Post Partum Recovery, Round Three: one week

In Porter's one week post, I didn't mention a lot about how his mama is doing because I wanted to do a separate post all about my recovery. I've done this in the past, with a one week post after Truman, a two week post after him, and an 11 month post about my mom bod. Then with CC, I did one post partum report around 2 weeks.

I will preface this post by saying that I am leary of coming across as bragging or taking this smooth recovery for granted. I can promise you that I'm very thankful for my healthy baby, my relatively easy recovery, and the incredible blessing that all is going so great for us right now. Truly---I feel overwhelmed by how lucky/blessed we are at the moment and know a lot of mamas would gladly be in my shoes as they struggle with postpartum issues (mom and or baby). So big hugs to anyone who is going through challenges that I'm not having at the moment. It can be so, so hard in any given situation so I don't want to make light of recovery in general. I don't want to alienate any readers who cannot relate to a good experience, but I do want to be honest in that it's going pretty well over here. I hope that makes sense.

First, let me tell you a few of my favorite things about NOT being pregnant (and overdue!) anymore.

-the sudden panic that 'holy crap, I haven't felt the baby move in a bit'….only to realize Im not pregnant and I'm holding my healthy newborn (noted on day 4).

-not having to pee every hour (noted on day 4).

-bending over! (every day)

-feeling light as a feather when standing up from a seated position or climbing the stairs.

-being able to lean over into CC's bed to kiss her goodnight without my belly getting in the way/causing a giant contraction.

I really thought I'd miss my pregnant belly more than I do--maybe that will come later but for now I'm LOVING having this baby on the outside;)

Milk matters:

My milk came in on Saturday afternoon/evening---right after 24 hour mark. I just noticed Porter gulping during a session and noticed my opposite side leaked onto my nightgown. I guess I forgot that my milk came in that quickly with CC, too, but it's a good problem to have I suppose. Porter had the famous totally yellow poops by day 5.

The worst engorgement: Sunday evening, all day Monday and part of day on Tuesday(day 3-5). It was worse than I remember, but I hear Pitocin can make engorgement worse. I pumped on Monday (day 4) for relief and also had to hand express a bit. It's so freaking weird to simply push on my boobs and have milk drip out. Kind of gross, kind of weird. The boobs just felt like hard grapefruits and it was very uncomfortable, hard to dress appropriately, and felt so foreign to me. Luckily by Wednesday (day 6) it felt much, much better. That seemed to be when Porter could tolerate feeding on both sides, too.

Another 'worst'--the uterine contractions while nursing. I feel like these were the most pronounced this third time around and a nurse said that it can be worse with each baby as my body tries to shrink down my 'old pro' uterus. Dang. Some of those contractions during nursing sessions were as bad as early/mid labor. This got a lot better by 3-4 days but man, talk about making my eyes roll back into my head a bit at first!

Other bodily fluids talk:

Ah, the fun part of recovery includes the bloody, messy, rather disgusting parts that not everyone enjoys rehashing. Hope you don't mind but I will talk about blood here.

I know after Truman's birth, I was totally horrified by the first trip up to the bathroom. #MurderScene. So for CC and also with Porter, I was prepared for the insane amounts of blood. This time around it seemed like the first 24 hours were the worst for bleeding through my pads/clothes and I totally did leave a blood trail to the bathroom in the hospital many times. But then by 48 hours it was better and now at one week, the bleeding is a LOT better. I'll still have some gushes with nursing but no huge clots this time (I think I had some with CC and it was really scary). I know I'll be wearing a pad or at least a liner until about 5-6 weeks again. And as someone who hasn't had a period since August of 2011 (yes! Almost 3 years!), bleeding is not that much fun but whatever.

The whole 'potty process' seems better and I stopped using the peri-bottle and mammoth hospital pads after a few days at home. I'm sure that not having a true tear this time makes for a better recovery down below, too, but overall I think the physical recovery has been the easiest the third time around.

Night sweats are back and not my favorite but I just tell myself I'm losing water weight while soaking my sheets each night!

Baby weight talk:

First time around, I gained 43 pounds total. At one week I had lost 21 pounds, and at six weeks I still had about 18 pounds to go. I ended up losing it all within 9 months but stopped tracking it to avoid going crazy.

Second time around: I gained 34 pounds total. At one week I had lost 13 pounds, and at two weeks I had 19 pounds to go. Same story, it gradually all came off after that and I could technically fit into my work pants by 3 months but didn't really notice any big changes after that. Just slow, gradual weight loss evident by 9 months for sure. I'm really not big on weighing myself at home ever.

Third time around: I gained 31 pounds total. At one week, I'm down 14 pounds, with just 17 more to go. So it's definitely coming off quickly for now and I guess I have less weight to lose in general. I'm honestly not focused on this at all right now, since I'm just trying to eat when I'm hungry (a LOT of the time, bigger appetite now than I had a few weeks ago with the final days of pregnancy). I know better than to attempt any regular/fitted pants for awhile and am totally fine with comfy lounge wear for all of maternity leave, anyway. But it's nice to know that once I start really exercising again (cannot wait!!) the weight will probably come off like it has before. Always a delicate balance between maintaining my milk supply and losing the weight and I'm fine with keeping a 5-10 pound padding in place during breastfeeding.

So this was me the day we came home from the hospital, 2 days post partum:
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This is me at 4 days post partum, when my boobs were at their PRIME:
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And this is me today, one week post partum: (don't you like how I had to stand on my air mattress here?)
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I don't believe in makeup on maternity leave, especially the first week.
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Other superficial comments: people have told me that I look great for just having a baby and I take that as a major compliment. I do sort of feel like Porter has been the kindest to me in terms of my looks post-birth. Not sure how that is possible since he was my biggest and most gestated baby (is that the correct term?), and I'm older this time around, obviously. But for whatever reason, I do feel like I look decent for having a baby a week ago. Maybe my standards are just lower now and that whole 'perspective' idea is helping tremendously again. Or the fact that I am still riding the high of a great birth and healthy baby.

Oh, boy. That two day induction was REALLY rough on the younger-first-time-mom-me with Truman, huh? A little better after CC, but a big difference with my 'favorite' birth of Porter. Plus, maybe just better lighting;) Crazy!

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Mommy energy levels/mental health:

Honestly, this part has been amazing for me with Porter. I don't even want to sound like I'm bragging or showing off either, but I feel really awesome at the moment for energy and mental health. I'm sure that's in part to having a LOT of help at home, the great weather outside, and having a relatively easy baby (FOR NOW! I still don't want to jinx this one).

I'm napping for a bit most days but sleeping pretty well at night, too, so I don't feel totally burnt out. I think I was sleeping less at the end of my pregnancy than I am right now anyway. I was able to walk around the zoo with the family yesterday and didn't have a lot of extra bleeding but I DID need a couch nap with mister man on my chest. Duh. We also took a short walk around the block as a family and that didn't seem too awful. It feels like my pelvis is super wobbly and my core is absolutely weak, so it was a weird sensation to be active. Like I could feel my pelvic bones shifting with each step. No plans to get crazy with physical activity or anything, but I was walking a TON those last few weeks of pregnancy and it would be nice to get out and enjoy this fine weather we are having without worrying about overdoing it too much. We will see. No rush.

I find my emotions are 95% intensely happy and only about 5% anxious/worried right now. The evening and night time hours are always a crap shoot for how I'm feeling (all of the feeeeeeeelings swirling in my head!), but this time it seems to be better than the previous two times. I will chalk this up to summer weather versus winter/late spring for my other kids too. Because longer, warmer days? Always better in my book.

Did I miss anything with the recovery talk? I may do another post like this in the future as they seem to be popular, maybe since not everyone talks about this 'fun' stuff. But (much like Porter's own one week post): So far, so good!

9 comments:

  1. It's insane - but silly girl, don't worry about 'bragging' - it is what it is! You are very lucky this time around and it's so awesome!! I cannot get OVER that one-week-postpartum bare belly. You look better than most girls who haven't had a baby. ;) Amazing!!

    So glad you're doing so well, and I've said it a million times, but man I hope my experience is half as good as yours with #3!! The comparison for all three babies is so awesome. You are very blessed!!!!

    Good call putting down all these details, since they're so easy to forget!

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  2. I love all the details before, during, after pregnancy. It's amazing! I think you look similar in CC and Porter's after shots. I remember being easily tired after having a baby. I would have so much energy to go to the store and then just be zapped.

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  3. You look amazing, and I am seriously soooo impressed that you walked around the zoo at 6 days pp! I have had two uncomplicated, relatively "easy" vaginal births with only one first degree tear in each, and I basically didn't leave my house except for ped appointments those first 2-3 weeks--walking anywhere but from the bedroom to the bathroom to the couch to the kitchen was too painful! Although both my babies were winter babies, so I think in some ways I kind of relished the cooped-up feeling--I totally hear what you're saying about wanting to take advantage of summer weather when you have a July baby. Love your list of things that are awesome about not being pregnant--mine is the same, except maybe I'd add "Not having to push off the couch with my arms when I stand up." Also, nursing contractions are my least favorite thing about the immediate postpartum period! They were so terrible with my second, and seemed to last a couple days longer too. I felt a little silly because both my births were unmedicated and I thought I was pretty decent at handling pain, breathing through contractions, etc. But then the nursing contractions were like whoa...

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  4. Loved reading this, so glad it's gone well for you!! I think it's very obviously how grateful you are for this 'easy' experience!

    And yes, your 1 week post-partum belly looks way better than my 2.5 years post-partum belly :) Ha!

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  5. I totally agree that you shouldn't worry about bragging. It is what it is - you can't feel guilty for things going well!

    Contractions during breastfeeding. The worst! I've also heard they get worse each time. I remember nearly crying on the couch while nursing Miriam on day 3. I was sore, my boobs hurt, and the contractions were killer. Yuck!

    I'm most impressed with your zoo visit. Go girl! With both Isaac and Miriam, I remember feeling awesome by day 6, going on a nice long walk, and then hating myself afterwards because it made me so sore.

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  6. First, you are a birthing and recovery inspiration! Second, right after I had my daughter I still looked super pregnant and when I walked down to the nursery a nurse asked if I was in labor...I laughed at her and told her I was visiting the giant baby, that I just delivered yesterday and the. Proceeded to tell her how skinny and awesome I looked compared to the day before. I was a hot mess after that, but that's my one story of keeping a positive perspective postpartum! Good for you!!

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  7. So glad recovery is treating you well! You look fab! And high five to those bewbs! Despite the painful engorgement I'm always so happy to be sporting some big old knockers ;)

    I think first baby post-labor pics are the worst because that's when we push the hardest and longest, right?!

    Oh my goodness, night sweats and wobbly pubic bone! I forgot about those! Yikes! Love that you are doing this before me so I can get those reminders :)

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  8. I'm so glad you're feeling good!! I actively hate postpartum, feel like crap--it's like some kind of insane PMS, no sense of humor, no energy. Things are going well, so happy. love, Val

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  9. It's a gift to feel so well after birth and I'm glad you are having that experience! I found it so lovely to feel well after Lily's birth, but her whole pregnancy was easier (well, the end of it) compared to Oliver's.

    The "OMG I haven't felt the baby move!" feeling always takes a while to subside in me, too...and it's usually while I'm holding the baby in my arms. Ha.

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