They say labour is like running a marathon, I am not sure about that ( as in which is worse/better) but it is definitely an assault on your body of sorts with a great result for both.
With my first baby, like many do, I went in fairly blissfully unaware what lay ahead. Putting the feet up the last few weeks was about all the ‘preparation’ I did for Josh’s arrival into the world. The room was done, the clothes were bought, the buggy was made but I had not really thought about how it would affect my body.
Whilst I had a fairly ‘easy’ labour and pregnancy with Josh, it was fast and furious and like many others I did not come away completely unscathed.
This pregnancy has been totally different. I had bad nausea and vomiting until 26 weeks and still do on occasion. My back (upper and lower) is in constant pain and just this week after several weeks of being a complete moan I got my iron levels checked and they too have plummeted. (one big giant moan to add to the list now too)
This is my ultimate moan face.. I took it to remind myself one day of how tired I actually was 😝 I do not share this easily I might add!
Based on the above I have taken some steps to get ready for the next:
First off I went to get some pelvic floor preparation. The things you have to do 😉. I went back to Stephanie in Milltown who I went to after having Josh. She examined me and said nothing is any worse than last time I saw her and just reminded me of the ‘Sniff Flop and Drop’ method that my midwives now talk regularly about. We will also do some perineum preparation on my last appointment in October. You can of course do this yourself but it was not something that I was that comfortable doing first time or this time myself to be honest.
Next up was taken out of my hands this week when my iron levels came back dropped by 3. Normal range is between 11-14. Mine started at 13 and went down to 10. Normally levels drop by 1 in pregnancy, if that and 1 during labour. This had to be addressed and pronto. I was kind of relieved in a way as I knew I was not feeling right at all. No rest was relieving my symptoms, I was eating well but was dizzy, weak and out of breath all the time. I now have to go on a double dose of iron to get my levels back up. I never respond well to iron and have always been sick on it and along with my continued nausea with this pregnancy and the double dose I am not looking forward to what lies ahead but we will see how I go as it has to be done.
Finally I think I will probably have to get my back seen to before baby arrives. My lower back was pretty sore after Josh but not before so I at least want it marginally better than it is now. Ian, my husband has become a dab hand at massage and I have also had a few throughout the last 7.5 months but nothing really relieves it. Heat patches, pillows are all is use and give short term solutions but I have no doubt the odd carrying of Josh/shopping and they way I sit at my desk when I am working all doesn’t help but life must go on so these elements can be tricky at times. I hope to attend a recommended Osteopath and see if she can assist or give some guidance on how to get some relief.
If I had known the above lay ahead I probably would not have jumped at changing my health insurance plan to save a few pennies but again ignorance is bliss. In some ways I think you are better heading into number 1 with this lack of awareness, there is enough to get your head around and if you are lucky enough or choose to go on to have others then you are more aware of what can or cannot crop up. One thing you become fully aware of is that all in all your body is nothing short of incredible for doing all this!