The first few days, weeks, and even months after giving birth can be strange. Personally, it took me a while to stop feeling "delicate" and start feeling "normal." With a new life to care for, being postpartum is an incredibly challenging, exhausting, and overwhelming. It also looks different for different people, so I asked a few moms to describe what recovering from childbirth is actually like. While stories varied and every person truly does react to labor, delivery, and postpartum life differently, listening to a wide variety of experiences can help any soon-to-be mom get a clearer picture of what's in store for her.
My most surprising physical change post-childbirth was the sheer size of my feet. The effects of the IV drip and all that extra fluid my body took on during pregnancy and labor needed, and was apparently looking for, a place to settle. Where did that fluid end up calling home? My feet, engorging them both to comical proportions. They throbbed, they were painful, and needed to be elevated for a few days before they returned to their regular size. That's to say nothing, mind you, of the emotional changes I experienced after childbirth, too.
In other words, while your definition of "normal" is sure to change after you bring a baby into the world, whatever "normal" becomes will take a while to get used to. Motherhood is just the best, right? If you're about to be a mom and wondering what post-baby life will be like, here's just a few mothers who have been there, done that, and can give you some insight into what recovering from childbirth is actually like: