Social media tends to glamorize the postpartum journey with picture-perfect moms and stylized photoshoots but in reality post-partum is far from glamorous. For most, it’s messy hair in need of a wash, sleep deprivation, pain and aches, a squishy belly, and your partner’s t-shirts because nothing else fits. And all this on top of the frustrations of breastfeeding or guilt over formula-feeding, Peri bottles, stool softeners, and a month long of bleeding. For some the journey includes crying over bodies they no longer recognize and inevitable C-section scars, and healing from the trauma of deliveries that did not go according to plan. For some the healing is just as much mental as physical as they battle the baby blues, anxiety or post-partum depression. .
Post-partum is a whirlwind of emotions, sometimes too much to handle, a period of recovery, slowing down, and essentially surviving as you learn to balance the needs of an infant, a traumatized body, and possibly older children. Mothers are resilient but we are also human. Each postpartum journey is unique but exhausting, painful, and even frustrating, lonely, and overwhelming especially if support is insufficient. Pouring from an nearly empty cup to meet the demands of motherhood is not easy. So with ourselves, we need to be patient and forgiving and remember that the days get easier as they pass, and they do pass fast. Lastly, a reminder to take it easy on yourself and your post-partum body; the one that selflessly tore apart to bring into this world, a baby. .
On that note this picture is as real as it get; taken in less than perfect lighting after a night feeding, exhausted but happy, in my husband’s old t-shirt as he does laundry, and after I spent the day in the ER for pushing my recovering body to the point of reopening slightly, my then two week old C-section incision. And yes, I know I just wrote a run-on sentence but a run-on sentence is exactly what motherhood feels like sometimes.This is my post-partum; neither glamorous nor easy but still beautiful.
–Modernday Brown Mom