Having had 11 kids here is my advice on all those pregnancy and birth books that down-play and sugar-coat pretty well everything. Here are things they say that are lies, or at the very least, myths, and what I wish someone had told me when I was expecting my first child:
TIREDNESS IN PREGNANCY:
They say you will feel “extra tired”. This is an understatement. You are sooo tired that you can barely keep your eyes open. You can’t get thru the day without a nap. You have such fatigue it’s the extreme kind like when you’re fighting off an illness. The only other times I felt as tired was when I had pneumonia, a liver disorder, and when I was breast feeding, which is also exhausting, even more so than being prego.You are so sleep deprived you know what being a prisoner of war must feel like.This must be what narcolepsy feels like; you always want to nod off.Making a baby is hard work and take alot out of your body!
Morning sickness as they call it is supposed to occur in mornings during the first 12 weeks. For me it wasn’t just in the morning but ALL day,and not on and off either; all day for 12 weeks straight and I wasn’t just queasy,either; I BARFED!
They say your appetite will “increase”. That’s putting it mildly. I was ravenously hungry and had to eat every 2 hours. I would have a TV dinner for a snack.I was always eating and starving-mad hungry all the time.I gained 50 pounds with my first!
You don’t just pee a bit more. I went to the bathroom literally every 10 min. and 3-4 times during the night.Your bladder feels like it’s the size of a pea and it has a watermelon constantly pressing on it. Poor anatomy design plan on God’s part if you ask me. Why couldn’t the bladder be on TOP of the uterus, NOT under it?
They describe labour pains as “discomfort.” Now that’s a laugh! Discomfort is if you stub your toe. Labour is the worst most excruciating pain there is(medical studies have proven it to be the most severe and extreme pain a human can experience) it even hurts more than after surgery.I give my immobilizing headaches a 10/10 and give labour a 12.It was the worst pain I have ever had in my life!! They describe it like “bad period cramps”; that’s like saying you just need an aspirin when your leg’s been cut off. Now very EARLY labour you feel crampy, but when full-blown labour hits you, you will be climbing the walls, screaming in pain,and praying to either be knocked out cold or killed. I drifted to the edge of unconsciousness from the pain. It can be compared to shitting a watermelon, or pulling your lips back over your head, or trying to force a St. Bernard thru a cat door.It feels like a belt with spikes poking inwards being pulled tight around your body, released, tightened again, etc. almost like some sick cosmic torture device.When you’re in heavy labour NO amount of focusing on anything will work. You won’t care less about your focal point when it gets that bad. It helps in the early stages but nothing works later, esp. during transition. Nothing that is except either going into a coma or getting an epidural!
When the baby’s head appears(called “crowning”) they describe the sensation as a “burning.” HA! It feels like a tire iron is ripping your you-know-what open and a blow torch being turned on. That’s the closest description to it. It hurts so bad you howl like a mad animal and I tensed up so much with the pain I almost pushed myself right up over the top of the bed!
After a birth, you will bleed(called “locia”) they compare it to a “heavy period”. Ha, ha, very funny! Mine was more a hemmorage. I had blood clots ranging in size from golf ball size to as big as the baby’s head. When I stood up blood all gushed out and ran down the legs. I soaked thru a pad a minute. This is NOT like any period I’ve ever had,and it lasts 6 weeks, even when breastfeeding. I wish someone had prepared me for how much you really bleed afterwards. It was quite alarming and frightening.When I passed my first clot I thought my insides were falling out.
They make breastfeeding look so natural and “easy.” It is natural, but it’s not “easy”. It took me 2 weeks to get the “hang” of it.It’s not easy to get a baby latched on and to stay latched on in the beginning, esp. when they’re so sleepy and don’t want to eat. You also generally have to feed every 2-3 hours and for the first few months that’s pretty much all you do. My nipples were black and blue, hurt, were scabbed and bleeding and every time the baby latched on tears ran down my face with wincing pain. You also leak like a faucet and soak thru your shirts and end up with big wet circle stains.I struggled with it so much at the beginning I almost gave up.It is also very painful when your boobs are engorged with milk; they are big, hot, tender,heavy, leaking and have prominent veins.Nursing is also very exhausting and makes you very hungry as well.I literally felt like I had the life sucked out of me.