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Six weeks postpartum is a big milestone, but it also comes with sometimes some new and unnerving experiences that I know I wasn’t ready for at all. When baby first arrives, six weeks feels so far away. Everything is new, exciting and exhausting. But, I promise, before you know it, you will be walking into your doctor’s office, or meeting with your midwife to get the all-clear for normal life.
The all-clear is the exciting part, but the reality after can be unnerving and surprising because you don’t always feel “all-clear.” My third postpartum experience has by far been the best one. I actually felt all-clear, had a great healing experience (not to mention super fast delivery), mostly because of all the nutrition and fitness lessons I learned. I put together a super unique, postpartum recovery program that goes over how to nourish your body postpartum for recovery. Your body needs nutrients. It is so important. I can’t stress the value of nutrition enough, and an amazing bi-product of good nutrition is an awesome milk supply!
Most of my unnerving experiences happened with my first baby, which then I was desensitized for my second and third. Here are 5 things that are totally unnerving you can be ready for.
The Doctor Says All-Clear, But Some Things Are Still Not All-Clear:
The doctor or your midwife, will check you to make sure you’ve healed in terms of any tearing or stitches. They check to make sure there aren’t any open wounds or infections, and that is basically it. I definitely wasn’t all clear after my first baby in terms of jumping back to the bedroom. I had developed scar tissue from tearing a bit, which was SUPER uncomfortable. I went to physical therapy after convincing my doctors things weren’t right. Don’t be surprised if you don’t feel all-clear down there, even if the doctor says you are. You may be healed on the outside, but it will take some time to get used to things being different. Give it more time. Don’t be afraid to see a physical therapist, and don’t feel pressure to FEEL NORMAL. Things are a new normal.
The Postpartum Period (not bleeding) is Scary:
This was the actual period that came after my 6-week check up, NOT the postpartum bleeding directly after birth. Because I was so freaked out about what happened to myself, I was scared to even put a tampon in. But I needed like 5 tampons in 15 minutes…or so it felt. There was a lot of blood, my back ached, and I just didn’t even want to leave the house. It wasn’t a normal period. Don’t be shocked if there is just a heavy flow that comes and goes. I would think it was lightening up, then it would return with a surprise. Nothing is normal about this, but things do get much better. Just survive the first one, then you may never even get another one if you are solely breastfeeding your baby with no pumping. For some, that’s a great form of birth control! (me!!). Also, don’t be surprised if you try to workout, and your tampon wants to fall out. Without doing a recovery program, it is totally normal and can be fixed!
Breastfeeding Hunger/ Eating ALL THE SUGAR!
I was very surprised at the amount of sugar I WANTED to consume while breastfeeding. I didn’t want to eat anything but sweet/carby food. This is not proper nutrition for breastfeeding, which can really affect milk supply and weight loss. Luckily this protein powder is a LIFE-SAVER. I found protein shakes to be amazing for helping me attack that sweet tooth, while also being able to have something sweet. Knowing all the essential nutrients, and milk-boosting herbs were in a simple protein shake really encouraged me, and helped me lose the baby weight quickly. So, don’t be surprised if you find yourself eating ice cream for breakfast because…well, breastfeeding cravings.
Your Bones Moved and It Feels Creepy:
I do a Pilates routine to help my core and pelvic floor heal. I go over this in the program too. Some of the moves, you can tell your bones haven’t completely regained strength because there’s pain. I could feel my pelvic bones, which was very interesting. I am not used to feeling my bones, or really thinking about them, but the pain and uncomfortable sensation with certain moves totally creeped me out. I waited to do some moves until my bones felt better, which just took more time. Sometimes things need months to heal, which is totally okay.
Your Boobs May Leak A Lot, at Awkward Times:
The most awkward time is obviously in the bedroom. I won’t go into too much detail on that one, but be prepared. Other times, you’ll be shopping, making dinner, working out…and that tingling feeling just comes and so does the milk. Be prepared with pads, extra shirts or milk catcher to save the extra milk. Don’t worry about dressing cute post-baby because most of the time, your outfit gets ruined some how. Which leads me into the next unnerving issues.
You Will Pee Your Pants:
Ugh, this is not fun. Laughing, sneezing or jumping are the typical triggers to causing some leaking. What I noticed is the inconvenience of being out and about, and trying to go to the bathroom with a baby and a toddler, or a baby and two toddlers. So annoying to drag everyone in, so I would hold it until I got home…BUT as soon as we got home, I would have to go so bad, I couldn’t always hold it. I swear, I need a potty in the car for myself. It is much more difficult to hold your bladder post baby, so just drag the kids to the bathroom when you need too. It is inconvenient, but not as inconvenient as completely letting it go in your driveway! Doing a recovery program, and focusing on strengthening your pelvic floor control (contracting and relaxing!!) really helps with this. I go over the CORRECT way to to do Kegels in the program. It’s not just squeezing!
If you are worried about gaining too much weight during pregnancy, I am almost done with my Belly-Only Pregnancy Fitness program! It will have workouts, Diastasis Recti prevention ab-work, pelvic floor protection exercises, recipes and more! Feel free to sign up to know when it is launched! I’ve been asked and asked to create this program, after my super popular postpartum recovery program, The Postpartum Cure. I will also offer discounts for both programs together, so you can stay fit during and after pregnancy!
These were the most unnerving experiences I had postpartum. Focusing on healing really helps minimize these experiences, but just know they are normal as your body puts itself back together!
If you need help losing the baby weight and keeping up your milk supply, I have a very popular program, The Postpartum Cure, which comes in an app you can download.