There are few times in a mom's life when privacy is as non-existent as when she's postpartum. Not only do you have a roomful of people gazing at your lady parts (if you delivered vaginally, and sometimes of you had a c-section, too), but after the baby arrives you're continually poked and prodded. Sometimes the best thing us moms can do to deal with postpartum life is just laugh, because the alternative is crying, and we probably did enough of that during our respective pregnancies. Thankfully, there are certain postpartum moments that prove you can laugh your way through anything.
I've given birth both surgically and vaginally, and the postpartum recoveries were dramatically different for reach. After my vaginal birth, I wanted to crawl in a hole so people would stop checking out my undercarriage. If I had a shred of dignity after labor and delivery, the first time the nurse checked me for hemorrhoids it was gone. I'm about the most self-conscious person in the world, too, so this was definitely a special kind of hell for me. If you've never wondered how your bulging butt veins compare to other women's bulging butt veins, you just haven't lived.
So, in the interest of being real and transparent, here's a list of the worst parts of postpartum life you just can't help but laugh your way through. If you can get through the following with a sincere smile in your face, parenthood will be a walk in the proverbial park. I promise.
Your Undeniable Love For Mesh Panties
You may have heard stories about the giant mesh underwear supplied by the hospital, only to think something along the lines of, "Hard pass." But when it came time to put up or shut up, you put them on and asked for more. The giant pads you thought were surely overkill (but definitely weren't), wouldn't fit in even your biggest period panties. In other words, those mesh giants were a godsend (and worth you sneaking a few more pairs into your hospital bag before you left).
Your Need To Ice Your Vulva
Most people have never had to ice their vulva until they've experienced the miracle of birth, and then you're quick to get over your modesty and beg for anything that will make your battered and torn ladyhood feel remotely normal again.
Your Inevitable Hemorrhoid Check
If you've never had someone inspect your butt hole for protrusions, hold on to your horses. There is nothing quite as humiliating as this, which is saying something considering everything you go through during labor, delivery, and recovery. If there was a shred of dignity left, it disappears as soon as you process what your nurse actually meant when she said, "Roll over and let me check you."
Your First Meconium Diaper Change
Nothing can prepare you for meconium, except meconium. You never expect something quite so foul to come out of your baby, but there it is; undeniable proof that the grossest things can come out of the cutest beings.
Best to laugh so you don't just cry, my friends.
Your First Postpartum Poop
Baby's first poop was bad, but yours? Yeah, yours is the worst. The first postpartum poop is the stuff nightmares are made of, and the buildup, the anticipation, the anxiety leading up to it? Terror.
Your First Time Alone With The Baby
Your partner left for work, your family left for home, and you're all alone with a newborn who is completely and totally dependent on you. Nothing prepares you for that moment.
Your First Postpartum Sneeze
The first time you sneeze after you've had a baby, you'll probably pee, too. It's ridiculous, you guys. Ridiculous and annoying. Thanks, Nature.
Your Dance With The Umbilical Chord
You may know, in theory, that your baby goes home with part of the umbilical cord still attached. However, you don't necessarily realize exactly what that means until you're in the thick of it. Keeping it from catching on things, making sure it's not getting infected, and wondering why after all these years of medical progress there isn't a better way than to let it shrivel up like a piece of jerky, becomes your new "normal."
Your Constant, Walking Farts
Step, fart. Step, fart. Step, fart. It's ridiculous. You have to laugh because not only are farts funny, but at this point in your degradation even your farts are funny.
So, sure. Motherhood is beautiful and joyous and truly a pleasure, but it's also difficult and hilarious. It's best to take the good with the bad, and laugh through every single moment you experience. If you can do that, not only will you make it through parenthood with your sanity intact, but you'll teach your kid to laugh through the time times, too.