Labour - Things I wish I had Known
When it comes to the birth of your baby there will always be things you wish ed you had known before hand. Many of us are completely clueless when it comes to pregnancy and labour, whilst others have heard about most of it, or have read every book and blog on the matter so feel pretty prepared.
I am one of the later, I read, blogged, googled and researched every single thing I could about pregnancy, labour and looking after a new born. But what I realised was, that no matter how well researched you are, or how well prepared you think you are, there will always be a few surprises in stall for you, particularly on labour day.............
To help you have less surprises on labour day I have listed here a few things that I wished I had known before hand, as well as including a few things sent in by our members. So read on and be as prepared as you can possibly be ....
Labour - I wish I had known about the birth:
That depending on when you go into labour you could go up to 20 hours without food
That you can go to the toilet during labour, yuck. But it doesn’t bother the midwives.
That I was not one bit embarrassed like I thought I would be.
That you can hear other women screaming in the labour ward
That after the labour you still look 5 months pregnant
That for a few weeks after the labour your body feels like it is made out of jelly
That your first shower will be a messy affair and tough for us queasy girls
That the postpartum recovery is as bad as the labour
That your perennial area will feel like a foreign object
That the little scratches and bruises on your labia hurt, particularly when you use the bathroom. NO-one tells you how hard it is to sit, pee or shower after birth. OUCH!!!!!
That you lose enormous blood clots the size of a 50 cents piece for days after the birth, and you can keep bleeding for 6 to 8 weeks afterwards
That you will most likely get haemorrhoids from all the pushing and they HURT!!!
That your stitches feel like hard cardboard and make it sooo hard to sit!
That you still get twitches and stingy sensations ‘down there’ for months after the birth.
That breastfeeding feels natural, but doesn’t come naturally.
That the first bowel movement is as bad as they say it is.
That you will be so wired after the birth you may not sleep, I was up for 36 hours straight.
That the Cafe’s shut at 6pm, so there is nowhere for your husband to eat if you delivery at night.
That if you don’t have a natural bowel movement by about 4 to 5 days after your labour you will be given an enema.
That you get no rest in hospital what so ever, rounds start at 6.00am and you will be visited all day, obstetrician, paediatrician, physiotherapists, midwives and caterers.
That you can hear babies crying all night in the hospital and they keep you and your baby up.
That if your waters break naturally you will most likely be induced.
That I was more prepared for the “aftermath” of the labour, I was so scared of the delivery I hadn’t even thought about the haemorrhoids, stitches and swollen bits that come from labour.
That it would be so messy, both during and the days after the labour.
That if you have an epidural you have the catheter in for 24 hours, and are bed bound.
That you don’t get a shower straight after the birth, I had and epidural, and didn’t get a shower until about 20 hours after the birth, as I couldn’t walk.
That no matter how fit you are, labour is VERY hard work.
That you can say NO to your Doctors and Midwives, it is your body and your choice.
That it is normal to cry all of Day 3 after labour.
That your obstetrician only comes in right at the end, the midwives look after you most of the time.
That if your Doctor is away you will get someone else. This can be hard if you had high hopes of having YOUR obstetrician.
Read everything about caring for a newborn before the baby is born, as you won’t get time once they have arrived.
Work out how to use all your baby equipment beforehand, there is nothing worse than trying to read a manual and put together some piece of equipment when you are sleep deprived and your baby is crying.
That I should have trusted my instincts more so, rather than listen to everyone else’s advice and opinions.
That I should have instructed that there were no visitors until Day 4; I was just so wrecked after the labour I just wasn’t up to company.
That if you have to share a bathroom, you can sometimes get caught having to wait for the other person to get out of the shower or bathroom, and that sometimes they forget to turn off the “In Use” sign so you stand around waiting for an empty bathroom.
That your neighbour’s visitors can keep you up.
That you never get two minutes peace. Rounds start at 6am, and there is always someone coming in to your room for something. So forget about reading all those magazines you bought.
How hard it is to try and sleep in hospital.
That you are really shaky on your feet for a few days.
That you get very hungry between dinner and breakfast, so keep a few bits of food for a midnight snack.
That you don’t always love your baby straight away. It can take time to warm to the little one.
How much you love your baby straight away. The feelings of love are so intense!!!!