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Journal

What I Wish More People Had Told Me

Ask any mum who’s been through it once and they’ll tell you why they prioritise postpartum care the second time around. Experience is a powerful teacher. Many second time mums have lived through the repercussions of not giving themselves enough time or proper care to heal and recover. They understand the benefits and the critical importance of honouring those early weeks after birth.
Village For Mama Black and white photo of a woman lying on a couch, smiling at the camera, while holding a baby on her chest.

Becoming a mum is a transformative experience, filled with moments of overwhelming joy, challenge, and profound change. Yet, amidst the excitement and preparation, there’s a crucial aspect often glossed over: the postpartum period. This week, my first born turned 5 and I have been reflecting on her birth, postpartum and my journey of motherhood so far. Since having the twins and experiencing two very different postpartum experience, I realised that even with all the hind sight, preparation and wisdom, you never get that first postpartum back. I wish more people had told me that.

You Never Get That First Postpartum Back

The first time you become a mother, everything is new and overwhelming. There’s a steep learning curve, not just in caring for your newborn but also in taking care of yourself. Many new mums, myself included, feel unprepared for the physical and emotional recovery that follows childbirth. We often hear about the sleepless nights and the joys of newborn snuggles, but less about the necessity of nurturing the mother.

Why Second Time Mamas Prioritise Postpartum Care

Ask any mum who’s been through it once and they’ll tell you why they prioritise postpartum care the second time around. Experience is a powerful teacher. Many second time mums have lived through the repercussions of not giving themselves enough time or proper care to heal and recover. They understand the benefits and the critical importance of honouring those early weeks after birth.

Second-time mums know the truth: postpartum isn’t just a period to ‘get through.’ It’s a vital time for healing, reflection, and bonding with your baby. They’ve felt the flow-on effects—both physically and emotionally—of not prioritising their recovery and health through this time.

The Increasing Challenge with More Children

With each child, while the love in your family grows, so do your responsibilities. It becomes harder to rest and recover as you might have in your first postpartum period. Your attention is divided, and your time is stretched even thinner. This is why understanding and preparing for your first postpartum period is so critical.

Take Advice from Those Who’ve Been There

Those who’ve walked this path before can offer invaluable insights. Their collective wisdom is clear: make the most of your first postpartum period. This isn’t about indulging; it’s about healing. Prepare and plan for your postpartum (I’ve written a guide to help you plan for a well nourished and well supported fourth trimester). Surround yourself with a village of support—be it through loved ones, community resources, or professional help.

Prioritise nourishment, ensuring you’re eating well, staying hydrated, and finding moments of rest wherever possible. Gather your village of support (The Village for Mama book helps you gather your village and organise a meal train). Allow yourself to feel supported, and know that by taking care of your needs, you’re also taking care of your family.

If there’s one thing I could go back and tell my pre-motherhood self, it would be this: cherish and protect your first postpartum period. You only get that first experience once.

Leila x

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