The things no one tell you about becoming a new parent
- During the pushing stage of delivery, you may poop. It’s ok. Everyone does it. (Unless the midwife was trying to make me feel better.)
- After giving birth you feel like your guts are going to plop out of your bum when you need to do a number two. It sounds horrible, but sadly true. Using the facilities for the first time after a VB (vaginal birth…not Victoria Bitter, though perhaps the feeling may be the same?), I felt like I was giving birth to my intestines. I timidly checked the bowl, and breathed a sigh of relief that I was still internally intact.
- Strangers will think it is ok to touch/pat/kiss or even take your baby. So far I’ve had an older lady (complete stranger) try to take Evie off of my husband, another kiss her on the cheek, and another stroke her face before tottering off to her car (this took place in a car park, and no I had no idea who she was). We have decided to deal with this issue by cupping the offending party’s cheek in return. (Facial cheek of course.)
- Well meaning family and friends will doll out advice about…well…pretty much everything. I had a family friend tell me it was rubbish to start Evie on a sippy cup just last week. Even though my Maternal Health Nurse said go for it, (skill development yo!), this was not good enough apparently. This person was calling it silly whilst Evie calmly sipped out of her cup making happy noises. It is ok to say you do not agree. In fact, said person was a little surprised I think when I said “Come off it. I don’t see what the big deal is. She’s fine.” You are the parent. You get to choose how things are done. (Except for when they are 30…time to cut the apron strings perhaps.)
- Your relationship with your body will change. However, you inner dialogue has a lot to do with this. I loved my pregnant body. I loved seeing my belly grow and swell with new life. After birth though, it felt like a deflated, jelly like balloon. And that is ok. That is what your body looks like after holding and growing another human for 9 months. I have stretch marks on my tummy and hips, my bust is like the prow of a ship, and I seem to have more curves, but I am ok with this. I was sensible during pregnancy, I ate well, exercised, and couple of months or so after having Evie, I started the healthy mummy smoothies. I am proud of my body! I do not look at it with disgust, it housed my child, it nourished her, and it brought her into the world. It won’t be the same as when I was 15. And that’s fine! My husband didn’t marry a 15 year old. He married me. And he loves me no matter what shape I am.
- You will over share, and tell everyone about the poop explosion your child did the night before. We over shared to some young friends of ours last night. A look of horror crept over their teenage faces, whilst Jonny and I laughed about the amount of poo, the frequency, and where it ended up. You will become a conisseur of snot, analytical about odours, and an expert at cleaning up vomit. And your childless friends will find it all slightly repulsive…until they join the club and you trade stories like Pokémon cards.
- I am discovering every day new things about myself, my husband and my child, and I am so excited that this journey is ongoing for the rest of my life. Despite the craziness, unwanted advice, and massive chest, I can say honestly that I love being a new parent.
This article was written by Beck Hendropurnomo
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