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My Labour Recovery

All births are different and not all 2 are the same, but I wanted to share my experience and my recovery. This might be TMI, but I would have loved to have known some of what I experienced before hand so I wasn't so worried.

Firstly I had a vaginal birth, with an epidural. I was pushing for an hour and half and ended up with a 2nd degree tear and 2 grazes. The tear was stitched up with disolvable stitched in the perineum. The stitching were incredibly painful when being done, the epidural had clearly wasn't in my system any more. I was discharged from hospital the next day and my recovery began.

The stitches were not an issue for me and didn't cause me much discomfort, however the tears were very painful when going to the toilet. For the first 3 weeks I wore Tena underwear to control the bleeding and any other leakages that may occur. These were a life saver as you do bleed a lot more than a normal period and it can flow more depending on your activity level. With that said, I have to ensure that I kept and eye out for any clots which were plum size or larger. This did happen and I contacted the midwife service, which assured me that it was probably due to my activity level that day. However, I had to continue to keep an eye for any more as it could be an indication of something more serious. During this time I used a peri bottle to clean myself and to water down any urine which may irritate my grazes. After 3 weeks I transitioned to maternity pads, as the flow started to slow down. At about 10 weeks I had finished bleeding and the stitches should have been dissolved. However, the grazes took a long time to heal, taking nearly 16 weeks to fully heal where there was no pain when urinating. Everyone also says that the first wee is a killer, honestly it didn't faze me at all, but it took a while to poo. I had such a mental block I though I was gonna bust my stitches open and fall out. I took some advice from the midwife and I didn't rely on laxatives/stool softners as I didn't want to rely on them when things got easier. When I finally went it was a relief and a long while (sorry), but when you have just given birth it is the scariest thing you have to do. My advice for this is take it slow, don't rush, if you get the urge just go and breath. It's like your giving birth all over again so just breath and don't push.

As for my excess skin, the bit that gets stretched when your baby grows inside of you, well that is definitely still here along with the stretch marks. I'm nearly 5 months on and the stretch marks have started to fade, but some of the bigger ones are still very much there. I am still trying to get used to the stretched skin, it's strange I don't notice it as much when I'm standing but sitting it's very apparent. I am currently in no rush to get myself fit as I am still healing mentally from the entire delivery and motherhood side. But hopefully I want to start to work on my self when I get back to work and in a new routine. This is OK though, you don't have to try and get back to normal straight away, I mean it is strange for the first 4 weeks (well it was for me). As once my baby was out everything kind of dropped and was empty. I looked kind of weird but slowly I got used to it and it started to go back in. I know it's a process but it will come back in time. 

On top of this it took me a good couple of weeks to stop reliving the pain of child birth very time I fell asleep. It's such a major trauma which your body goes through that sometimes it remembers and relives the pain. This meant a lot of difficult sleep, as well as still being in the mind set of having a baby bump. Numerous times I woke up holding my belly thinking he was still in there.

Finally we get to the epidural, yes something that quickly wore off after I delivered has caused me issues which I am still recovering from. Back pain! When I went into labour I had horrendous back pain and this is why I had the epidural in the first place. I was in so much pain it felt like I was being hit by a car every time I had a contaction. There are effect that the epidural can cause for giving birth but I didn't realise how it can still effect you months afterwards. I had back pain and a weak back when lifting my son, walking with him was difficult enough along with carrying the car seat. I'm lucky that Bruce had time off before he returned to work, as I know I would have struggled to do simple tasks with him. As it was our first journey to the shops took it out of me and I had to use the pram for support. I still have back pain now but I'm kind of used to it, and the more my baby grows the more I know it will ache. But honestly if I ever get back labour again I will still go for the epidural.

I hope this has helped show case some of the recovery and issues you may face after having a baby. Everyone is different and your experiences may be very different to mine, but I hope to give you a little more clarity to what to expect.

Stay Gorgeous 


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