Mamas! These are from my personal experience with my vaginal birth experience, and going in for my third baby, these are things I'm glad to be prepared for. So you too may like to find some handy info out of the below!
A due date is typically not the date you will give birth. Your baby will be deciding to come whenever they want and you could end up; (a) delivering earlier, not getting in all your jobs or break from work you wanted in the weeks before baby arrives, or (b) deliver much past your 'due date' ending up feeling huge and uncomfortable, trying a heap of weird 'tricks' to get your baby to come! They say two weeks either side of your due date is considered normal, most LMC's will recommend an induction by 10 days past your 'due date'.
Sharing openly so your midwife and birthing partner know exactly what you want. A fantastic thing my midwife provided was an information/birth plan sheet for me to fill in, outlining my ideas. So when I was zoned out focused on birthing - she didn't need to ask me, or my fiancé anything about our wishes, she could simply refer to the sheet.
The sheet consisted of things from pain relief, to vitamin injections and placenta, who would be there and finer details like music. Do be prepared for change to the plan - as I learnt with my second birth experience - sometimes things won't go how you imagined, but being prepared that things could change will help you cope if they do (this can also be a part of your plan!).
One thing I wish I was more prepared for mentally, was the immediate aftermath of giving birth. I almost found it more uncomfortable, mentally challenging and at times more painful than birth.
There is a lot of blood. It all gets cleaned up pretty quick, but with the birthing of the placenta, comes a fair lot of blood. You might have to push again!Just when your insides feel as though they are going to fall out if you so much as laugh, you may need to push! But, you’ve got to get that placenta out! I was told it was as easy as a light cough, but for me it was a full blown push after I had medication to get it moving. Eeek.
Your baby will be taken at some point after birth and baby's first feed. Measurements, checks, clothing all need to be done, and you need to get into the shower to clean up ready for rest. Easier said than done ~ it can be hard when you are still bleeding, fatigued, sore and potentially light headed or nauseous. Ask for help if you need it- the quicker you are done, the quicker you can get back to your new wee baby - and bed!
Generally night two with baby is a lot of cluster feeding and sleep deprivation. Your new baby may just want to spend all night attached to your breast. It’s for a mix of comfort, warmth, food and security for baby - but all the same, you may find yourself questioning whether it was normal and if you can; (a) stay awake, and (b) do this mum gig! - You've got this!
Be prepared to be up a lot in the night in this time and try to do shifts with your partner so they can take baby from the room to give you a break and some sleep - you need it!
Enjoy your new baby! You've done amazing!
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