“The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new.”Bhagwan Ranjeesh
1. Well Done Mama!
First of all, well done Mama! You did it. Whether C-Section birth or Vaginal birth, you birthed a human!
2. Take Time To Enjoy The Miracle
Enjoy the first night googling at your little one and wondering at the miracle of giving birth.
3. Getting Your Bearings Right Takes Time
The first few weeks are the hardest and it’s okay. It takes a while to get your bearings right.
4. Breathe Mama!
Your newborn is fed. Maybe you have a toddler (like me) running around naked and probably on the verge of destroying the house. Take time to breathe.
5. The Pain Won’t Last Forever
Vaginal Births; The sit baths won’t last forever. The stitches will be absorbed into you (usually absorbable thread is used) or else little remnants that you have been stitched will be visible in the sit bathwater. Your lady parts will heal.
Caesarean Birth; A close friend recently went through this. She told me, it will hurt. It will hurt for a long while. Holding your baby might be painful. But it gets better. You will heal, inside and outside.
6. On Breastfeeding…..
It can be hard. With my first baby, I survived relatively unscathed. But with my second baby, breastfeeding was difficult. My nipples were bruised, I got sores and it hurt a lot. I later learned that we hadn’t been feeding properly, she was not latching the whole areola as she should, so this caused tension on the nipple. It was so painful, I would find myself crying as I fed her.
Lansionh nipple cream really helped, it was so expensive (almost P200 for the larger tube). Shout out to my husband for buying it for me. The price left me shocked but I used it, and the reviews were fantastic. All I kept thinking was, it better work on me, or else I’d cry for my money. Well, at the end of the day I can say it was worth it! It worked and I healed in no time. So I highly recommend it.
7. Massages Are Great For A Hurting Body
Your body will hurt. In Botswana, we have something called Botsetsi (confinement) where after having your baby your Mama comes/ you go to her house and she looks after you. Due to the modern life we now live, it usually lasts anywhere from 1-3 months. So my wonderful Mama would massage me every day with Arnica oil.
Massages are excellent as they really help you heal. Anyone who knows me would testify that I really don’t like massages, I find them painful but I really like the aftermath it leaves in my body. That feeling of relief makes you feel like the whole world has just been taken off your shoulders. Eventually, your hurt and bruised body will heal.
8. Be Gentle With Yourself
It will take a while for you to adjust. Chances are high that in some way your mental health will be affected. This is because having a baby affects you, not only physically but mentally too. Be gentle with yourself Mama. You are doing the best you can.
Take note that if you feel you may have anxiety or postpartum depression and GET HELP. It is nothing to be ashamed of.
So breathe. Find ways to practice self-care. E.g. take walks (even if they are mini walks), a long soak in the bathtub also goes a long way, read a book, read a magazine, exercise, call a friend, take time to laugh, etc.
9. Establish A Routine
At first, it will be almost impossible, because when a baby is born they control you. But usually by 8 weeks or so it gets easier. You would have learned each other, and maybe find it easier to establish one.
10.Remember, Baby Is Adjusting Too
Remember that baby is also adjusting too. Everything outside the womb is bigger and scarier. So sometimes baby will cry for what seems like no reason. Hug your baby, hold your baby closer, kiss your baby and offer them all the comfort and love you have to give them. The comfort that you as a Mama can bring to the baby.
11. Embrace The Newness Of It All
If this is your first baby, everything will be new to you. It will be like a whole new world. And the most beautiful thing is you get to tread the waters with the person who knows what your heart beats like from the inside! How beautifully fascinating is that?
If this is not your first baby, everything will seem new to you again and that is okay. Because this is another baby, a different baby. Motherhood is a process that we learn and relearn and that is one of the most beautiful miracles that we should be truly thankful for.
No matter what, you GOT this Mama.