imageYou’ve been waiting for this moment for nine months! You are so excited to hold and kiss your sweet little cherub. You envision the picture perfect moment of snuggling with your little one and being engulfed by the serenity of the little miracle you just created. Then reality sets in and you realize that all your mommy friends forgot to tell you that postpartum life is all but glamorous.

1) You never thought you’d wear mesh panties—and love it
Thats right. Mesh panties. After you deliver your body will begin the process of pushing out all the excess blood and tissue your body needed to nourish your little one during pregnancy. The flow is HEAVY at first and blood clots may also be present. Those sexy mesh panties work perfectly with a large maxi pad since you will not be able to use a tampon. Since your belly will still be swollen and maybe sore, the elasticity of the mesh panties is not only comfortable but they are disposable! My nurse told me that clots up to the size of credit card are normal. This was a bit shocking when she told me this to say this least. To top it all off, you may also experience abdominal cramping as your uterus begins it journey from the size of whatever fruit What to Expect told you down to about the size of your fist. I especially noticed sharp cramping when I was breastfeeding due to those good ol’ hormones telling your uterus to shape up.

2) Am I breastfeeding a vampire?
I’m not sure I would have made it through without Lanolin and soothie pads. Lanolin is a natural protectant that you can apply to your poor painful cracked nipples to help with healing after your little one has veraciously attacked your boobs like a hyena. I would highly recommend looking over a breastfeeding book before your little one comes and during as needed. I read that painful nursing is usually due to a poor latch. You can detach your little one from your nipple by slipping a finger in his mouth and gently slide finger out to the corner of their mouth to break his seal. Those soothie pads are wonderful with a capital W. However they are pricey and are only good for 72 hours. Also, my lab Bailey really liked to eat those expensive buggers. Don’t worry we found them later in the backyard. Don’t worry…no animals were harmed during the breastfeeding process.
3) Coochie Coolers!
Amen to Tucks pads or coochie coolers! I delivered my little one via C-section however I pushed for several hours up until the point we found that it was fruitless. Tuck’s pads are given to you by the hospital and are basically maxi pads that have cooling beads in them. They are the next best thing to sticking your hind end into a freezer. I have seen pins on Pinterest of homemade coolers but have not heard many reviews.

4) Nap time nightmares
I never babysat. I really never had to care for young children until Mason! I was under the impression that babies just go to sleep when they are tired. Well…some babies might do that but my little stink had other plans. Some babies need to be put down for naps! Mason continues to this day to fight naps however he is a much happier baby when he gets those naps in. Late to bed does not necessarily mean late to rise. An overly tired baby is a TERROR. We found that we would watch him like a hawk and look for tired signs such as yawns, rubbing eyes, moving legs and arms with less coordination/spastic, and he likes to rub his head on our chest.

5) Hungry Hungry Hippo
When I was breastfeeding, I could not eat enough! Don’t be surprised if you have an increased appetite when you are breastfeeding. I have read that you burn about 20 calories per ounce of breast milk you express! If your little one eats 3 oz every 2-3 hours you have already burned at least 720 calories by just being an awesome mommy!

6) Home cooked Delivered meals are a godsend
We were so thankful for the outpouring of love and gifts from all of our friends and family showed us especially home cooked delivered meals. I am pretty sure that my husband would have starved if we didn’t have some of those delicious meals. Those first couple of weeks I barely had enough energy to shower. I literally was in a nursing bra and robe for weeks. Cooking dinner those first couple of weeks was the last thing on my mind. I think next go round I am going to get my pregnant butt in gear and make frozen meals ahead of time so I don’t have to worry about my husband starving to death.

7) Why do I still look pregnant
After delivery you lose around 10-15 pounds right off the bat! Hell yea! But wait a darn minute what is this sad squishy pouch where my stomach used to be?! *sigh* Yes, you will sadly still look pregnant after birth of your little one. Don’t worry those first 6 weeks you wont really feel like working out anyways and if you do…I hate you.

8) That first BM is scary
Yes i’m talking poop here. After hours of pushing you are not sure what the hell is going on down there. Just make sure that you are taking stool softeners as directed by physician especially if you are still taking prenatal vitamins. You’ll get through it just breathe. I think we have covered that topic. Check.

9) You wont get much sleep at the hospital
At our hospital all babies roomed in with the new parents. There was always an array of doctors, nurses, aides, housekeepers, lactation specialists, and even a photographer?! coming in and out all day and night. Every change of shift 7-3, 3-7, 7-11 expect someone to come in and check on you and baby. We were pleased with all the attention but definitely were ready to go home to some “relative” peace and quiet after discharge with our baby boy.

10) Life after baby
Getting out the door to just go to the grocery is a major event. When did the baby eat last? When was his last nap? Does he need to be changed first? Where’s the damn binkie? Have the dogs eaten today? Simple errands now require the planning of a four star general. Don’t forget to continue to date your spouse and find some time to have fun and relax. And always remember that bottles just aren’t for babies. Pour yourself a glass of wine and relax mom you deserve it…