The Unexpected

I’m not 100% sure why women without children hear “what to expect” and are still shocked.  Some of it I maybe forgot.  Some of it seemed a little incredulous.  And I’m not gonna lie…sometimes I thought, maybe that won’t happen to me.

**Keep checking back to this page as I will be adding to the list as I experience them or am haunted by a flashback.

1. You will pee yourself after you have a baby.  I’m not talking about during birth.  There’s a lot of unexpecteds that I could cover in that department.  I’m talking within the postpartum weeks. (Or longer for some women, I’m sure.  I can only cover the first 7 weeks.)  It’s only happened twice for me…so far.  The first time I was physically in the bathroom with no sense of urgency.  That was unexpected.  The second time was a big sneeze and less unexpected.  (Note to self…Kegels!)

2. Your husband is super impressed with that magic trick you did, making a baby appear out of your vagina. But you can only work your stardom for so long.  Then one Saturday morning he’s not taking the baby from you so you can sleep a little more.  Or all of a sudden he’s annoyed with you for a bitchy comment and you’re all, hey, remember that time…

Just an example.

3. STRETCHMARKS.  Ya, ya, everyone TALKS about having them but I’ve seriously never seen anyone with them.  I mean, I know why people are hiding them, but who is hiding them?  Is there a secret club of people riddled with stretchmarks or do we not share that EVER?  And celebrities.  I mean, I know they have People who do their hair, makeup, cook them skinny meals, and train their bodies to morph into something unobtainable, but did not ONE celebrity get stretchmarks??  Your People couldn’t possibly take away your stretchmarks, could they?

Which leads me to…

4. Mourning Bikinis.  I know some moms with rockin’ bodies who can pull off a bikini and some better than they did pre-baby.  {sigh} I guess I always thought I’d be that mom.  I’m doomed to tankinis now until the celebrities confess their stretchmark-clearing secrets.  I feel robbed of my bikini wearing days and was not expecting that.  I guess I thought that when I made the tankini choice it would be because I had talked myself into wearing a more mature option.  It would be a conscious choice.  My choice was taken from me by stretchmarks!!  {grumble, mumble…damn stretchmarks.}

5. My baby boy is the biggest flirt ever at 7 weeks old! I didn’t know he would bat his eyelashes, arch his eyebrows and coo at me when he was only weeks old!  Watch out ladies, this boy’s moves are only going to get better.  Total heartbreaker.

6. My wedding rings still don’t fit after two months.  I’m still hopeful and willing to give it a couple more months before I have the rings resized, but I miss them!  I thought a couple of outrageous CZ rings from Dillards and TjMaxx would help but it’s just not the same.

7. (For some of you) The milk:

-will painfully engorge your breasts so that you either need to pump NOW or get that baby eating NOW. I even made up a spontaneous sing-song for Liam that cheerfully told him to eat or mommy would need to leave him to pump-a-rump-lump. Or something like that.

-My lymphnodes in my armpits swelled up from overactive milk ducts.

-I also stopped growing armpit hair for almost two months.

-Liam chokes and splutters on the milk because there is so much and it comes out so fast. And then when he has to let go to cough he gets violently sprayed with milk all over his face. Poor baby. First time that happened I was so surprised I started laughing…until he started screaming because he had choked on milk and now it was squirting him in the eye. Then I started keeping an extra receiving blanket nearby so that I could cover the milk flow if he popped off to choke.

-Hot showers make your milk let down, so you may see milk spraying out all over the shower.

-I didn’t try the cabbage leaves for engorgement because I was afraid that it would let the milk down and there would be massive flooding throughout the tri-state area.

-I did consider bottling up the extra milk to send to, say, Africa, or some third-world country where young and old could live contentedly on my breastmilk for the rest of their lives.

-The GOOD news (I mean, besides the fact that my body is more than capable of producing the food my baby needs) is that it has now been about 2 ½ months and the milk is slowing down. Hallelujah, I don’t have clogged ducts of milk popping out every couple of hours.

8. Two words.  Internal hemorrhoids.  But I don’t want to talk about it right now.

9. Sleep?  What’s Sleep?

Everyone says, “You’d better get sleep now, before the baby comes!”  We laugh appreciatively and ignorantly, making sleep promises we don’t fulfill.  Why don’t they grab us by the shoulders, stare meaningfully into our eyes and tell us that it will be like pulling 3 consecutive years of all-nighters in college, but as a 90-year old.  They should tell you that infant-induced sleep deprivation needs its own warning label:

May cause headaches, dark eye circles and behavior considered vengeful, murderous and sometimes toddler-like.  Do not operate heavy machinery while on Infant Sleep Deprivation.  If symptoms worsen…too bad, there is no way to counter the effects of Infant Sleep Deprivation.

Then they should slap you across the face.  Twice.

That might actually get the message across to those blissfully ignorant, pregnant couples.  Who are staying up way too late.  And getting up way too early.

**On a related note: 

10. I did not expect to be so tired I would fall asleep while nursing and Twittering at the same time.

Which also resulted in my accidentally “following” an ex-boyfriend that I was stalking during a late-night nursing session.  Someone with whom I actually hadn’t had any communication with in several years.  Awkward.  (Don’t judge, you know you Social Network Stalk too.  And he has funny tweets!)  I went ahead and “unfollowed” him as soon as I woke up and saw where my finger had landed on the iPhone, yet knew full well that whenever someone follows you there is an email sent.  I broke into a sweat and prayed that he wouldn’t recognize my married name…and my profile picture.

12 thoughts on “The Unexpected

  1. OMG. The tankini! I’ve deemed this Summer of the Tankini. And then I say I have to go buy some lightly colored denim elastic-waisted mom capris too. Although my tankini is not from stretch marks…it’s from these 10lbs that won’t. go. away.
    My cousin told me of good stretch mark lotion…she SWEARS it made hers lighten!

  2. I have stretchmarks, so you may join my club. I didn’t wear a bikini before, but i definitely won’t now.
    Just now, about 12 months later, they are lighter. BUT, not to depress you, my mom’s response to my complaining about them was ” I still have them”. that did not make me feel better!
    From what i’ve heard, and spoken to my doctor about, stretch marks are because of your skin type, and so you can thank your mom, because most likely she had (has) them too!

    • My mom said, “They will fade, you won’t see them.” I’m assuming that takes about 30 years. Someone else’s mom said they are less noticeable when your stomach tightens up again. I should just do a stretchmark post asking for all things we’ve heard and if it truly happened for anyone.

      • I have stretchmarks everywhere! When I was pregnant with Ava, I was about 7 or 8 months and still had none, so I was psyched because I thought that if I didn’t have them by then, I wouldn’t get them! All of a sudden, one day I had one and then they just multiplied by the dozens it seemed like! But I remember them postpartum…they were really dark, like purplish! I freaked out a little (okay, a lot) and my mom assured me that they would fade in time. And they did until I got pregnant again. I think it must have something to do with the amount of blood pumping through your body or something. But now, they are very faint…still there, but much better! So hang in there Katie, they will get better as time goes on! I think they really started fading when I finished nursing…

        • That is what happened to me, Jen…not a mark until right before Liam’s due date and then in the 2 weeks he was overdue my belly exploded. Your story seems promising though!

  3. Stretch marks do fade, but it takes time. (NOT 3o years!) Mine are nearly the same color as my skin, and I do wear a bikini, even though technically that leaves my stretch marks exposed. I just stopped seeing them – not sure if that’s because they’re faded, or because I’m blinded by my own desperation.

  4. Another stretchmark casualty here. I had my prego photos done at 30 weeks and didn’t have a single one. Then, on that very day I noticed a little tiny purple mark and it was all over at that point. I tried to count them, but I stopped at 28.

    I have 2 patches of them, one on each side of my lower belly. To me, they kind of look like they could have been made by tiger claws. I think of that each time I look at them, and it reminds me of the fierce mama I was during labor, and then I don’t feel so bad about them. :) (And btw, mine have totally faded and my son is 15 months old today. But they’re still pretty noticeable. Oh well.)

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