I can’t believe its Friday (all of the days this week have sort of blended together), but it is a very important Friday. MAY THE FOURTH BE WITH YOU. Yeah – nerdy Star Wars reference. You’re welcome. But more importantly than that, it is our son’s first Friday in the world so in his honor instead of just doing 5 facts about me (do you guys feel like you know me super well by now?) I’m going to do 5 facts about Pregnancy/Delivery that I didn’t know before I had babies, but wish I had. I do solemnly swear NOT to give you gory gross weird facts. Just some slightly odd facts. and stuff. So here we go…
- Your nipples get bigger. And Darker. Sometimes. I felt like this was WAY more pronounced with my first child but it’s basically for your blind-as-a-bat baby to find the milk and the right place to latch. I felt SO weird when it first happened but don’t worry – they shrink back down after you’re done breast feeding.
- It takes a YEAR after birth for everything to make its way back into its original place. Think about it: your Uterus moved up into your tummy to make space for baby and pushed everything else out of the way. You are not going to walk out of the hospital feeling 100% with your organs and tummy back in place. It just ain’t gonna happen. Give your body some time.
- Epidurals – the Lidocaine they give you before your epidural…hurts. A Lot. like a lot a lot. My sister in law actually gets her epidurals WITHOUT the lidocaine (and she has four kids!). I’m not that brave so I still get it but it hurts. Prepare yourself.
- Labor can take a long time. Even if you are on Pitocin, even if you’ve been having contractions, your body might just struggle with it. My first delivery took 23 hours. 23 hours! And all but the final hour of it was just getting my body to respond to Pitocin and dilate. Now my second delivery was only 8 hours, 1 hour of which was waiting for the doc and holding the baby in, and I didn’t even need Pitocin, but every pregnancy is different. Just don’t plan to be in and out in a matter of minutes. Not a thing.
- Babies are gross. They look like little old men when they are born, their skin peels off, and their first poop… man. Make sure you change it right away (it looks like black tar and if you let it harden it can take an act of God to help you get it off – and lead to a crying baby)! BUT – the second you hold them, and realize that you just birthed a baby, your heart gets a little bigger to make room for them. I will tell you – for me personally – the whole “as soon as I held him I was in love” thing didn’t really happen. Now as soon as I held him I knew I would jump in moving traffic to protect him, and I did love him, but there was no “instant super deep connection”. With both of my kids it took time to develop those deep bonds and feelings. So if you have your baby and think “I’m not feeling it, everyone said I would feel it” – you. are. not. alone. I have a stronger connection with my daughter right now than my son, but I’ve known her longer. I feel like that makes sense. But they are both my kids, I love them and would do anything for either of them. But for me it wasn’t instant. **That being said – if at any point you feel like hurting yourself or your child or apathetically leaving them somewhere this can be a sign of postpartum depression. It is a real (and really serious) thing. I have friends who have gone through it and it is ROUGH. Do not hesitate to call your doctor. Do not hesitate to tell your husband. Do not chalk it up to “I’m tired”. Do what is best for you and your family. Love and support in abundance from me to you.
So that’s my 5 facts for this week. Maybe you knew all of this, maybe not, but I feel like each time I do this crazy thing (you know…having a baby) I learn something new. Was there anything you thought was weird and learned in your delivery? Comment below! I’d love to hear!