What I didn’t Expect After Giving Birth

Yes, I’ll admit I’m one of those moms that tends to reminisce and get sappy each year my kids get another year older. This year, my daughter turned four and my son turns three…CUE THE WATERWORKS!!!

It has me looking back and thinking about how fast these years have (seemingly) gone by. I still remember being in the hospital with both of them, like it was yesterday (or three years ago…). I have to say too, there were A LOT of things I wasn’t prepared for when I walked into that delivery room. I read the Pinterest articles and I talked to mom friends, but I was still able to come up with a list after-the-fact of all the things I didn’t expect after giving birth.

Here’s my list of six things I didn’t know to expect:

1. A nutritionist coming into talk to you about your eating habits. After I gave birth to my daughter, a nutritionist came into my room with a clipboard and wanted to talk to me about my diet. I had attended a diet and nutrition class before giving birth, so I really wasn’t sure why she was here with questions. She asked me if I’ve ever struggled with an eating disorder and I’m like…do you see this Burger King my husband just picked up for me?? It was weird…and I’m still not sure what prompted her to question me. I didn’t have that same experience a year later when my son was born.

2. A lactation consultant grabbing your breast. This one I just have to laugh at! I knew to do skin-to-skin immediately after birth, and LOVED doing that for as long as I could. When my daughter started rooting around, I tried giving breastfeeding a try. She didn’t latch on right away, so my extremely (overly?) friendly lactation consultant walked over to me, grabbed my breast, and shoved it right in her little mouth. I get it, she wanted to make sure I was doing right – she was just VERY straightforward! And, when that didn’t work? She helped me express milk onto a spoon for my daughter to drink. TMI? Sorry, I thought we were getting close…

3. How long you will actually be wearing those mesh granny panties. I wasn’t necessarily complaining about this one, since you really don’t want to wear anything tight on your lower half for quite a while after having a baby. The mesh panties were juuuuuuust right, but I surprised myself by wearing them at home too! The hospital gave me some cold packs and numbing spray to take home along with the extra panties, and they were MUCH appreciated.

4. How difficult your first “movement” might be after delivery. My mom actually did warn me about this one when I left the hospital. She hinted that it might be good to drink some apple juice or eat something that would help soften things up a little bit, if you will. After having my daughter, I had stitches from a vaginal delivery to deal with, so I did NOT want to push those things into splitting. Just a word of advice: Take it slow. Try to keep from pushing if you can. And try not to panic!

5. The doctors will continue giving you prenatal vitamins, so bring your own if you have a kind you prefer. Maybe other moms figured this out with their first baby, but I….did not. I don’t swallow pills easily, so I preferred to take smaller supplements along with gummy prenatals. I did not bring those with me to the hospital, so when they told me to take theirs…I freaked out a little. Needless to say, I didn’t forget my gummies the second time around!

6. How hard it is for you to let visitors hold your baby. We had a lot of visitors after my daughter was born. We encouraged people to come to the hospital to see us…but I soon found myself very emotional at how long my baby was away from me. Everyone wanted to hold her, and that was understandable, but I wanted to hold her too! I had just met her, I needed some more time with her before I was ready to pass her around. After my son was born, we waited a few hours before inviting friends to visit with him. By that time, we encouraged them to come visit him in the hospital, since we figured that the hospital would be a less busy place to visit than at home (with a fourteen month old and new baby).

What were you not prepared for when you gave birth? Was there anything you forgot to pack in your hospital bag? Leave it in the comments!

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