Planning for life after birth can be challenging because it’s hard to know what to expect as a first-time mom.
This post contains affiliates links that can be used at no additional cost to you, please see the disclosure page for more information.
Here are my top postpartum tips and lessons I’ve learned since giving birth.
After you’ve had the baby, the real work begins.
- How to Create A Postpartum Care Kit for Healing After Birth
- What is the Cost of Childbirth (Like Really
- How to Prepare for Baby Financially
17 TOP POSTPARTUM TIPS FOR NEW MOMS
POSTPARTUM HOSPITAL TIPS
- Relax as much as possible while you have the assistance of a nursing staff.
- Be sure to ask questions when you don’t understand.
- Take home any and all freebies the nurses and/or staff provide (Those white short/undies, that squirt bottle, those thick pads, baby pampers, baby formula & syringes if you plan to bottle feed).
BRINGING BABY HOME POSTPARTUM TIPS
- Have the car seat in the car and ready to go.
- Meal plan or have freezer meals planned. Eating well helps with energy, recovery, and breastmilk.
- Have the plan for who will be staying with you and for how long.
- Have an idea of how you want to handle visitors, especially the first few weeks. When family and friends come over and ask how they can assist…, food is a good request. 😉
POSTPARTUM LIFE AS A NEW MOM TIPS
- Sleep whenever you can.
- Take it easy. Your body will be in recovery mode.
- Losing the weight can wait. The uterus needs time to shrink and hormones are wild, be kind to your postpartum body. Talk with your doctor about when to start exercising again.
- If you have concerns about breastfeeding, talk with a lactation consultant.
- Accept help when you need it. Trying to everything yourself, when you have assistance is a fast way to mental and physical exhaustion.
- Take the maternity leave you can afford to take, it’s a great time to bond with your baby.
- Don’t forget to get fresh air. It’s easy to get consumed and spend weeks inside. A step outside can do wonders for the mind.
- Self-care is a must. A car without gas can’t carry anyone. Moms are known for taking care of everyone. Tending to your own care is super important too.
- If you feeling overwhelmingly sad and depressed, seek help immediately. It’s not uncommon to have these emotions.
- Enjoy being a mom. The first few months is the most challenging, but it’s an adjustment period, it gets easier.
6 THINGS I LEARNED AFTER GIVING BIRTH (POSTPARTUM LESSONS)
1. Healing is a process.
I had a non-complicated intervention-free birth. That’s right, I skipped the pain meds and felt every single contraction. To the mom who told me birth doesn’t hurt that bad…lies or that wasn’t true of my experience. The pain of childbirth didn’t make my experience ‘bad’, but after birth I had to manage stitches and hemorrhoids which was a more lasting discomfort than the birth itself.
Healing took time and patience that wasn’t always easy to find. Be intentional about making space for you and your physical and mental healing. It matters.
2. After birth there can be heavy bleeding.
No one talks about it, but after months of not having a cycle, I was not prepared for the flow that followed my birth. You may think this bleeding is unique to women who have had a vaginal birth but all women who give birth (even by cesarean). This source and this source report that women typically lose 500 ml of blood after a vaginal delivery and 1000 ml of blood after a cesarean section.
Also, the combination of blood and tissue that the body discharges post-delivery is known as lochia, it helped your baby grow in-utero but now that the baby is out it’s no longer needed; therefore, whether you’ve had a vaginal birth or surgery, you can expect to experience blood loss, small clots of blood, and discharge.
*If you’re bleeding is excessive at any point or you experience large blood clots, don’t hesitate to contact your provider as postpartum hemorrhage is a serious condition that can cause a dangerous drop in blood pressure.
3. Breastfeeding is natural but that doesn’t make it easy.
Yes, read this carefully.
If you plan to breastfeed, learn as much as possible before your baby arrives. This course is an amazing low-cost resource. I recommend learning about breastfeeding before you give birth. I did not do this myself and I struggled to get my daughter to latch, I struggled with milk production, and pumping at work became a chore that wasn’t producing great results.
Preparing for this stage with information and reliable resources can help relieve some of the stress and overwhelm from the new challenge that is nursing.
4. Postpartum sleep deprivation is real.
I didn’t really know what real exhaustion was until I became a mom. I used to think exhaustion was…I worked late and have to get up early.
Psst! That’s nothing compared to my body is healing, my breasts are making milk, my baby is up all night, and I still need to shower and take care of myself exhaustion.
If you have a baby that sleeps well consider yourself super duper lucky! I seriously considered heading to Australia (different time zone) to get a sleeping schedule that my baby was apparently on.
5. People will want to visit right away, just to hold the baby.
I’ve lived in my same home for years; however, since having a baby my visitor count has tripled. I guess these people (grandparents included) are happy to visit for the baby…but us parents, we are old news!
6. Life will be amazing and difficult.
Meeting your baby after months of kicks and punches to the gut is amazing. Growing a human is an experience that is difficult to describe.
That new little person will command the majority of your energy and attention, and just when things get stressful, that little baby will grab your finger or grin at you in just the right way to let you know that it was all worth it.
Yep. I learned lots of lessons from having my first child and here are some tips to help other moms transitioning into the postpartum stage.
If you are pregnant or a new mom, I hope these tips help you plan your first few weeks postpartum effortlessly. After the hard work of having a child, a stress-free beginning to mom life isn’t too much to ask.
Be sure to follow along on PINTEREST for more pregnancy and mom content.