When you carry a baby you spend 9 months (technically 10) going through huge bodily changes. You get bigger obviously but you also get hungrier, you find it hard to manoeuvre and if you are anything like me by the last month you can't wait to have your body back.
The baby then arrives and you have the joy of imagining you will go back to normal strait away. There is however a thing called the "fourth trimester". This is the trimester where your body slowly goes back to normal and you experience a whole different set of challenges both physically & mentally. So here is some guidance to the FOURTH TRIMESTER!
Whilst breastfeeding you feel like Pamela Anderson. Not only are your boobs huge but they stay firmly in one place and make you look like a page 3 model. But when you STOP breastfeeding they deflate down to empty sacks that take the laws of gravity to a whole new level. Your new boobs don't even fill your pre pregnancy bras. Have a baby and be sure that you will DROP a bra size with each one. This in turn allows you to see what your whole body looks like postpartum.
Your tummy and hips change shape. No matter how much weight you lose somehow your hips stay the same width as they were when carrying baby. After baby number 2 your belly button stays a bit wrinkled and everything wobbles just that bit more.
You will sweat out your body weight in fluid during the night. You will wake up to feed your baby feeling like you have been standing under a cold shower for half an hour. Your clothes, sheets and possibly your husband will also be soaked through. Have towels and ALLOT of pyjamas on standby for these few weeks.
You will desperately try to squeeze into your pre pregnancy jeans every week. Sometimes they will fit but you walk around the house feeling like you are wearing a victorian corset with your muffin top hanging over the side. You will continue trying to bear the pain for an hour or so before deciding that your maternity jeans are more comfy and you will stay in them for another week.
You know that you WANT to lose your baby weight but somehow the lack of sleep you are experiencing gives you a free ticket to eat everything and anything in sight at any time of the day or night. If you don't have time for lunch then a coffee and a cream cake suddenly seems perfectly acceptable and can sometimes even make you feel quite good because you "skipped" a meal.
You will convince yourself that you are still pregnant and there is a secret twin hiding in there. You will be going about your evening whilst guzzling wine and stuffing chocolates into your face when you suddenly feel a kick. A proper baby kick. It will firstly make you panic that there is another one in there before suddenly giving you a pang that there actually isn't. It's funny how you spend allot of the thrid trimester wanting baby out and then your body plays a trick on you and you will suddenly miss it.
It's safe to say that during the fourth trimester you will try and fail to feel back to your pre pregnancy self quicker than you should. But I'm learning that's ok. We learn allot about ourselves in the years leading up to having a baby. We experience new things whilst being pregnant and we owe ourselves time after the baby is born to learn, change and adjust. Your body WILL change. After you all you have just grown, carried and ejected a whole human. Our bodies are amazing and they are all allowed time to get back to normal at their own pace.