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Six Real Life Challenges Faced by New Moms

Six Real Life Challenges Faced by New Moms

The challenges of being a new mom are many! Some a little more obvious than others, and number one I really wish somebody had warned ME about!

1) The recovery:

It is pretty common knowledge that getting baby from inside out presents challenges whether you deliver vaginally or by C-section. We talk about epidurals, contractions, the most pain you have ever felt, how long the delivery takes… but why doesn’t anyone talk about what follows?

After a vaginal delivery:

Your vagina hurts. For days. Weeks even. Walking is hard. Sitting is hard. Peeing is excruciating. You will feel like your insides are still falling out of you for at least a few days, maybe more. Expect that, and prepare for it by making ice popsicles.

After a C-section:

You’ve just had a major surgery. The severity of that is often overlooked in an age where we can choose to schedule the procedure on a day and time that suits. But… the recovery time is longer than with a vaginal delivery and it can take from 4-6 weeks for your body to heal properly.

2) Breastfeeding isn’t always easy

You have a plan. You’ve heard all about the benefits of breast over bottle and you know you are going to breastfeed. But the baby has different ideas, or worse your own body may have different ideas. Breastfeeding is a uniquely individual experience between mother and child. Unfortunately not all combinations will work out in the way you had hoped despite your best efforts and intentions. Remember at the end of the day, fed is best, and you with your baby will figure out how to best make that work for you.

3) Everyone is an expert!

Now is the time that everyone will come out of the woodwork to tell you how to best care for your baby. Smile politely, nod once in awhile, listen if you actually want advice… and then do what you feel is best for you, your baby and your family. There are no right answers in parenting; you’re the boss now.

4) You will be tired all of the time

I know you’ve heard this one, but it bears repeating because there is no way to properly convey to you how tired you will be. You will find energy and strength you didn’t know you had and you will use it to get through— but it will be hard and you will be tired. Your energy levels should return to normal when baby grows up and goes off to college.

5) Postpartum Depression

You think it won’t happen to you, you hope it doesn’t, but it might. Be aware to look out for the signs just in case you need some extra support during this extremely emotional time after the baby comes. Signs of postpartum depression include; an inability to bond with your baby (this does not necessarily mean that you aren’t taking good care of your baby, just that you may not feel connected emotionally to the baby yet), excessive crying, mood swings, withdrawal from family and friends, and overwhelming fatigue are signs to pay close attention to. If you are feeling any of these things it is definitely worth mentioning to your health care provider.

6) Everyone wants to visit

They mean well. They love you and they are so excited to meet the baby. But you are tired, your partner is tired, and you just don’t feel like it. Say no. You are not obliged to entertain company if doing so is to your detriment. It can be an exceptionally overwhelming time so save your visits for when you are up to it, and only allow the people you feel close enough to that you don’t need to have a shower… so you can turn the visit into an opportunity… to hand over the baby to your guest for a while and to take a shower.

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