Week 2 & 3 Postpartum: Recovery is Rough
To say recovery has been rough is an understatement. Recovery has been hell and an absolute nightmare. I am frustrated and just want to get back to myself. This sums up week 2 and 3 perfectly.
My entire pregnancy I was concerned about having a rough postpartum recovery because of what I went through after giving birth to Raylan. I suffered a tear with Raylan and was afraid of the same thing happening with Rylan. Well, it happened and this recovery is 10 times worse than the first time. And because of that, I have decided that I do not want anymore children. Maybe it is the emotions and pain talking but this last experience has me done with having kids.
I want to feel like myself again and I’m not trying to rush the process. But, some women are up and at it right after labor and I wish that was my reality. I spend my day in my pajamas, lying in bed because sitting for long periods of time is a struggle and popping pain pills hoping the next day will be better. That’s not how I want to live life. I feel like it’s tough to really enjoy your baby when recovery is tough. I am pretty much alone most of my day so I don’t have a chance to take a breather and just rest. I just can’t wait for things to get back to normal. It’s hard not to rush the process when you’re used to always being on the go and being very independent.
I have googled how to make recovery faster and I have tried every method to make this process easier. And now I know the only thing that will make this better is time. I have to be patient with the process and give myself time to heal. I can’t compare my postpartum journey to others and I have to focus on my own recovery. Even though it’s tough and the birth was traumatic, I look at my baby and know it was all worth it.
In case you didn’t read the last blog, I had a traumatic birth experience. I was unable to push Rylan out because of the way he was lying. The doctor had to use forceps which caused me to tear and I’m suffering from a 3rd degree tear because I ripped from the vagina to the anus. (TMI) I lost a lot of blood and almost died in childbirth. Because of a blood transfusion and a great team of nurses, I’m still alive. The tear required stitches and now I’m recovering physically and mentally from that birth experience.
By week 2 of recovery, I had run out of all my hospital goodies and good pain pills. I was only given a week supply of the good pain pills and if I could have saw into the future, I would have saved them for week 3 because week 3 was absolute hell. Anyway, I also ran out of the disposable underwear, icepacks, the super absorbent pads and witch hazel pads. So, I had to figure out how to survive without those things. I had granny panties but with the huge pads, wearing panties was so uncomfortable. I went and bought adult diapers with the built in pads and these were a lifesaver. And I was afraid it would be bulky and show under my clothes if I went out but they didn’t. I was feeling a little better this week and was getting back on my feet literally. Birth had wiped me out and I was regaining my strength and able to do things for myself again. The bleeding had subsided by the end of week 2 and I was wearing panty liners by the end of the week. I thought since the bleeding had stopped that I was back to normal. I was wrong. The next week of recovery started and so did the pain. I wasn’t in a lot of pain the first two weeks of recovery so I thought I was good. Again, I was wrong.
This week was filled with a lot of tears, frustrations, pain and agony. I just so badly wanted to get back to myself and it was frustrating to know that I still wasn’t a 100 percent. I thought by week 3, I would be skipping down the street and jumping for joy. But, that wasn’t the case and I was miserable. I think if I would have continued icing the area, taking warm baths and using the Peri bottle of warm water during week 2 then week 3 would have went a little better. But again, I thought since I wasn’t feeling any pain that I was all better. Well, week 3 ripped me a new one and that’s no pun intended. I wish I could describe the pain but it was so unbearable. It was like giving birth all over again. There was a lot of pressure, throbbing, stinging and just pain. I could barely sit or walk. I spent most of this week lying down and popping pain pills. I suffer with constipation and the iron pills make this worst. I forgot that I needed to take a stool softener to make pooping easier. Welp, pooping made week 3 even more miserable.
I went out and bought witch-hazel to help with the pain. I bought stool softeners to help with the pooping. I also bought a reusable heating pad, heating pads that I could put in my underwear like the ice-packs from the hospital and Advil. I still had Ibuprofen left but I needed to be able to function during the day and those pills made me very sleepy and out of it. And I didn’t need that because I had a newborn to take care of. I begin using the Peri bottle filled with warm water and witch hazel whenever I went to the bathroom. I took a few warm Epsom salt baths throughout the day. I also begin freezing pads with witch-hazel and wore a couple of those during the day. If I needed to sit, I would sit on the heating pad. I also wore the heating pads that goes in the panties a few times out of the day. I was basically trying any and everything to stop the pain and get back to myself. I don’t know if any of this helped but by the end of week 3, I was feeling a lot better. I wasn’t skipping down the street or jumping for joy but I could sit for a period of time and I could walk without a waddle.
Everyday gets a little better and I’m starting to feel like myself again. Just as I have to recover physically, I have to recover mentally as well. I have days where I’m not okay and I cry. That day (the day I gave birth) was so scary to me and I think there is a reason that I am still alive. I now think if I’m truly living my life to the fullest and am I serving my purpose. What is my purpose? I think about this a lot. I read an article that you must mourn for the birth experience that you didn’t get and appreciate the one that you had. And I think I spent these two weeks mourning the experience that I didn’t get. I just wish my doctor was more patient and more caring and maybe my experience wouldn’t have been so bad. I just think about my birth experience a lot and all the things that went wrong and it makes me so sad. But each day gets better and I have embraced my near death experience. I didn’t fail at childbirth and I’m still a good mother. I have to remind myself of this daily. I survived and my baby is alive and well and that makes me happy. This postpartum journey is rough and very emotional but I’m pushing forward and trying not to be so negative. I know that this is all apart of the process and I’m just going to focus more on my newborn and less on my journey. Of course, I’ll let you know what happens in the following weeks of my recovery.
If you had a rough birth or postpartum journey, how did you make it?
I think I can credit having a great supportive team in helping me get through this tough recovery.