This post is in partner with Kindred Bravely. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Please visit my disclaimer page for more information.
You just had a baby… now what?! You’re in for the fourth trimester! What exactly is that? It’s where you get to take care of this tiny creature that you grew for nine months and yourself. The body that just birthed a human being is beginning to change. You’re bleeding, sore, tired and just wait til your milk comes in. You’ve got a boob job that you didn’t ask for that any other time you’d be amazed by but now they are hard as rocks and leaking milk 24/7. All those extra hormones make you sweaty and oily but WOW, it’s amazing what the human body is doing!
side note: I didn’t share any of that above to complain. I’m thankful I get to birth a baby but I’m just being real about what happens after so you can adequately prepare. Because you NEED to prepare. There isn’t much you need during this time but a whole lotta support from your significant other, family and friends and a few necessities. After I had my first LO I was not prepared and really had a harder time trying to figure out life postpartum.
- Adult diapers + maxi pads – After you birth a baby you bleed. It’s just what happens. Hopefully, staying off your feet as much as possible will help your bleeding end sooner than later but until it does you definitely need something to keep from getting it everywhere. I tried just using the maxi pads after my first birth and I would somehow get blood everywhere and had to continuously change my underwear and pants and bed sheets. The next go around, I was told about adult diapers and I haven’t ever been more excited to wear one! Adult diapers are so much easier to change out and feel comfortable in just sticking a thick maxi pad into your underwear. I haven’t found a non toxic brand of adult diapers yet but layering the bottom with thick overnight maxi pads that are non toxic are my solution. I recently discovered the brand Honey Pots and love them. They are infused with essential oils and can help the process of healing postpartum. Just trust me and try the diaper… you won’t regret it. Also grab a few puppy pads from Target to lay under you when you’re in bed just in case you leak.
- Comfortable pajamas – Having something soft, comfortable and a little stylish to put on during your first week postpartum is one item that is very important to me. Not for any other reason but to help with my mental state as I am confined to the house and still receiving visitors to see the baby. Lack of sleep, wearing a diaper, my milk coming in all makes me look and feel ragged but I can look a little more put together when I have on a cute set of pajamas like these from Kindred Bravely. I’ve gotten so many compliments on these when people have come by to drop off food and they are silky soft so I feel like I’m wearing butter. Nothing better than a good compliment to help you feel good about yourself postpartum. Most people come to see the baby and just slipping into a stylish pair of pjs can do wonders on your self esteem.
- Heating pad + medicine for cramping – What most people won’t tell you and was a HUGE shocker for me after I had my first baby is the cramping that comes during nursing sessions. The cramps known as afterbirth pains, or simply afterpains, are caused by contractions of your uterus as it returns to its prepregnancy size after you have your baby. Cramping will be most intense for the first day or two after giving birth, but it should taper off around the third day. With each baby you have, the cramping is more and more intense. After I had Mercy I remember almost doubling over because the cramping hurt so badly. Because of this, I recommend having a heating pad on stand by to put on your belly! (It really does help) and then getting yourself some Arnica and Cramping Bark. These are both holistic medicines that help lessen the pain and won’t bother your breast milk. Trust me, you’ll need something so grab both of those just in case.
- maternity nursing bra + breast pads – When your milk comes in, get ready for a whole new set of boobs that you didn’t know you could have. I mean, I couldn’t believe how big my boobs swell up after my milk comes in. A lot of times it’s super painful too! I suggest not wearing a bra for the first day or two and then once your milk comes in wearing a very loose fitting nursing bra so you can stuff them with breast pads. My milk coming in makes my boobs so heavy and hard as rocks so having some support is much appreciated. I love these maternity bras but I’ve also linked a cheaper brand that I love as well. Not only will your boobs fill with milk, they will also leak with milk. No one wants to get up and change their clothing at 3am so breast pads are a must. I love these reusable ones because I can throw them in the washing machine and have clean ones the next day. With as many diapers and wipes as we are going through, saving on breast pads helps me feel like I’m doing something extra with my life, haha!
- charcoal bar – Another crazy thing that your body does after birth is it begins a natural detoxing process of all the extra estrogen and hormones you’ve accumulated over your pregnancy. This means hot flashes, night sweats, acne and lots of extra oil. I mean I couldn’t believe how much oilier my skin got within one day postpartum. Because of this, I rely heavily on my charcoal skincare products from Beautycounter. The charcoal bar is one that I use daily to cleanse and help detox my pores and extra oil. That one bar also lasts me about 6 months if I can keep it in a dry place in between uses. I have even washed my hair with it postpartum because my hair was super oily and it really did help! Take the bar and lather it up really well to wash your face, hair, and under arms. TRUST me, it will help!
- big cup of water – shewwww, the amount of water I was drinking while pregnant has NOTHING on the amount I drink now. I am like a camel searching for water in the desert. I cannot get enough. Staying hydrated is so important while nursing and can really effect your breast milk supply. For this reason, I keep a huge Healthy Human tumbler next to my bed filled with ice cold filtered water. You can read more about what filter I use by clicking here. Keeping my cup full helps me make sure that I drink enough throughout the day since I am nursing Mercy and Vivi right now.
I hope these tips will help you as they have helped me postpartum. If you have any questions about what happens postpartum or want anymore tips please feel free to reach out to me.