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26 Sep '14

Stupid Hormones

Posted by Rebecca Angell

This one is mainly for the first time mums and how frustrated some of them will be once baby arrives.

I still vividly remember the first week I was home with my baby.  It was day 5 and my milk had started to come in.  Now I was aware that we would cry a lot during the first 10 days while the milk is being produced etc and your body is working overtime to repair, reduce, produce and de-fluid itself.  It is so amazing from a science point of view what the female body can do during and after childbirth yet at the same time unbelievably frustrating from an emotional point of view!!! STUPID HORMONES

Day 5 and baby was asleep after her morning feed and I went to have a long hot shower.  I was very aware I was emotional and extremely sensitive to both good and bad things.  Huggies ads were the worst! STUPID HORMONES I couldn’t walk or stand for a very long time (about 2 minutes was it) due to a lot of stitching so I managed to sit on the shower floor.  Because I was so far away from the showerhead the water was colder than what I wanted but I couldn’t reach the handle to turn the heat up to I started to cry.  I called out to my husband who came in and was immediately sympathetic.  I managed to blubber to him that the shower was too cold so he turned the heat up and sat with me in the shower in his clothes.  I explained to him how ridiculous I knew I looked but I had no control and couldn’t stop the tears.  The harder I tried, the more they flowed so I let nature take its course. STUPID HORMONES.

The reason why I am sharing this is because no one is explained to me how little control you have over your emotions particularly in the first 2 weeks.  To be honest, I think my husband was warned far more than I was.  If someone sat me down and said “you have no control, go with it, be patient” the frustration wouldn’t have been there as much and I probably would’ve accepted it more rather than fight.  During the first 2-3 weeks after giving birth, you must must must be patient with yourself, your body and your partner.  Remember, it took your body 10 months of hard work to create this baby and it’s not going to change overnight back to “normal”.  Get your partner to have some of your favourite things in the house, some of your vices.  It can be a particular fruit, chocolate, candle, pillow anything.  (If it is junk food, try to keep it one serve a day, particularly if your breast feeding, and have it at night as it gives you something to look forward to during the day) Pick your vice and have it ready in the house before baby arrives, this way your organised and your partner won’t get in a fluster (as men sometimes can) when these highly emotional times hit.  Mum needs something nice just for her particularly in the first few weeks as you are healing, sleep deprived and getting to know your baby. Mum matters, your needs matter! And there is no stupid part to that!

Keep in mind these highly emotional times are normal so be kind to yourself and your partner.  I wasn’t patient enough and was constantly angry with myself simply because I cried a lot and this anger affected my confidence with my baby.  If this post prevents another woman from being hard on herself then perfect! I would do anything to take away that pain for any new mum.  If your emotions haven’t calmed down from 3-4 weeks, go and speak with your GP immediately.  More than likely, it will be your partner telling you to go to the GP because you won’t notice.  I know, because it happened to me.

If you have any queries regarding this topic, you are welcome to contact me directly.  I am no expert but am extremely happy to share and listen: rebecca.angell@eatplaysleep.com.au

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