I swear, in addition to offering labor and delivery classes, new child care classes, and breast feeding classes, they should really offer a postpartum care class, because DAMN was I unprepared.
The healing after giving birth was totally something I didn’t even consider or think about until literally the day after when I realized I couldn’t walk by myself- let alone go to the bathroom alone. Luckily, I’ve got a pretty great support system of women who went through L&D before me & came to my rescue pretty quickly. My best friend came and dropped off an entire care package of items that her cousin recommended I have to get me through the first couple weeks (things she used and found helpful). And let me tell ya, I would never have thought of any of it and it saved me and made the healing process much more manageable.
I also recently shared my go bag and postpartum essentials on this post here, most of the items you’ll see duplicated down below.
Before leaving the hospital, I asked my nurse for extras of EVERYTHING. She packed an entire bag full of things for me and this is something I definitely recommend anyone preparing for labor do! I left the hospital with extra postpartum underwear, witch hazel pads, dermoplast spray, and ice packs. Then, the second I got home, I ordered more of what I knew I’d need more of- hi witch hazel pads and ice packs (cannot have enough)!!
Because I’m still in the very thick of the healing process, I’ll share my postpartum journey in its entirety at a later date, but I will say, the first 2 weeks are no freaking joke. The first week especially, I mean your body was essentially split open and is having to re-glue itself back together which is no easy feat. Throw in the fun of a changing hormonal rollercoaster and let me tell ya, you’re in for a good time!
Physically, there is pain, especially if you have an episiotomy, like me. There’s no way around that, but these items I’ve listed above definitely helped me manage the pain- lots of ice and witch hazel cooling pads, on top of prescription Motrin they gave me at the hospital. If your doctor asks you if you want a prescription to take home- ABSOLUTELY GET IT AND TAKE IT HOME. If you don’t feel like you want to take it, then don’t, but it’s better to have on hand just in case.
It was probably Day 7 postpartum when I felt like I didn’t need the heavy duty ice packs anymore, but definitely still needed something to ease the pain. A girlfriend of mine sent me a “recipe” for “padsicles” and these were honestly such a game changer. If I had known this little trick existed prior to giving birth, I for sure would have loaded the freezer up before hand. These are like mini cooling packs that are much easier to function with rather than sitting with a giant ice pack in your underwear, at least when the giant ice pack is no longer a necessity (because I know for those first couple days, there’s just no substituting it).
Here’s how to make them!
What you’ll Need
-Aloe Vera Gel
-Lavender Essential Oils
Step 1: Open up the pads without removing the packaging and squeeze the Aloe Vera Gel along the center of the pad, rubbing it in throughout the entirety of the pad.
Step 2: Spread some of the witch hazel down the middle of the pad. Because it is a liquid, it will spread pretty fast so you don’t need to use a whole lot.
Step 3: Dab some lavender essential oil throughout the center of the pad.
Step 4: Fold the pads back up and put in Ziploc baggie to freeze! Use as needed, taking a pad out for about 2 minutes to defrost before using.
That’s it for today! Thank you for reading!