Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Postpartum Reflections

Today is the day Iyla was "scheduled" to arrive! Our little bean is now 8 days old, and thus I am 8 days into my postpartum recovery time. Overall, it has been going really well. My lady parts are a bit sore- the worst of which are the sweet hemorrhoids that developed, making it really hard to sit comfortably. But I have been up and about really easily since we returned home- another blessing of being able to birth vaginally.

Here are some of the fascinating things I have observed in the past week:

*My bleeding isn't bad at all. In the hospital I had the equivalent of a heavy period, but it has now tapered off to light spotting.

*My desire for sweets immediately went away with birth! So interesting. Perhaps it is Iyla who has the sweet tooth!

*My 'need to eat NOW" morning nausea, which I had the entire pregnancy, is gone and my appetite has drastically reduced. The few times BC and I have ordered food he teases me because I am still ordering to eat for two- and my eyes are definitely way bigger than my stomach now.

*I am insanely thirsty pretty much all the time.

*I've woken up several times in the night drenched in sweat. Apparently it is my body's way of expelling all the extra fluid accumulated during pregnancy & from the IV fluids I had during labor.

*Breastfeeding has a steep learning curve! Iyla learned to latch well about 24 hours after her birth (with a lot of trial and error), and my milk officially came in on the afternoon of day 3. I've already had some fun with engorgement, leaking, & extremely sore & flaky nipples. We are getting our stride down now... and hopefully it will just keep getting easier and easier. I also learned from pumping in the hospital that my left breast produces 2x as much milk as my right! And hence that is the side I am currently experiencing engorgement with. My nursing MUST HAVES are:

*Breast pads (the left is leaky!)
*Soothie gel pads that can be heated or cooled (helps with engorgement)
*Lanolin cream (great in the beginning when my nips were SO sore & flaking)
*Breast Pump
*Nursing tank tops (love the Target brand)
*Sleep nursing bra (it is like a sports bra and holds the pads nicely)

*Even though I am not sleeping much, I have amazing stores of energy and am feeling great (so far). Yes, I have sleepy moments, but the bliss of this little one energizes me like nothing else. I haven't even really been napping during the day- and at night I am up every 3 hours to feed her, and the feeding, diaper changing, & getting her back to sleep take the bulk of an hour. So sleeping 2 hours, up 1 throughout the night.

*BC has been absolutely amazing. He rocks the diaper changes & is SO good with Iyla and SO in love with her. We have fallen even more in love with one another as we watch each other blossom into parenthood. It has expanded both of us exponentially already.

*I am enjoying not being pregnant any longer. Don't get me wrong- I loved my pregnancy and loved feeling that little one inside me, but oh is it nice to have my body back! I can move so much more freely again... can bend forward and walk normally again. I feel so much lighter and free.

*I am in awe of my own body. How it produces enough sustenance to nurture another human being. How it instantly readjusts and recognizes I am no longer pregnant (as evidenced by my food & hunger shifts). But most fascinating of all? How that belly of mine keeps shrinking every day! At one week postpartum I have lost 13 pounds, almost half of the 28 total I gained. 

 One week postpartum belly. Still very squishy but shrinking more every day. And as it shrinks, my boobs just keep getting bigger! Can't say I mind. : )

And for comparison's sake, here is my belly one week ago (2 days before Iyla was born) vs. today (her one week birthday):

Hopefully very soon BC and I can start going on walks with our little one, getting a little fresh air and exercise. We have to take advantage of these 2 weeks he is home with us, which I am so grateful for!


  1. Awesome! This is all good news! I was wondering if my sweets craving and appetite would go away. :)

    It's very promising how well breast feeding is going for you! I am nervous about that.

    You look wonderful!

  2. You are probably thirsty from breast feeding :) So glad that is going well for you! It is definitely a learning curve, steeper sometimes than others, so it's great to hear you are getting the hang of it so quickly!

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