Postpartum essentials

Before giving birth I also read a lot about things that you should keep in the house for when you come back from the hospital. And here is a list of things that I have actually needed or been happy to have.

  • Maternity pads and big panties to go with them.
    I thought that I would be able to switch back to normal pads already in the hospital ha ha boy was I wrong.
  • Spray bottle for water
    In the hospital the shower was right next to the toilet which made it easier but at home we don’t have the luxury, so I’ve had a spray bottle to use instead of toilet paper after peeing, because, it hurts to pee.
  • Belly wrap
    I don’t know about you guys but after giving birth it literally felt like nothing in my stomach was attached, that everything was just flopping around in there. So a belly wrap made walking a lot more comfortable. I only use it when we go out for actual walks though.
  • Easy self care products
    I’m so so so happy for my skin care products that I normally use because they’re fast and they’re easy. I use a skin care device and not a 7 step skin care routine which made it a lot easier to keep taking care of my skin in this new situation.
  • Tank tops
    I went out and got those nursing tops, but to be honest a normal tank top works just as good for me. So instead I would spend that money on buying more tank tops instead. In that case I think nursing bras are more worth it.

Other things that have helped a lot is for example to get groceries delivered so we don’t have to think about that and a good big water bottle cause man does breastfeeding make you thirsty.

What I actually needed from my hospital bag

I was preparing a lot of things during my pregnancy and one of them was the hospital bag. Just type in hospital bag on pinterest and you’ll see how many different suggestions pop up. Which is of course good, but also makes it a lot harder to know what is the right things for you. So here is a list of the things that I actually needed from my hospital bag.

For baby
Now obviously this can differ a bit depending on the weather. Giving birth in the middle of summer in Spain makes it a lot easier to pack for baby.

  • Diapers
  • Cleansing wipes
  • A few onesies
  • Hat
  • Blanket
  • Car seat

For me
I read all about all the different clothes and stuff I needed to bring, and sure it’s since you don’t know it’s good to have options so that you’re comfortable.

  • A top that will be easy to breastfeed in if you’re planning on doing that
  • Big as panties for those big as pads (the pads I got at the hospital)
  • Slippers
  • Shower products
  • A few skincare products
  • Contact and glasses
  • Clothes to go home in, comfortable clothes, no tight pants!

This is different for all people, but straightening iron, make-up and all that was definitely not something I needed.

Other stuff you might need, dependent on what you like and usually use and need. We spend a lot of time watching Netflix, but I also loved having my journal so I could right about all the things I had just gone through and was going through.

  • Speaker to play music (I didn’t use mine)
  • Laptop (with Netflix)
  • A book
  • Notebook
  • Baby book/journal
  • A lot of liquids, vitamin drinks and water
  • Some snacks

If I would pack my bag again I would definitely go more basic. But it’s also different for us who don’t really have anyone here. We couldn’t just ask someone to bring us something, we had what we had haha. And having never given birth before, obviously I had no idea. So hopefully this can be of help to someone else!

The first days in the hospital

So I meet our daughter for the first time, and we stayed in the birth room for a while to just be and let it all sink in. After a while they came to move us up to our room. And during the next 48 hours that’s where we were. I’m really happy with our choice of hospital, it was such a great choice. The hospital and the personal were really amazing. But spending 48 hours in a room is not fun, no matter if the room is good and the personal is nice.

I got a proper bed, Emma got a proper bed and Odi got a sofa bed. We got checked on and we got served food. We got to sleep and shower and rest. And we got to start to get to know our little girl. We also of course called around to everyone to let them know that she had arrived and all the grandparents, great grandparents, aunts and uncles were overjoyed.

It’s all kind of confusing and overwhelming. I all of a sudden life was completely changed and there was this little creature needing us and non of us ever changed a diaper before. But slowly but surely we started figuring it out. It is a bit stressful to have people running in and out all the time and you feel a little watched. So eventually we were just longing to get home to get some space and find our own way.

It was a huge relief to get to leave the hospital. They had us waiting for like 4-5 hours more than they initially said so by that point we weren’t really nervous anymore but just impatient. And finally we got to leave. She slept the whole trip home and it was amazing to come home with our new little family member.

Meeting my daughter for the first time

After 36 hours and the traumatic experience of pushing a baby out of your body, and all of a sudden she’s there. She’s just there. And all the movies show you that as soon as they give her to you all the pain goes away and you just sit there and cuddle your beautiful baby. What the movies don’t tell you is that there is still a placenta to give birth to, and probably stitches to get, and that the baby actually almost looks dead when it first comes out.

For me it was so hard to understand that what they put on my stomach was actually a baby, and that it was my baby, and that I just gave birth to her. I was dizzy and confused and exhausted and I just wanted to lay down properly without my legs in the air. But I needed to stay where I was. So she was laying on me but my arms were weak and my mind was focused on getting the rest of the pain over with. So our doula made sure she stayed there.

All I could think was just that I didn’t want this painful moment to be the first meeting with my baby. I wanted to be done with all of that so I could focus on her and it felt like it took forever. Finally, it was done and I could put my legs down and lay in a some what okay position and even if I was obviously still in pain, there wasn’t more to be done by me or to me. And I could hold my baby girl properly for the first time and really look at her.

It was actually really scary to feel that way. To feel like I didn’t want to hold her at first. It felt wrong somehow. And especially since you have this picture in your mind of it all being happiness and smiles as soon as she’s out. And the picture of feeling that instant connection. It really had me worried that something was wrong with me.

But nothing was wrong with me, I was traumatized from the experience, completely exhausted, confused and dizzy and in a hell of a lot of pain. But as soon as it was all over with, really over with, I did get to feel that connection, however unreal it felt to be holding a baby that is your own child. Seriously does it ever start making sense?

And still, she’s completely unreal to me. Sometimes I just need to sit and stare at her for a while. It completely blows my mind that it was her in there all this time. And now she’s here. And today we’re leaving the hospital to take her home!

I do not wanna be pregnant anymore

It’s no fun being pregnant. I’ve had a pretty easy pregnancy, I’ll admit. And it hasn’t been all that bad for the most part. But now it honestly just sucks. I was so sure I’d be early that I felt like I was late already before my due date and now I’m past due, feeling like I’ve been pregnant for years.

And it’s not like you’re feeling super up for doing the things that is said to induce naturally. Exercise with feet double their normal size that feel like they’re about to explode as soon as you stand up? Take the stairs? Eat spicy food when you’re throat already is on fire most of the time doesn’t feel like an amazing choice either.

But, I am going for a morning walk every day. And went for an even longer walk yesterday, which turned me into a pile of sweat. And also using on a birthing ball, and taking the stairs. I’m trying. And I’m dying.

So the latest due date that was said was the 17th, the one before that was the 19th, and the first due date we got when I first got pregnant was… TODAY! So let’s all hope that today is the day. Cause I do not wanna be pregnant anymore. And I wanna have this whole child birth thing over with.

Cuqui is waiting too!

I promise to not take my body for granted again

This is my promise to myself. And I’m writing it down, both in my journal and here, for anyone to read (and remind me of) so that I don’t forget that I made this promise.

First of all I will never take my body for granted because of what it is capable of. Of what it can fucking do, which is completely inhuman. Because my body created a life, a human being.

Second of all, because I realize now how much time I have spent taken my body for granted. Blaming it, mistreating it, hating it. Not any more. I will not allow it. I have always been lucky and some what healthy and “normal” weight no matter what I put my body through (I mean come on, at some point I should definitely have been over weight with how I treated my body) and it has kept strong through laziness.

I realize now, how much I have taken all these things for granted. The easy movement and flexibility, the flat stomach, the non swollen feet and legs. I also realize how awful I have been to it, both physically and mentally.

So from now on I will be grateful and treat my body with the respect it deserves. I will take care of it and I will cherish it. Not only am I grateful that I could get pregnant, and have a completely non problematic pregnancy, it’s is also going to give birth, and heal afterwards (I hope… haha)

I have noticed a significant difference in the diagnoses that I have, psoriasis, arthritis, migraines and IBS since taking better care of myself mentally. Just imagine how amazing I would feel if I also took better care of myself physically. And this pregnancy has given me that motivation, to not take my body for granted, to open my eyes to how truly amazing it actually is and to stop hating it, and being mean to it.

It’s time to let go of all the old grudges and love my body like it deserve to be loved and treat it like it deserves to be treated. I promise, not to take my body for granted again.

She’s supposed to come today!

We’ve gotten a few different due dates during this pregnancy. First it was the 21st, then the 19th, and the latest one… today!! And of course, this is just as much a guess as anything else, but it still feels totally crazy. I was of course sure she’d be early, so for me it feels like I’m already late. And I am so ready for this pregnancy to be over.

We’re going to the hospital to day, to do a 20-30 min monitoring of the baby and a visit with the midwife. Apparently they have a tendency to advise induction when they think the baby is big, and since they’re saying this baby is huge, that might the case. If there’s no other medical reason to induce I do believe it’s better to wait and see if she’ll want to come on her own.

It feels completely crazy still that I’m gonna be a mother. And it’s hard to understand what everyone says, that it all comes so naturally. I do have a lot of trust and believe in myself and in Odi as well, so I do believe that we’re gonna do great. I guess it’s just like with other things in life, you have this image of what it’s gonna feel like when you’re there and then it turns out you’re completely wrong. Kind of like when you were young and thought that those who graduated high school was all grown up, ha ha ha. I kind of feel like that, like shouldn’t I feel more like an adult by now? I mean I’m having a baby like TODAY, and I still feel like I just graduated high school.

I still have such a hard time connecting to that it’s an actual person in there. An actual person who’s gonna be here soon. A person that’s gonna be a mix of me and Odi, that we’ve created, that we’re responsible for. I guess it all falls into place when we see her, when she’s here. But for me, it’s still super alien.

How did you feel at the end of your pregnancy?
Did you feel ready?
Did it all really come all the naturally?

Gratitude

I am starting my week with gratitude. I have spent the last week walking around being impatient and stressed. And I am not saying that it will change any time soon, unless this baby decide to come… But I am changing my mindset today and focusing on gratitude.

In a lot of aspect of my life I am in between right now, and I do not like it, I don’t like being stuck, to not move forward and to not make things happen. It has been a valuable challenge though. And so I am deciding to shift my focus to gratitude.

I am grateful for so many things in my life, and when it’s hard to step out of the impatience, at least I can be impatient and grateful at the same time. I am so grateful for all the amazing things in my life, and all the amazing things that are coming. I am grateful for this time of having to slow down and calm my mind, even though it’s hard, it’s good for me. I am so grateful for this pregnancy and this baby, and for my fiance, our apartment and our dogs and living in Barcelona. I am grateful for my friends and my family and all the support they give me.

Gratitude is so important, cause what you focus on grows, so if you’re focus on being grateful for things you will most likely get more of the things you’re grateful for, just like you’ll get more of the negative things if that’s what you focus on.

So let’s be grateful today, my friends. For all the things that we have. Even though the wait for the things I don’t have yet is really, really tough.

In my bubble

I am giving myself permission to stay in my bubble. Maybe this happens when you come to the end of the pregnancy, anyone else experienced it? Or maybe it’s partly because of the heat, and partly because of the direction my life has taken recently.

I am in transition, I can feel the energy and my path changing and I need to just feel and follow. I am in complete reflection and creativity mode and I need to allow myself to be here. So often I just rush off to the next thing and never slow down enough to see where I am actually heading and why. So recently I got a wake up call and realized that something needed to change.

The timing couldn’t be better, with it being the end of the pregnancy and me needing to rest and take care of myself anyway. So I am in complete self care and development mode. It’s still a bit hard though, to completely allow yourself to be in that state. I feel that there is so much pressure to be and do it all that if I stay in the house (Yas AC, thanks) I feel like I should be out and about and make the most of every day. But for now, this is making the most of my day and my time.

I can’t say that it’s completely stress free. I do have child birth on my agenda and it scares the living crap out of me. So I am waking up 50 times a night having had a dream that I was in labor and not knowing what is true and what isn’t.

Give yourself permission to sign out and step into yourself. When it just involves watching netflix and laying on the couch it might not be the best thing, but when it involves digging deep, reflecting and taking care of yourself and your mind, then sometimes it’s exactly what you need to move forward in the right direction!

Self Care with a baby

It’s so important to put yourself first. You can’t pour from an empty cup. So I have been thinking about that lately. How to keep up with my self care with a baby. It must be tough, but it must be possible.

It’s so important for my well being, my habits, to keep my routine. It’s important for my mental health and for my happiness. I’m guessing that I will fall out of it with a newborn but then I’m gonna have to find a way back, even if it might have to be a bit differently.

What are you opinions? Did you have a self care routine before having kids? How did kids effect that? How do you keep up with your self care as a mama? Let me know all your tips and all your challenges!