Blame it on hormones. Blame it on wishful thinking. But many pregnant women suffer major delusions of grandeur when they imagine what they’ll look and feel like walking out of the hospital, toting their newborns. Time for a reality check: You won’t be wearing your pre-pregnancy jeans and strappy stilettos. A woman who has just delivered a baby may still look about five months pregnant despite the fact that she’s carrying her newborn in her arms, instead of in her womb.
While you may be elated that you’ve got this adorable, 7-pound little bundle to take home and that your pregnancy is finally over, the temporary aches and pains of new motherhood are just beginning. You’re sore from the delivery, your breasts are starting to swell, your uterus is cramping, and you may be experiencing some of the other “joys” of new motherhood—mainly constipation, incontinence, hemorrhoids, and hair loss.
Here’s a little more detail for the uninitiated. And just remember: it doesn’t last forever!