You’re expecting your firstborn in the next month. You’ve been looking forward to becoming a mother for years, and now that it’s really happening, you can’t contain your happiness! For you, this will be the best moments of your life. With a child, your marriage with your husband will become stronger, and finally, you’ll have your own family.
Yes, motherhood can become a bliss but on the other side of the coin, there are some things which you probably don’t know about the entire process. You might have been told by your family and friends about what motherhood and childbirth is but there are things which you’ll only know (and experience) once you’re in the delivery room. To know what are these, consider the list below:
1. You might not be allowed to eat: This notion might not be too common but eating is sometimes prohibited when you’re about to give birth. When you eat too much, food might get into your airways and can cause problems during labor, especially if there’s a possibility of a cesarean section. This is why you’re recommended to eat clear liquids and ice chips as a preparation for childbirth. This rule may vary depending on your healthcare provider, hospital and birth centers.
2. You might push for a long time: You might have seen in TV shows how easy it is for a woman to push during labor. In real life, this isn’t always the case. When you’re a first time mom, expect that you’ll be pushing for a long time. You might even push 15 times within three hours! But going through all of these things are normal. If you want to be prepared, you can take comprehensive childbirth classes. Aside from pushing, this is where you’ll learn coping strategies needed after childbirth.
3. You’ll feel like you're running a marathon: During the last weeks of pregnancy, it’s normal for you to be tired and lose sleep. Who wouldn’t? You’ll be spending too much time at the bathroom to urinate and looking for a sleeping position which you’re comfortable with. But the exhaustion doesn’t stop when you give birth. On the contrary, it’s just the beginning. You need a lot of energy (and time) to take care of your newborn child, adjust to their sleeping patterns and meet all of their demands.
4. Breastfeeding can hurt: This might not be true to all mothers out there – who have an easy nursing experience from start to finish – but there’s also a handful of mothers who find breastfeeding painful and need support. It might hurt especially when your breasts become sore or when your child bites on your nipples. But this is something you should expect and learn from.
5. “Natural” means different things to different people: If natural childbirth is a priority for you and your husband, be sure to discuss with your healthcare provider so everyone will be on the same page. When you’re about to go into labor, details like these should be clear so you’ll know what to expect and what preparations should you have. Will there be no or minimal interventions during childbirth? Will you be allowed to drink or eat? Just keep in mind that plans might change depending on how your situation would progress.
6. Pain relief isn’t a guarantee: In some cases, you’ll be injected with anesthesia as a preparation for childbirth. This can help alleviate the pain but keep in mind that this isn’t a guarantee that you won’t feel any pain at all. If you’d had a surgery or infection in the past, the anesthesia might not spread in certain areas or the body. This is why at times, women might feel pain in one side of the body.
7. You might poop during childbirth: Ask your friends and family members how their childbirth experience was and for sure, you’ll be hearing stories on how one of them pooped. This is typical during childbirth and you have nothing to worry about when this happens. According to doctors, they even encourage mothers to “push as if they’re popping” and if they’re popping, they’re actually doing it right. This might sound disturbing but you’ll be surprised how doctors don’t care once this happens in the delivery room. They just wipe it away and get ready for the birth.
8. You’ll have a “new normal” down there: When you just gave birth to a child, the structure of your vagina will change. And this doesn’t go back to normal too fast, this will be your “new normal” for a while. For women who are breastfeeding and are in their 20s or 30s, vaginal dryness might also come as a surprise.
9. You’ll bleed for a while: After you gave birth, you’ll bleed afterwards. But you don’t have to worry because bleeding after six weeks of giving birth is normal. However, how heavy the bleeding is might shock you. If you’re concerned of how long your bleeding is, talk to your healthcare provider.
It Pays To Be Prepared
No doubt, being a mother is the most fulfilling job any woman can have. When you’re a mother, you have to be prepared 24/7 and ensure that your child will only get the best in life. Aside from taking note of the information presented from this article, you can also prepare yourself by acquiring services which can make the entire childbirth experience easier and more convenient. An ambulance cover from your insurance policy can give you several benefits which you can use during childbirth.
Jessica is a professional health expert who works for major health industry giants. She currently writes for Membersown and is dedicated to helping people learn more about health related topics along the journey. When she's not a health advocate, she enjoys some down time traveling or talking with family.