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Updated by Ellie Harvie-August on Oct 28, 2014
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10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby

Having a baby is a crazy thing, it changes everything, and I mean everything!

1

Once you give birth your stomach feels really spongy for a while!

Once you give birth your stomach feels really spongy for a while!

With no baby in your uterus anymore, your tummy just kind of instantly deflates a fair amount, but where your stomach muscles had to move about and everything moved to make space for that baby, it winds up feeling like a sponge. Odd, but true.

2

You might not feel that instant rush of love - and that's Okay

You might not feel that instant rush of love - and that's Okay

Giving birth is the craziest experience, your body literally does the most incredible thing and sometimes that is just overwhelming and you need a few hours just to come down from that and realise what you actually did. Once that happens, cuddle your baby close and breathe them in, it's amazing.

3

You'll bleed a lot for a really long time after delivery

You'll bleed a lot for a really long time after delivery

Yup, sadly it's true. You'll need to stock up on maternity pads like crazy. You'll bleed from anywhere between 4-8 weeks after you give birth and it's sucky. Lochia (as it's called) starts off bright red and winds up being a yellow-y colour... nice...

4

If you tear or have to be cut during labour it can take a really long time to get back to normal

If you tear or have to be cut during labour it can take a really long time to get back to normal

It's possible you might tear or need to be cut in order to deliver your baby vaginally, and this sucks. It can take a really long time to feel "back to normal" after tearing, in fact, after 7 weeks and three tears I still don't feel back to normal. Be kind to yourself though - you just delivered a baby!

5

You are at your most fertile after giving birth!

You are at your most fertile after giving birth!

Yup, even though most of us wind up feeling like we could definitely wait quite a long time to have another baby after giving birth, you are at your most fertile right after you deliver. So unless you are keen for a rapidly expanding family - it's time to break out the contraception!

6

Every labour is different - don't listen to anyones horror stories

Every labour is different - don't listen to anyones horror stories

Everyone has a horror story and when you are pregnant they just can't wait to share it with you. The truth is, your labour, your birth won't be anything like theirs and you need to just shut your ears and not pay any attention. Educate yourself, don't terrify yourself!

7

Prepare for the unexpected - Anything can happen

Prepare for the unexpected - Anything can happen

I'm not saying, don't make a birth plan, I'm saying don't expect it to go to plan. Know yourself, know your wants but also allow yourself to adapt and change with the situation if you need to.

8

After birth a plastic jug is your best friend

After birth a plastic jug is your best friend

If you have to have stitches, a plastic jug can be your best friend. Fill it with warm water and pour over yourself as you pee. Not only will it stop any stinging but it'll help keep your stitches nice and clean, preventing infection.

9

If it's your first time, it can take a really long time to get going

If it's your first time, it can take a really long time to get going

Long latent phases of labour can be common in first time mums. The latent phase is that first really annoying bit where your body tries to get to 3 centimeters dilated. The longer this lasts the more frustrating it can be, but try to relax. Birth needs lots of the happy hormone oxytocin so no stressing out for you!

10

Trust your body

Trust your body

Even if you wind up needing a bit of help or even having a c-section - your body does know what it's doing, it knows how to heal and cope. So be patient and calm - it will all be ok in the end.