I've heard too many stories from friends and family about doing too much too soon after having a baby. When one does too much too soon, recovery is much slower. Bleeding increases. Fatigue sets in, more than just the waking up throughout the night and constant taking care of the baby. Labor is not easy on the body and the body has to adjust. It takes more time with C-sections. I am so grateful for all the tips from friends and family, and my doula! I really took them to heart because I wanted to give my body the rest and time it needed. Here are the tips that I was told:
1. During the first 2 weeks, don't cook, clean, or do much of anything except care for yourself and the baby. It can decrease your chance of getting post-partum depression!
2. Sleep when the baby sleeps.
3. Have a support system. It may be your mother, your husband, kids who are old enough...
4. When you feel up to it, go on walks.
5. Listen to your body.
I did this... all of it! The first two weeks, I sat in bed, fed my baby, took showers, posted pics of the baby on facebook, changed diapers, and slept. I slept and cuddled with my baby. My husband was amazing! He took over despite school and finals. He cooked me meals, cleaned the house, did the laundry, and helped with the baby. He made sure I was resting. This support from him made such a difference and I love him for it. It felt RIGHT to not do anything. I am one who always is doing something. I literally stopped everything and did not even do my energy work. It felt so good to have a break form it all and focus on the baby and myself. I did not even have a desire to workout. I went to the gym until the day I delivered the baby and worked out throughout the pregnancy. In short, I really loved having that rest. It was not until the end of the 2 weeks that I started to feel restless. Then I started walking. My mom came the 3rd week and she helped out around the house and with meals so Creighton could have a break and she could meet her new grandbaby. She helped with the cleaning, the laundry, watching the baby, and helping me get the things we needed. We went on daily walks and went to the beach. I started doing some cleaning and cooking myself. After she left, I felt like I could do more cooking and cleaning and started working again. And now I am just past the 5 week mark and I am feeling great. In a nutshell, when someone tells you to sleep when the baby sleep and rest... do it! Its worth it in the long run.