When you become a mother modesty, for the most part, goes out the figurative window. Not that moms aren't capable of being modest, they definitely are, but when you go through the many physical changes that accompany pregnancy, labor, and delivery (and when you spend the majority of your day tending to the bodily functions of another person), you sort of lose your desire to be "proper." There are conversations that only new moms have and are comfortable with that might completely creep other people out, but to us, conversations revolving around poop and vaginas aren't uncommon at all.
The weird things that happen to your body during pregnancy or labor or birth should really be talked about more. They shouldn't be considered "taboo" or "gross" or something worthy of embarrassment. I mean, we gave someone life. It was weird, sure, but it was also really freakin' amazing. So why are we so afraid to talk about it? Everyone who has been pregnant has experienced her body going rogue and facilitating complete humiliation and/or pain at some point (or many points). Every mother has washed poop out of her hair at some point or pee out of her shirt or both out of her carpet. Even the most "put together" woman will experience an explosive diaper or a sore vagina or a leaky boob. That's just motherhood, my friends.
At a certain point, the gross parts of pregnancy and parenthood become completely normal. The "stigma" the changes a woman's body goes through during pregnancy become void, and even laughable. It's not that new moms have lost their modesty or sense of "social decency," it's just that there's a lot of poop and odd bodily functions in our lives and talking about them make us feel like humans and normal and understood by other moms who know the struggle. Struggles like, well, this:
Post Delivery Battle Scars
Whether you had your baby vaginally or via c-section, there's going to be proof that a human evacuated your body somehow, somewhere. Most people don't like to talk about blood and guts and vaginas, but a new mom needs to talk about it. She needs to understand that her body just went to battle, and it probably didn't come back completely the same, and that's OK. You know you've found your mom friend soulmate when you can talk about icing your vaginas with each other.
The "Did You Poop During Labor?" Conversation
Everyone wants to know the answer, but no one wants to ask the question. The truth of the matter is that, yes, most women poop during labor. It's normal and very common and the medical staff is prepared for it. It will happen and be taken care of so fast that you won't even know that you did it. Sh*t happens, you guys.
The "Oh My God, No One Told Me How Painful My First Bowel Movement Post Birth Was Going To Be" Conversation
This is important information, you guys. No one told me how much my first #2 was going to hurt after I delivered my baby, and I'm still mad about it. That first movement scarred me for life. It hurt more than birth. Yes, really. So, I have made it my life's mission to inform all of my expectant friends that they need to mentally and physically prepare themselves for the first postpartum bowel movement. Seriously, eat lots of fiber, drink lots of water, take lots of stool softeners, and say plenty of prayers. You're welcome.
The "Do Your Boobs Leak, Too?" Conversation
Experiencing my first boob leak was strange and foreign and odd. I mean, no one warned me about it, so when I woke up in a puddle of my own breast milk just one week after having my baby, I was afraid that there was a leak in the ceiling. Nope, just my boobs doing their thing. Apparently it happens to most women who have had babies shortly after giving birth. One of my best friends called me the other day and told me that she was going to start sleeping on garbage bags because she was so tired of having to wash the breast milk out of her sheets. Ah, solidarity feels good, doesn't it?
The "Is Purple Baby Poop Normal?" Conversation
I'm not gong to lie, the first time I witnessed a lavender colored poop in my baby's diaper, I had a freakin' heart attack. "This can't be normal," I thought to myself. Confused, I called a fellow mom friend, who also happens to be a pediatric nurse (one of the handiest mom friends that I have, by the way). She informed me that certain foods (i.e. bananas) can give a baby's poop a lavender tint, of sorts. If I wasn't able to confide in a fellow mother, who just happened to be a nurse, I would have had to fork over a co-pay that, well, I'd rather spend on wine.
The Conversation About Your Lack Of Personal Hygiene
When I was growing up, personal hygiene was extremely important. I would shower at least every day, most often twice a day, because I played sports and was always coming home sweaty or dirty. That all changed after I became a mom. Sometimes I'm not able to even brush my teeth before noon, and if I shower every day, it's pretty much a miracle. I felt so bad about this at first, but when I admitted to some of my friends that I hadn't washed my hair in four days because I hadn't had time, they all chimed in with their own stories of hygienic neglect. I thank the heavens, every day, for dry shampoo and deodorant.
The Conversation When You Admit That You Tasted Your Own Breast Milk, And Felt Perfectly At Ease Admitting It
How could someone feed their baby something that came from their body and not test their product, right? That's like serving a toddler a plate full of asparagus when you've never even tried it yourself. I didn't pour breast milk in my cereal every day or anything, but I did try it when no one was looking. As it turns out, I shouldn't have been so secretive about it, because all of my friends who breastfeed have tried theirs, too. Weird? Yes. Creepy? Sure. Normal? Hopefully. Tasty? Eh. I prefer wine.
Boob Infections, Hemorrhoids, And Episiotomies
You know you're truly best friends with someone when you can talk about things like mastitis (ouch) and hemorrhoids (eww) and episiotomies (again, ouch). I remember buying the cooling pads for my lady bits in a hooded sweatshirt because I was afraid someone was going to see me at the pharmacy. I didn't want my realtor knowing that I had stitches in my vagina, so I executed that purchase with the stealth of Jason Bourne. My embarrassment was unfortunate, because a lot of women dealt with the same pain and discomfort. I am able to talk about it now like it's no big deal, and my friends and I all joke about the many awkward side effects of maternity like it's normal. Because it is.
Conversations Where You Swear You Will Never Have Sex Again
Some women don't like to talk about sex. For a while, I was one of those women. I was raised in the south, in the bible belt, where everyone was definitely having sex, but no one was really talking about it. Eventually, sex talk didn't phase me, but it still made a lot of my friends uncomfortable. However, now that we've all got kids, we let the sex talk fly. I remember telling a friend that I was never letting anything come near my vagina again as long as I lived shortly after having my first son, and I've had friends ask me when they would get to the point of not being terrified to wear blue jeans again. Of course, we all know that none of us committed to our sworn celibacy. After all, I do have two babies.
Conversations When You Admit You're Dying To Have Sex Again
I swore I would never have sex again, like, ever after I had my baby. My sons are 15 months apart, so that means that I got pregnant around the six month postpartum mark. I called my best friend to tell her that I was pregnant already and she just laughed. "I thought you were never having sex again?" she asked. Yeah, you caught me. Turns out, and to my surprise, I wanted to hop back in bed with my husband just a week after my first son was born. My mind was ready, but my body wasn't, and when we finally did get to enjoy ourselves together again, well, you already know what happened then.
The Innumerable Conversations About How Incredibly Gross Kids Are
I can't even begin to count the amount of calls and texts I have sent and received about poop or urine or vomit or vaginas. Kids are gross. They're adorable and amazing and beautiful, but they're also sticky and sometimes smelly and almost always covered in spit up.
My youngest son has projectile vomited into my mouth before. I wanted to cry, but instead I called a friend and went on a rant and had a good laugh about it. Motherhood is weird for sure, but having friends who are also covered in crackers or urine or poop or all of the above, too, makes it so much easier.