Let’s Talk Postpartum Personal Hygiene

So you just had your baby, and you are feeling a whirlwind of emotions. You are extremely tired and have so many thoughts and concerns racing through your mind. Friends and family are eager to see the new baby, but you might not feel ready to see them. Why? Because you don’t want to have to worry about your personal hygiene right now.

That’s completely normal! In fact, you won’t care about your personal hygiene for quite some time. No one will expect you to be all dolled up so soon after having a baby. Even though you know that, you may still feel a little uneasy about people seeing you for a while especially if its been an extended period of time since your last shower.

I felt weird having people come see me and Andrew after he was born because without a decent shower or at least some deodorant I don’t feel human. Everyone told me I looked great, and I’m sure for just having a baby I did look good, but I definitely didn’t feel great. I was in such a rush to take a shower after Andrew was born that I pushed myself too hard and collapsed in the bathroom! Luckily Anthony was close enough to be able to catch me before I hit the ground.

Once you get back home things start to fall into place. After a while you are able to get a routine down and life becomes a little easier. There is a huge difference though between things getting easier and things going back to normal. First of all you have to realize that there will be a new normal now that you have a baby. For example, now I am not just cooking dinner, I also have to watch and entertain a baby. Finding your new normal will take time. Andrew is 3 months old now and sometimes I still feel like we haven’t found it yet.

Some of your personal hygiene will suffer for a while, but hey, that’s not the priority. Don’t feel bad if you miss a shower, or forget to brush your teeth, or let your leg hair grow free for a while. It happens. You are making a personal sacrifice to make sure you have the time and energy to care for your new baby, and that’s awesome.

If someone offers to watch your newborn for a while so you can rest, let them. I would first take the chance to have a quick shower if I needed it, and then I would try and get some sleep. Getting even just a little bit of sleep can make you feel so much better. Odds are you won’t care as much about those hairy armpits if you have the energy to get something done. Doing even the simplest of chores just after having a baby can make you feel amazing, (provided you don’t overexert yourself).

I still have plenty of days where I don’t put on makeup or even get out of pajama pants. If I’m headed out for a little bit, then I throw on the sweatpants. If I’m going out to eat, then I’ll wear jeans and I might have the drive to put makeup on, but I might not. I already spend plenty of time getting Andrew and everything he needs ready before I can head out the door, so I usually don’t want to spend much time on myself. To be honest, I hardly ever care anymore what people even think of my appearance. If someone did say something negative about the way I look, I would just point to Andrew and say, “He looks good enough for the both of us.”

Everyone knows it is important to maintain good personal hygiene, but that doesn’t mean the world will end just because you don’t practice it everyday. If you just had your baby, don’t worry you will eventually be able to find some time and energy to take a shower again. It is more important that you can care for your baby. Doing too much too soon can cause you to injure yourself and make your recovery take longer. So let your hair grow, forget the makeup, skip a shower, and just relax.

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