being 5 minutes away, the hubby called me and said he’d be leaving home in the next 10 minutes as he picked up his sister and was dropping off his mum, which meant I’d be alone with 2 kids by myself for at least 30 minutes. My blood was boiling. How on earth was I going to cope with 2 kids walking down a busy high street with only the sleeping cot buggy for M and trying to hold Es hand while she walks… IF she walks. No way I could carry her and push the buggy. 🤦🏽♀️
I admit I almost lost my temper and wanted to scream at the hubby down the phone to “hurry up!” And nearly burst into tears. But I kept my composure as best I could as I knew it was the hormones being insane and not me. I knew there was nothing I could do to get him there faster to meet me and of course there was no need to get upset about having my sister in law picked up and my mother in law dropped off. I was more nervous about being alone with both children by myself for the first time. I was out numbered and I can admit I have zero confidence to have them by myself out and about at this moment.
When I parked up, luckily it was lovely weather and I was able to find a parking space in the shade on a quiet residential road, so I put M in his sleeping cot to get him out of his car seat. E was quite happy to sit and play in the front seat with me while we waited for back up from daddy and auntie. I left my door open with M right next to me in his buggy.
Thankfully M slept the entire time we waited for the hubby to arrive and eventually I had calmed down and by the time he did arrive, I was back to being excited for my dads birthday surprise. *Ugh these hormones*
Day 9: Although my nipples are no longer sore from breastfeeding, they are getting quite engorged. M has now settled into a nice 3 hour sleep routine, but I feel like he could actually sleep longer than 3 hours at a time. Under the advisement of my midwife, I should feed him every 3 hours, so if he’s asleep for his feed, I need to wake him and offer him some milk. I have been doing this, but when you see a sleeping baby, you don’t really want to wake them. He does tend to have a bit of milk before dosing back off to sleep again.
During the evening both breasts became even more engorged! They were rock hard and very uncomfortable. I hand expressed some milk out when I had a warm shower, just to give me some comfort. They’re still adjusting to M’s demands so hopefully it won’t be too long until they produce milk at the right times for him and the engorgement is under control. If it doesn’t get any better in the next day or 2, I’ll consider bringing out my electric pump to start expressing milk so I’m more comfortable. I can always freeze the breast milk too, although I don’t plan to bottle feed him while I’m on maternity leave, sometimes it’s good to have spare milk incase I need to be away for something. (Click here for info on expressing breast milk and safely storing it.)
Day 10: Not only are we having a grey and rainy day today in London, my mood is matching the weather outside. 😕 My private area has started to throb and ache again as if it was the first day M was born. A lot more lochia fluid is gushing out with every breastfeed too which is a bummer as it got less and less over the last few days, making me think I was nearly rid of wearing maternity pads LOL. I’ve decided it’s going to be a bed day for me today. Thankfully M sleeps most of the day, with milk feeds in between and E has been chilled and will be out trampolining with daddy later today to give me a bit of a rest. I tried all day not to move much or exhaust myself, but in the end I couldn’t cope and was back on the ibuprofen in the evening.
Day 11: I woke up today still feeling a little tired and needing some more uninterrupted sleep. But, once I was awake, I couldn’t doze back to sleep. E and M were both still asleep so it would’ve been perfect if I could get myself back to sleep. 🤷🏽♀️ For the rest of the day, I lazed about on the sofa, played with E when M was asleep and tried to keep my activity level down.
My appetite was normal which was good in helping me gain some energy for the day but I felt so drained still. The hubby was out since early morning running some errands and sorting out a few bits so I was home with the kiddos. I was lucky to have my mother in law at home too to help me throughout the day. ❤
Thankfully E still takes a 2 hour mid afternoon nap!! I put M down for his nap and E soon followed. Great timing for me, cause we were all able to nap together. #winning
Day 12: The sun is shining and we all had an early night last night. E and M are still sleeping which gives me a chance to have a nice hot bath. A much needed soak after feeling so fatigued yesterday. We haven’t been out the house in a few days due to the rain, so today we’ll be visiting my parents at their house for the afternoon. I’m feeling a bit more refreshed today after having an early night and thankfully no nightmares from E and M kept to his 3 hour sleep stretches.
My engorged breasts have finally adjusted and are no longer uncomfortable. M seems to have 3 hour stretches at night between feeds, but during the day, as he’s awake for longer it ranges from 1 hour – 3 hour stretches.
Day 13: We’ve had a few busy days the last week, trying to get a few things sorted before the hubby goes back to work, so today we were all a bit tired again. Me, E and M all had a bit of a lazy morning after visiting the midwife for our discharge appointment. We were up at 8am, then back for a long nap by 11ish after having a slightly late night last night. The long morning nap was just what we needed to recharge.
Tomorrow my boy will be 2 weeks old. It’s flown by so fast and with how I’ve been recovering, it’s crazy to say it’s only been 2 weeks since giving birth. I’ve been out and about and back to mummy mode pretty much from day 2. Not quite sure if this will take its toll further down the line, but for right now… I’m feeling great. Really enjoying our time together as a family of 4. Sure some moments are a little frustrating/stressful/tiring, but you get over it when you have the priceless moments, like when E held her brother for the first time this morning with sheer excitement!! If only time could slow down so I can enjoy my maternity leave that little more.
Day 14: Today our boy is officially 2 weeks old! When I look at him I still can’t believe he’s finally here. I can’t express how blessed I feel when I look at both my children. E has been amazing since M’s birth and she’s grown up so much full of personality and just sooooo cute. M has been such a good baby boy, cool and chilled. The emotions are running high in me today and I can feel myself almost wanting to cry with joy every time I think about how wonderful my family makes me feel. I’m sure it’s the hormones that are emphasising these emotions of happiness to the point of me wanting to cry with joy, but it’s also probably a bit of me in general being a cry baby as well LOL. 🤷🏽♀️
Still have a little fatigue today, but still getting on with enjoying our last day with daddy while he’s on paternity leave.
The haemorrhoids are getting better but still there and still annoying after every number 2. 😕 If anyone has any remedies they’d like to share on how to get rid of them faster, do let me know. I’m quite hesitant to cut out meat as I do enjoy my meat but if it carries on disappearing this slow, I might have to consider going vegetarian for a while. I’ve upped my fibre and drink plenty of water but that hasn’t seemed to speed up the process. I know it’s only been 2 weeks, but damit they’re annoying!
Thank you for taking an interest in my health and postpartum recovery. The support and comments from every has been immense and it makes me happy to know that I’m not the only one who goes through these ups and downs. This time round, I have more ups than downs as the experience I had with E was such a learning curve that when M was born, I was more prepared and confident with a newborn.
I’d love to hear your stories in the comments below. How was your postpartum recovery?