Postpartum Firsts

First period:
Yes, this has happened already, much to my disappointment. It started at exactly 10 weeks postpartum. I was acutely disappointed as I’d hoped to escape the red witch for a few more months still. According to my subsequent googling, the return of “Aunt Flo” (not to be confused with the insurance chick), varies wildly, both from woman to woman and from pregnancy to pregnancy. I assume that, for me, it was preceded by Alex beginning to sleep longer stretches at night and perhaps nurse less frequently and for shorter durations during the day. Sleep vs. Period…. I guess I’ll take sleep. It wasn’t a nightmare like I’ve always heard the first period is- I didn’t have cramping or endo pain, and the flow wasn’t even very heavy. I also wasn’t an emotional psycho, though the day I started I did cry. A lot. About everything. Sometimes I wonder if it was even a real period. At least I know I’m not pregnant again already.

First sex:
We ended up waiting longer to do this than we ever thought we would. I mean, we did some other stuff to keep from going crazy, but actual sex didn’t happen for awhile. My postpartum bleeding lasted for six weeks. Then, after a short break, I bled again for a few days. We’d been told to wait for two weeks after I stopped bleeding, so I think it ended up being 9 weeks or something like that. And it was like the first time. I seriously felt like a virgin all over again, which is a super weird way to feel after having a baby and all. My incision site where I had that extensive episiotomy is still pretty tender. My midwife told me to massage the tissue, inside and out, to help get rid of scar tissue. I think it’s important to do because a lady at church told me that her episiotomy site STILL hurts (and her youngest is probably 8?!). Yikes.

First Time Out Alone:
I don’t remember exactly when this happened, but I went to the grocery store one night after realizing that I hadn’t really (translation: not at all, not one bit) been out of the house since Christmas. It had probably been about a month and I was still too nervous to go anywhere alone with Alex, but I was about to go stir crazy being indoors and at home all day every day. Next time I would not wait so long. So I went to the store. I was gone for less than an hour, but it felt weird to be without Alex. The whole time I struggled to gain perspective on my life, thinking “I just had a baby, I have a baby now, I’m a mother, I have a son”. I felt all weird and shaky walking down the aisles. Since then I’ve done solo shopping trips several times and I don’t shake or repeat the same thing over to myself in ten different ways anymore, but I still feel weird without Alex. It’s like this strange empty, half-there feeling, and I find myself just wanting to get back to him and wondering how he’s doing- even though every time he’s taking a long nap in his daddy’s arms.

First Time Out With The Baby Alone:
I had to take Alex to his chiropractor appointment and my husband had returned to work that week so….. It was my first trip out with him all by myself, and I’d kinda been dreading it. I’d heard that new moms were always scared of this and never understood. Until it was my turn. First of all, putting him in his car seat freaked me out. Second of all, carrying him out to the car freaked me out. Thirdly, bringing him into a building with other people around freaked me out. Fourthly, the possibility of having to nurse or change a diaper somewhere else freaked me out…. You get the picture. I was afraid of squishing him in his car seat, not being able to calm him having a huge uncleanable mess, and who knows what else. I just had this unexplainable sense of anxiety whenever I took him somewhere, and this has only recently began to subside. It’s weird. So this first time, it of course took much longer to get him and myself ready and in the car than I had anticipated. I actually had to call and tell them I was going to be late. Thankfully they said I could still come (I didn’t want to have to do it all over again!). To my surprise, things actual went very smoothly and knowing that I could pull off an excursion with the baby really gave me a sense of freedom that I hadn’t been feeling. He didn’t get squished in the car seat, I didn’t drop him, there were no catastrophic messes, and we even got home before he needed changing or nursing. The worst thing was how flustered I was trying to pay for our appointment while Alex expressed his dislike of sitting in his car seat. I still didn’t go places with Alex very much at this point, but it’s mostly because his naps aren’t predictable yet and disrupting them can really screw up a day. I look forward to getting out more in a month or two.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Danielle Benda
    Mar 13, 2013 @ 17:21:44

    Good job, Momma! I’m already house happy and it’s only been 11 days since CF’s birth. I’ve been out once, with the Mr and baby, and had some of the same fears, but I felt waaay more confident by the time we got home. I’m sure you’ll be out and at ’em, and feeling good about it, before you know it! D x


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