I’m one of those women who enjoyed an easy pregnancy and loved giving birth, hard as it was– I look back on the time of becoming a new mother nostalgically. However, I was really thrown by the “recovery period.” Luckily there was a very compelling baby to distract me from my aches and ‘roids. But from time-to-time I felt just solidly wiped by the whole ordeal.
I don’t want to freak anyone out– some women honestly don’t find recovery all that bad–but I do want to share my tips for making those sore parts a little less sore and just generally getting through the transition.
I’ve had two kids and both times all of these products (books, butt salves and bras) were recruited:
Postpartum Recovery Essentials Bundle from Earth Mama Angel Baby 1 of 8
I loved that I had this whole kit ready to go when I needed it. And that these products have been thoughtfully put together by a great company that makes organic products for mothers and babies. The Mama Bottom Balm is great-- who knows what's in it, but it works. The tea is good for helping the uterus shrink back to it's former, much smaller size. I loved this kit.
Buy the Recovery Bundle or other Earth Mama products here.
Stool Softeners 2 of 8
After pushing a baby out, I never wanted to push anything out again. Ever. These stool softeners make it possible to move beyond such fears. (Colace stool softeners are given out at the hospital but you can also get them at the drug store.)
Anita Nursing Bra 3 of 8
Anita is one of the best brands for nursing bras. They are high-end but they also LAST and they are super, super comfortable (nice material, full coverage, wide straps, etc, etc.) It's probably a good idea to buy a more expensive bra like this once you know what size you'll need. Most women go up a couple of sizes. I went up 3 sizes from pre-pregnancy and about 1-2 sizes up from pregnancy.
Buy an Anita Nursing Bra here.
Boob Nursing Tops 4 of 8
The Swedes are so reliable when it comes to design-- the maternity and nursing clothing line, Boob, makes clothes with a nice weight to them-- they're not flimsy cotton revealing every odd bulge, rather they're 95% organic cotton with 5% lycra for the stretch you'll need. The tunic style is perfect for hugging/flattering your belly as it regains a pre-pregnancy shape. There's a flap on the top that you pull up to nurse discreetly. Very stylish. I wore my black tunic (similar to this) for many months postpartum.
See more Boob clothes here.
Medela Pump In-Style 5 of 8
Many women don't need to pump in the immediate days or weeks following birth but sometimes there's a reason to do it. I had an over-supply of milk that made it quite painful when the milk came in. Although pumping can make the problem worse (the more milk you take out, the more your body makes), I had to use the pump a couple of times in that first week to relieve the intense pressure. It was a lifesaver. And then when I went back to work some months later, I used it again. And again...
The Medela Pump In-Style has a good reputation; I'm a fan.
Learn more about Medela products here.
Soup 6 of 8
Across cultures and time, soup has been a tradition for women in the first 30 days postpartum. It's nourishing and hydrating and easy on your system. I packed my freezer with homemade soups--enough for weeks.
Seltzer! 7 of 8
This is here for all of you women who *forget* to drink water. I am one of those women. I need either a water "product" or at least fizzy water to get myself to remember to drink it AND it's so crucial to drink lots of water when you're nursing. I was constantly parched and very happy with endless bottles of fizzy water.
For the eco-friendly alternative to cases of bottles, check out this SodaStream.
image-1135 8 of 8
I'm among many millions who swear by this book. It's super simple and seems gimmicky but it's incredibly smart and helpful to new parents trying to understand how to soothe a newborn. The basic concept is that there's a fourth trimester during which the baby will appreciate conditions that mimic the womb-- a swaying, warm, enclosed space near mom's heart.
Buy The Happiest Baby On The Block here.