• Fri, Mar 7 - 9:00 am ET

The 8 Best Things You Will Do Immediately After Having a Baby

shutterstock_161041592Pregnancy is kind of like solitary confinement on Orange Is The New Black. After you’ve been locked in solitary with nothing cool to do and no wine and no coffee, you start to realize that even your worst days out on the jail yard were a cakewalk in comparison to this bullshit.

Then, you finally give birth to your squirmy, slimy, adorable baby. That is a wonderful moment in and of itself, and as you start to recover from labor, you realize that the world is wonderful again. You can jump in the air with glee without hurting your back (after six weeks of healing)! You can roll over and sleep in any position you want! You can pound a glass of wine after you finish breast-feeding! Yes, life is good.

Everyone says that you feel the most magical rush of hormones and chemicals that make you freaking elated after giving birth, and that is true. But what people fail to mention is how FUCKING AMAZING you feel when you return to normal life and do your normal favorite things after months of deprivation while pregnant.

Here are the eight most amazing things you will experience in the hours after having a baby:

1. Look At Your New Miracle.

Okay, I had to put this in because it is cheesy but true. It’s incredible to do all of the hard work in labor or go through a C-section and realize that a real HUMAN came out of your body. Wow!

2. Eat A Huge Meal.

I was all about the carb loading after having a baby, following sweaty hours of labor. No other meal in my life has ever tasted so delicious.

3. Pee.

The first time you pee after having a baby has the potential to hurt or feel numb. But after that, peeing is fun again without a baby’s head pressing on your bladder. Yippee!

4. Take A Bath.

I steered clear of hot baths during pregnancy because I like baths very, very hot. That first bath after having a baby was…indescribable.

5. DRINK!

I had a yummy bottle of Bailey’s waiting for me to sip on after I learned how to breast-feed.

6. Sleep On Your Stomach.

That is exactly what I did the first time I slept after giving birth. I was exhausted, and it felt soo good.

7. Drink Coffee.

It was rad to wake up in the morning after having a baby and pour a huge cup of coffee. But not too much because I was still breast-feeding. Dammit.

8. Look In The Mirror.

After popping out a baby, I looked super skinny in comparison, even though I hadn’t lost my baby weight yet. Score!

(Image: Yuriy Rudyy/Shutterstock)

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  • Andrea

    “You can roll over and sleep..”

    HA ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!!! You are SO funny!!

    • Bethany Ramos

      Weeeeell, they only guarantee 6 solid hours after the baby is first born, and then you are fucked. ;)

  • aCongaLine

    My husband got me the biggest, most awesome submarine sandwich from my favorite deli, and I hounded that bitch. It was glorious. And I washed it down with coffee.

    Aside from meeting/cuddling/snuggling the baby, eating is my favorite part of the day after giving birth- it’s like “GIVE ME ALL THE FOOD! IDGAF!”

    Amazing.

    • Andrea

      OMG I gorged while still in the delivery room. I kid you not, they had barely washed him up and placed him on my chest. Best. Meal. Ever.

    • aCongaLine

      Right? We’re talking #3, and I’m like, “As long as you get me a sandwich.” lol

  • http://www.twitter.com/ohladyjayne allisonjayne

    Yep! Sounds about right. Cheers to baths, sleeping on my stomach, coffee and all the drinks (gin and tonic for me, wine is nice but makes me too sleepy).

    I still look at my kid and can’t believe that I made a human. I have a photo of her as an 8 cell embryo and it’s like whoa, now she has a wildly complex brain and is a whole actual PERSON. Then I start thinking about how my mom made me and how we’re all just made of cells and how everything comes from dead stars and the how vast the universe is and ok maybe I need to stop watching so many science documentaries.

    • Alex Lee

      Gurl, COSMOS with Neil DeGrasse Tyson is starting on Sunday.

    • http://mother--bored.tumblr.com/ Aimee Ogden

      Thank you for reminding me to set this up to tape so that I can stare dreamily at my science boyfriend whenever I want to after it first airs.

  • Kay_Sue

    All of this. Yes. And that first pee was the best pee of my life. I don’t know why, but both times, it was so intensely gratifying…

    My husband sneaked in good food, because he had to work the day after (they were kind enough to let him be present for the birth though, so there’s that, I guess). But on his way home, he found the only Quizno’s in our area still open and brought me the biggest most delicious turkey, ranch and swiss sandwich ever….and when I was done with that, he whipped out another one. One of many reasons that I keep him around. ;)

    • Véronique Houde

      I couldn’t pee :( they forgot to bring me to the bathroom and between the tear near my urethra that had swollen and the epidural, I was completely unable to do so they had to put in a catheter ew.

    • MaebykittyRN

      Confession: I kind of liked having a catheter after my C-section. I was so tired of getting up to pee every hour for months, it was nice to not have to worry about it for a day or so.

    • Véronique Houde

      oh god i hated it because every time i had to get up to pick up my daughter out of her bassinet, i always had to watch where I stepped and it was uncomfortable when you moved around. I was so happy when my doctor told the nurses to pull that shit out of me!!!

    • MaebykittyRN

      Yea I can see how having to get out of bed would make it more uncomfortable. My son was in NICU for the first 24 hours and I was so numb I was not going anywhere. I just got to lay there and pee freely.

    • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

      I didn’t mind it once it was in, but I felt the process of inserting it and I really could have done without that part!

    • Lee

      After birth peeing was excruciating. I didn’t think to tell anyone that I have an allergy to prolonged exposure to latex and they cathed me because of the epidural (it was written in my paper work though). Between that and the tear it was two weeks of awful.

    • Kay_Sue

      Ahhhh! That’s a horror story. I’m sorry you missed that experience. I had already had a catheter because of my epidural (I think? I don’t really know). Maybe that’s why it was so…enjoyable, for lack of a better word?

    • darras

      yep I had a catheter because of my epidural. Well.. mostly, they gave me the epidural and then they made me to to the bathroom to try to pee. I was supposed to let them know if I peed or not but I was so numb down there and they turned on the bloody tap (for privacy?) so I couldn’t hear a thing! Didn’t have a clue if I’d peed… so catheter it was.. My first pee post baby was quite a long time after!

    • http://mother--bored.tumblr.com/ Aimee Ogden

      I found peeing horrible! I’d get cramps every time my bladder emptied and my uterus went, “Oh look, more room to roll around in.” The first time I peed alone after my c-section, I called the nurse because I thought those stabbing pains couldn’t possibly be normal and that I might perhaps be dying. *embarrassed look*

    • Kay_Sue

      We all have moments where we think we are dying. With my younger son, I went to the doctor because I was having stabbing pains in my chest and I thought he had broken my ribs. Since I couldn’t get in to see my OB right away, I went to my general practitioner, who took one look at me and said, very slowly, “You do realize you’re very pregnant right? Baby has to go somewhere.” Up til then, I was fairly convinced that my rib had broken and punctured my lung because it hurt so much…

    • ted3553

      yes to the first pee. The nurse came in the bathroom with me and was filling the peri bottle yapping about how she’d talk me through how to pee and looked over as I was nearly done a glorious long pee. I had 2 bags of pitocin mix in me and I pee every 2 hours on an average day.

  • CMP414

    I remember when my daughter was like 10 days old and we took her out to a restaurant. I was like “This is amazing! I can drink again!” And I got to do it while gazing at her sleeping peacefully in the carrier….memories :)

  • MaebykittyRN

    Sleeping on my back was so glorious after I had my baby. It was too uncomfortable while I was pregnant, but that first night in the hospital I was like “SOOOO COMFY!” Also it was nice to feel like I could breathe again.

  • Véronique Houde

    bending over and tying your shoes as if nothing was ever there and then just realizing how easy it is. *bliss*

  • http://mother--bored.tumblr.com/ Aimee Ogden

    Eating a shitload of food, BUT HAVING ROOM TO PUT IT ALL! Amazing how the heartburn clears up once you get a baby or two out of the way. I’m glad the hospital I was at had good food because I ate soooo much of it. “You have meatloaf? Good, bring me up a pan of it. And a blender full of chocolate milkshake, please.”

    • Kay_Sue

      I might have gone a little overboard on all of the heartburn triggers I had to avoid during the last half of my second pregnancy. On the upside, I was breastfeeding, and now my kid will eat anything that stands still long enough. Coincidence? I choose to believe not!

    • Frannie

      The hospital my son was delivered at wasn’t bad, but it had a ton of restaurants nearby that delivered! SCORE!!! I think I actually gained weight in the hospital.

    • SA

      Oh my gosh, the FOOD. I had such bad indigestion I would literally be terrified of my next meal when I was pregnant (except for ice cream). I couldn’t believe the feeling of being able to eat and have room….it was glorious!!

  • Nica

    #1 totally! After both my births, the feeling of elation was just something I never, ever experienced before. I know know what brew of hormones floods your body when that baby comes out, but WOW! I joked with my midwife that if that mix could ever be replicated in a lab, the entire world would be in a drug-induced, euphoric stupor forever!
    After the birth of my 2nd, there were SO many moms in labor that day that there was both a shortage of rooms (women were literally laboring in the hallways and waiting rooms) and nurses. My husband and I were left in the L&D room for three hours after my son was born and I just got to cuddle, stare at and breastfeed him for three uninterrupted, blissful hours. My L&D room was at the very end of a hallway and a corner room so it was very quiet and out of the way. After three hours, a nurse came running in, apologized for the delay, got me cleaned up and over to the maternity/recovery side. I couldn’t have cared less. Having that time with my baby was beyond wonderful.

  • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

    I didn’t do any of those things. C section meant no bath, only short showers. I couldn’t roll over for weeks, so no laying on my stomach. I couldn’t bear to look at my war zone torso, I had a catheter in for awhile, the hospital food was gross, and I was too tired to look at my baby. I could have used a drink, but I didn’t give birth in France, so there was none to be had. I never gave up coffee, but I didn’t drink any for awhile because all I wanted was to sleep.
    Though, when I got home, I had a Guinness at some point.

    • Jessifer

      Exactly the same here. I do remember, however, asking every single medical personnel that came into my hospital room whether it was time yet for my painkiller meds!

    • SusannahJoy

      They asked me if I wanted to hold my baby. I said no.

      I looked at him in awe later, but yeah, in the delivery room I was too tired. And my husband had him.

  • darras

    I still don’t sleep on my stomach and my kid is turning 8 months on monday :( My engorgement issues FINALLY sorted themselves out a month and a half ago but I’m terrified that one night sleeping in my favourite position (on my belly damnit!) will end up in the nightmare resurfacing and I’ll be back to rocks on my chest. SO MUCH SADFACE!

  • Zorbs

    I had no appetite the first week PP. Probably because I had the world’s worst hormonal migraine, couldn’t exercise and didn’t sleep.

  • MerlePerle

    Going on my first run post-baby was glorious! 6 weeks ago I couldn’t walk! Look at me running! …of course I was slower than a high turtle, but it felt like I was the Flash!

    • Bethany Ramos

      YAY – I legit peed my pants on my first post baby run, like there was absolutely zero bladder control and my husband laughed at me hilariously, but I had a great time. Godspeed. :-)

  • SA

    The food. I have never been so hungry in my LIFE.

    The mirror thing is so funny. I felt damn fine. I couldn’t believe how much smaller my stomach looked and thought the nursing shirt was flattering and you couldn’t even tell I had been pregnant. Then I was accosted for drinking while pregnant 3 weeks post-partum, on my birthday, it was the very first ‘public’ beer I had ordered since before I was pregnant and I was SO excited about it and some guy walked up to me and said “Oh I see you are drinking for two” really sarcastically. I never looked in the mirror the same after than.

    • Bethany Ramos

      So fucking rudeeeee!

  • SusannahJoy

    I actually didn’t do most of these. *snif* Am I the only person who had absolutely no appetite after giving birth? Ugh, they kept trying to get me to eat and I’m like “seriously, I’m fucking exhausted, I don’t want to eat!!” Sleeping on my stomach for the first time was so amazing though.

    • Nica

      Same here, I had no overwhelming desire to chow down after giving birth. I was WAY too exhausted! Sleep and a big glass of ice water was what I craved.

  • Valerie

    I still can’t sleep on my stomach for some reason. My boobs feel weird and I just can’t. I think the first shower was amazing and I definitely loved being able to eat more than four bites of food without feeling like I was stuffed to the gills. I’m small so for both pregnancies my babies took up too much room far too early on and I could not eat much without feeling full. I still managed to gain shitloads of weight, though. Thanks, Nature!