Postpartum recovery: this are the things they never told you

The Frida Mom ad that was rejected by the Oscars and ABC has gone viral and sparked controversy. Many state the media is to blame for not keeping it real and that this topic needs to be talked about. A mommy blogger said she wasn’t prepared for what would happen after labor and how to care for her body; had she have known about the products, her recovery would have been better. I pride myself in keeping it real and the objective of my blog is to be raw, honest, supportive and encouraging towards moms. I’m share my postpartum recovery and I’ll be detailed and graphic. 

If you don’t know what I’m writing about, let me explain. Postpartum..

Frida Mom sells postpartum labor and recovery products. The ad shows a mom going to the bathroom and using the products. There’s nothing outrageous, it’s a representation of what life is like after labor.

When I was pregnant with my first, I read tons of books, got advice from my mom friends and joined 5 online chat groups. One of the most popular questions is what to pack in your hospital bag, but surprisingly, most of the conversations were about the products to use after labor and the infamous mesh underwear the hospital provides. So what exactly do you need and why? 

You will bleed like you’ve never had a period.

One of the perks of pregnancy is that you don’t get your period, but after labor it’s a bloodbath. Mine lasted two weeks. I was told to buy adult diapers so you don’t ruin your undies, but I didn’t use them. I used large pads and had old granny panties that I later tossed. You will need large pads because your flow will be heavy. Don’t use a tampon because you’re healing. And if they give you mesh undies at the hospital, take them home. 

Your first time peeing! Technically the first time, the nurse helped me and the other times my mom or husband would help. You’re not supposed to wipe so the hospital gave me a perineal bottle to spray warm water on my vagina. Moms suggested I purchase one that has witch hazel or you can buy witch hazel pads to place on your pad; they help alleviate the pain and sting you feel from urinating. 

Taking your first poop!

A lot of women get constipation so the hospital gave me pills but I didn’t need them. By this time, I knew what true pain was as I just pushed out a baby, so when I went to the bathroom, it was uncomfortable but ok. 

The worst part and what no one told me was that I would get a hemorrhoid. Now that was pain! It was hard for me to walk and the cream I would apply barely helped. I was living in NYC at that time and I remember we had to take our son to his 2 week appointment. We took a bus and a subway and boy was that commute torture. I could barely go up and down the stairs at the subway station. I was taking Tylenol which seemed to do nothing and on top of my pain and wearing a large pad, my breasts were leaking through my breast pads. One night I was crying hysterically because the hemorrhoid pain was unbearable. The doctor said to use the potty the hospital provide. I filled it up with warm water, placed it on the toilet and sat there for 15-20 minutes. But when I would first sit on it, it was tortured. It burned, but at the same time it was soothing. 

Everyone’s postpartum journey is different. I had a vaginal birth so I’m not 100% sure how a c-section heals. But it’s important that you take this time to properly heal and rest. You need to be patient and kind to yourself and to your body. The pain is temporary and trust me, seeing your beautiful and healthy baby makes it all worth it.