Interviewing Megan: Postpartum Preparation
Well our co-founder Megan is a few weeks due to give birth to her second baby! If you haven't caught up, check out her magical AF gender reveal during this pandemic with her growing family!
We wanted to share Megan's perspective on preparing for her second postpartum experience through an interview! We've got a lot to learn from her confident preparedness as she goes boldly into new motherhood!
"How has this pregnancy been for you?"
Megan: "Very different from my first. Obviously I’ve been home A LOT so I started nesting very early on and felt very confident in what I needed (and didn’t need). But I’ve also felt more distracted than I did with my first pregnancy. The demands in my life are higher now and navigating a global pandemic while pregnant has been stressful. Physically it’s been more challenging as well, mostly due to pre-pregnancy back issues. Let’s just say I’m excited she’s almost here!"
"When you reflect back on your first experience as a newborn mother, what's your first reaction?"
Megan: "It’s a totally mixed bag of emotions and experiences. Breastfeeding was a huge struggle for me - more than I expected it to be - and that came with some heartbreak. I also think back on the sleep deprivation (and I’m a sleeper!) and how that was so jarring for my body. Other reflections are incredibly joyful and peaceful. I unexpectedly found a new level of contentment in my life just being with my son."
"What will you prepare for differently than with your first birth?"
Megan: "Identifying and addressing problems! It’s in my nature to “power through” hard situations, occasionally to my own detriment. This led me very astray in my first few months postpartum with my son. It ultimately severely shortened our breastfeeding timeline and I regret not seeking professional help when it first started going sideways. This time I have resources identified and queued up, should I need them. I will also be taking my stool softeners and drinking TONS more water because bathroom-ing post-birth was shockingly painful. (That might be TMI but mommas need to know!)"
"What will you maintain from your last experience postpartum for this one?"
Megan: "Physically I healed well and was active fairly quickly. I hope to replicate that and take lots of walks. I remember getting outside and walking helped me feel well, both physically and mentally."
"How do you feel about the products you are given at the hospital?"
Megan: "They are just that - hospital variety. I took all the PP supplies home but luckily I had friends and an older sister who stocked me up on the more comfortable versions. I did wear the disposable underwear for a day or two, but I didn’t love it and transitioned to my regular underwear when I could."
"Is there a brand you prefer or are excited to try for any particular postpartum needs?"
Megan: "I used a lot of Tuck’s cooling pads which were great. I’ve since become a lot more picky about pads so I’m planning to use RAEL’s organic cotton pads this time. As for postpartum underwear, instead of relying on the hospital’s I’m planning to try out those made by Frida Mom."
"How do you make the time to focus on a 4th trimester plan with everything else going on?"
Megan: "As a second time mom the postpartum experience was in my conscience throughout my pregnancy. I started discussing the care plan with my husband early on. I also thought about it a lot more when creating my list of baby items. For example, one of the first things I researched was a bedside bassinet that attaches to your bed for easy night time breastfeeding as I wanted to seek out ways to improve the experience."
"Would you mind sharing what your plan is?"
Megan: "One of the main aspects of my plan is my mother! She’s retired since my first pregnancy and will come stay for a few weeks. She’ll be able to help with my son, meals, laundry and just being another set of hands to take the baby when I need a break. I’m so grateful! I’ve also identified Pebble Parents as a great 100% virtual resource (because, COVID) to address any questions or concerns that might arise with lactation, mental health, etc."
"How do you think this plan will support your recovery?"
Megan: "With my last pregnancy my son’s pediatrician (who I’ve since fired) was the healthcare professional I saw most frequently postpartum. Their advice ultimately steered me and my baby wrong. This time I have a stronger network and a stronger set of instincts that will support my recovery. I feel so much more confident in saying “this isn’t right” or simply answering “yes” when someone offers to help. And of course if all else fails, I’ll have my mom. :)"
"If there's a message you could share with every expecting mother, what would it be?"
Megan: "If you’re in pain, say something. If you’re trying everything and not getting the answers you need, find someone else to consult. Seeking help doesn’t mean you’re a less capable mother. We aren’t meant to do this alone!"