Postpartum comes with many changes, responsibilities, unknowns and unexpected situations. The reality of postpartum can be scary for many, or at least it was for me. So many things that are normal in postpartum and not normal outside of it. So yes, it was scary to experience some pain points after my delivery. This is why I was encouraged to share the points with you, so you know that it is okay to feel this when you just experienced birth.
Here are 8 common pain points that we experience in postpartum to make you aware. Not to scare you away but for you to acknowledge that these pain points are normal to experience and it is a matter of time for them to settle in.
1. Processing your birth experience and reality with a newborn
Birth is different for every mama, but it is true for all of them. You cannot escape from it. Reality didn’t strike for me until I got home with my newborn. At the hospital I felt like I had help and I was safe, but once I got home, I felt like my life was falling apart. There I was with my newborn, the most precious and wonderful outcome of my life, yet I was trying thrive and do everything at once but failed to do it right or failed to do it at all. So much to process and so many responsibilities to attend. I felt like I had the whole world on my shoulders and it was up to me to survive.
2. Sleep deprivation
You will have sleepless nights and it might take months for you to get back into a schedule but just know that you are doing an amazing job. Remember you are caring for your baby and that makes the sleepless nights worth it. I was sleep deprived for the first 9 months of my baby’s arrival. It wasn’t until I hired a sleep coach that I was able to rest as well as my baby.
3. Body image
No one tells us we need to love our body again, yet we do. Postpartum brings many changes and one of them is our body. We might experience stretch marks, spider veins, cellulite and other features and it’s vital for us to recognize these new changes our body has and accept them. Learning to love our postpartum body is definitely not an easy task but it is possible.
4. Loss of your identity (and hair loss)
At the beginning you feel lost; unlike your usual yourself. You have become a slave for your baby, and you have lost yourself. You lose yourself in the diapers, burp cloths, baby clothes, crib sheets, keeping up with pee and poop and it feels like you will not find yourself again. There’s so much that doesn’t belong to you and at the same time all of it does. So many responsibilities that you did not have ever, have suddenly become your new life. Not to mention the hair loss by 3 months that starts falling as you brush or wash it. Yes it’s normal, but probably unexpected- just like every other little thing.
Your marriage changes at the beginning. You can’t offer the same time to you partner and neither can he because of exhaustion, work, sleepless nights, never ending duties, and any other new responsibilities that come along with a newborn. Yes, it’s normal but at the same time it’s important to know that little by little you will eventually have your life again with your spouse. Yes, it will be different, but it can be wonderful if you want to make it that way. With its chaos of course, but still wonderful.
Your relationship with any other member of your family will be different too because you are now a parent. Being a new parent means that you might have some differences with your parents or in-laws on how you raise your children but know that you can still have a great relationship with any member of your family as long as you set boundaries.
6. Hormonal Imbalances
Whether you had a C-section or a vaginal delivery your body is adapting and it’s changing every day. It’s readjusting and sending signals to all of your body parts so they can all return to their original function. Remember they readjusted to be able to nurture and carry a child in the womb, so their work was not easy either. It’s important to acknowledge them and know that there might be some mood swings here are there, but they can hopefully disappear once they get back into place.
Most of us go through the anxiety. The anxiety that comes with being a new mom and taking on new responsibilities. It’s important to notice this anxiety so that we can work with it to treat it. When I say treat it, I mean working with it. With meditations, eating balanced foods, staying calm in moments of despair and just knowing that everything will be okay. Here is where I always say it’s important to get help and support if you need it. You do not need to go through this alone. Make sure you are asking yourself “How am I feeling?” “What can I do to help myself feel better?” And whatever that answer is, find how you can use it to make you feel less anxious.
Forget about the routines you had pre-baby(ies)- for now. You will be all over the place. Organization will be thrown out the window for the first few weeks if not months and then you will slowly start making routines that best suit you and your family. It’s hard at the beginning, especially if you are a routine person but it’s important that we don’t try to make those routines happen until we are a little bit more settled into motherhood.
I named this articles 8 common pain points because they hit right on sensitive spots that can create an explosion. If this does happen, you can know where it is all coming from and know that things will get back to a new normal soon enough. You just have to give it some time.
Sending you so much love whenever you’re in need.