So for two very different reasons, I ended having both my daughters by C-Section. Second time around, I remembered the importance of having a single thing to master in the first few days. So for me, this was my ‘major milestone’ list – bar the obvious, getting to know my new daughter!
Day 1: Shower & pee
I had both C-Sections in the early afternoon, which I count as Day 0. That meant that Day 1 started in the morning in hospital with the catheter being removed and the invitation to have a shower. While I felt that my legs were not going to work properly, and my organs were all going to fall out the minute I got off the bed, I accepted the invite, both times. I won’t lie, it felt weird while in the shower, but amazing afterwards. One of the best showers I’ve ever had!
The other thing that I focused on for Day 1 was peeing. I had a big priority the second time around which was to get all the IVs and drips out of me by the time Daughter 1 arrived later that day. I just wanted to look as normal as possible. When I enquired about this, I was told that if I peed three times that day and all looked well (yup, it’s another part of the glamorous life of childbirth – folk have to check what your wee looks like) then all the tubes in my hands could be removed. It was a great target – and I achieved it, after a lot of water drinking. Another nervous moment when you sit on the loo for the first time but all went well!
Day 2: Poop
Well, if Day 1 was wee…. This was inevitable!
From the start of my hospital stay, I did try to opt for prune juice and wholewheat options with my menu choices, as I had heard that constipation after birth is very common. Day 2 was all about those choices helping the inevitable movement that needed to happen. Another nervous moment but delighted to report that internal organs still stayed where they were!
Day 3: Stuff for the rest of your stay
Both times for me, this was the key day. This was the moment when I feel come up for a little bit of air (just a little now!). That meant, I could look at the stuff I had with me in hospital, organize what needed to go home at this stage (dirty laundry, lovely gifts etc) and what else I needed to be brought from home (more wipes, nappies, more big giant pants, fresh clothes). What can I say, I’m an organizer!
Day 4: Get dressed
The second time around, I felt this massive urge to get out of pajamas and to sit in a chair rather than lie on a bed. Now, just to be clear, I’m talking about getting into my maternity leggings and a nursing top, which looked very like my pajamas! It was just more about the act of having a shower and getting into fresh ‘day’ clothes rather than my pajamas that I was sleeping in. It also meant that in the evening, there was a simple moment of ‘getting ready for bed’ and knowing that the night shift was starting. I enjoyed it – and it also felt that I was getting ready to hit the outside world soon.
Day 5: Names of your nurses
Up, washed, dressed, bags packed and baby ready to get out there and go be a baby at our home. On Day 5, my most important task (bar getting out of the hospital) was to take down the names of my nurses so I could drop them a quick note of thanks when I got home. Both times, there were two nurses that I really related to and was so grateful to for the advice and support they gave me during my hospital stay. I’ve always loved getting a hand written note, and so enjoyed writing those cards at home to say thanks to those fabulous nurses who helped me get through those five days, twice!