On The Brady Bunch, Carol never had to do anything without help. Alice did the shopping with her, cooked dinner with her, and made herself the butt of a lot of the jokes (supposedly so Carol never looked dumb). In the real world, you’re probably going to do most of these things on your own (though hopefully with help from hubby?) The cupboards may be stocked with goodies, the pantry may be filled with treats, but it seems like there are always errands to be run. And guess what? You don’t have to do them alone. Now you get to do them with a heavy, irritable, impatient infant. Here are 10 survival techniques to get you through what used to be an easy trip to the supermarket:
Vaginal or c-section, sex after a baby will be different. The doctor won’t let you have sex for 6-8 weeks after your baby’s birth, so you don’t have to think about it immediately anyway. But when you do, it may be easier (or more difficult) than you imagined.
Your physical discomfort from your vaginal delivery may make it hurt for some time. The achy-ness of your c-section incision may also be a physical hindrance. What else? Your boobs used to be just for fun – now they have a (very un-sexual) job. Your baby is sleeping in the crib right next to you. Your baby is crying in the crib right next to you. When your partner talks dirty and says, “I want to *&^% you on the beach”, you think, “But who will take care of the baby??” You may also have left over consequences of having a baby, like your hemorrhoids, vaginal discharge, and your hair is falling out. These things make you feel terribly un-sexy.
And you’re so tired! You’re so tired that the last thing you want to do is slip into sexy lingerie (like your husband asked you to) and act like you’re young and frisky again. You may just have to go easy on yourself. Maybe you won’t have sex for another month. Or another month after that! This won’t mean that your relationship has fallen in the pooper. It means that you have other priorities (but you still love one another) and you’re tired (but you still love one another) and you’re thinking about the baby (but you still love one another) and you just want to go to bed.
And if you want to take a whack at it, remember these important things:
How will you know you’re in labor? Much like life, labor isn’t usually what it looks like in the movies. You already have plenty on you mind, and now you have to wait around, often beginning a whole two weeks before your due date, wondering, “Am I in labor??”
Here are things that may happen leading up to you going into labor:
In the movies, a woman will be walking through a department store, when suddenly a gallon of water falls from somewhere up her skirt, and onto the floor. This is certainly not common. For most of us boring folk, we first noticed we were in labor when we had contractions. The confusing thing is, though, that you’ve probably been having contractions on and off for a while, so how do you know this is it? Here are questions you can ask yourself:
If you answered yes, then you’re in labor, friend. If you answered no, then go take a walk through a department store and see if you can make a splash.
For as many steps as I’ve taken toward moving on, there are still days where I feel like I’m caught in quicksand.
No matter how much I work, or how many weekend trips I plan, or how many runs I do in the morning, no matter how much I fill my day planner, I cannot escape the miscarriage. I’ve tried my best to fill my life with work, and friends, and church, and books, and magazines, and exercise. I’ve tried not to leave any room for grief. But somehow, it keeps finding its way in.
If I’m quiet for one moment, I slip into a daydream where I imagine myself six months pregnant or decorating a nursery. I catch myself imagining my husband rolling over in the morning and kissing my big belly, whispering to our son or daughter.
I fall into pockets of sadness in the mundane moments of my life – just today, in the simplest act of wiping down the sink after rinsing dishes. I had to turn away from my husband because I didn’t want him to see the tears in my eyes. I know he could sense something was wrong but there’s nothing I can say that will help him, or anyone understand.