For me, the newborn months were marked by sleep deprivation, snuggles, and spending time on the internet when I probably should have been sleeping. I mean, what else is a tired mom to do when she's feeding a baby several times a night? Unfortunately, it turned out that trying to navigate the internet on very little sleep was a pretty bad idea. There are so many bad decisions I made online when I was postpartum, tired, depressed, and kind of a little bored.
Many of my mistakes are, not surprisingly, related to online shopping. I bought baby items we didn't need, skin care products to help with pregnancy spots and stretch marks, and even some really bizarre and random things when I fell asleep on my phone. Fortunately for me, the kind folks at Target and Amazon were pretty helpful when it came to making returns.
Other bad online mistakes included posting way too much information and somehow forgetting that literally no one wants to see pictures of my baby's poop or diaper rash or wants to hear about my bleeding nipples or infected incision. And, if they do, that's sort of creepy and probably not a conversation I want to facilitate. Apparently sleep deprivation seriously impacted my brain's ability to sort information into appropriate categories like, "things I want my co-workers to know about," and "things that not even my husband wants to know," resulting in some pretty gross posts. Then there were the online debates, you guys. Hormonal, postpartum me definitely shouldn't get into online debates. Ever.
So if you're postpartum, sleep-deprived, still healing from childbirth, and staring at your phone and/or computer like it's your saving grace, just stop. Take it from me, and the following mistakes I made postpartum: you do not want to go there. Nope.
I Accidentally Bought Things In My Sleep
One day during my maternity leave, I received some random (and personal) items in the mail. I asked my husband if he had ordered them, only to discover that it was actually me. Apparently I had accidentally ordered some pretty bizarre things (mostly incontinence products), when I fell asleep on my phone and while researching options to help with postpartum peeing. Whoops. On the bright side, I now have tons of things to try that I probably wouldn't have purchased while conscious.
I Bought Yet Another Baby Carrier
I already had nine baby carriers (yep, nine) by the time my last and final baby was born. In other words, certainly didn't need to go and buy another. Try telling my sleep deprived brain that, though. I bought two more baby carriers right after my baby was born. Now, I've promised my husband that I won't buy more without selling the ones I am not using, (unless I can score a great deal, that is).
I Bought Way More Cloth Diapers Than We'll Ever Use
Cloth diapers are so darn cute and can be so addictive. I think I may have clicked through every cloth diaper ad that came on my Facebook feed, which only made more appear. I even joined a co-op for more great deals. I so don't need any more, but I can't help myself. Besides, they were like 500 percent off.
I Joined Several Online Makeup Groups
There's nothing like talking about makeup with other people who love makeup to make you want to buy all the lipsticks you see. All of them. I have no idea where or when I will actually wear most of it. I mean my baby doesn't care if I have all of the shades of red lipstick on the planet, but I had to have them.
I Signed Up For A Weight Loss Contest
If you think signing up for an online weight loss contest, especially when you're a few weeks postpartum and feel terrible about yourself and your postpartum body, is a horrible idea, you are so right. That didn't stop me from signing up for one, though. One where I had to take a picture of myself on a scale and post it online every week. I have no idea what I was thinking.
I Registered For A Race
Ironically, I registered for long distance races during my last two maternity leaves. You would think I would have learned my lesson the first time, but no. Instead, I registered for a race without knowing if I will be able to run. It's a good thing that it's transferable, in case I am not ready.
I Posted Way Too Much Information
Repeat after me: nobody wants to see your baby's poop. Nobody. Do not post pictures of it online. The same goes for rashes, incision site infections, and bleeding nipples. (I'm so ashamed).
I Accepted Sketchy Message Requests
I normally am so cautious about accepting friend and message requests online. Apparently, the sleep deprived version of me throws caution to the wind in this regard, because I've now read and seen some things I can't unread or unsee. Ewww.
I Researched My Symptoms
Never page Dr. Google when you feel sick or you think there's something wrong with you. Your internet search will most likely not result in an accurate diagnosis and, as a result, you'll end up losing even more sleep because you think you're dying. Trust me. I've done it so many times, especially when I was postpartum. The right thing to do is to wait and call your doctor in the morning, or head to the emergency room if it's something serious. Either way, just let professionals diagnose you and not, you know, the internet.
I Engaged In Political Debates
I normally love online debates, but between no sleep and postpartum hormones, it was not a good idea for me to fight with strangers on the internet, especially about things related to our current national dumpster fire of a political climate. That didn't stop me, of course. I cried at the slightest offense, and "rage quit" so many online groups when I was postpartum.