1.) Stand up for yourself It's your labour and your day. I felt throughout that they were the boss and they could make the decisions! I had a tired, stressed, underpaid, over worked midwife. I have a severe needle phobia and at one point a midwife hid the synotocin behind her back waiting for me to look away before she jumped in, even though i had clearly expressed my wishes! you have the right to ask for a different midwife! I had also expressed a desire to breastfeed but stated on my birth plan that i didn't feel confident about it. When my daughter arrived the midwife asked if i wanted to breastfeed. I was tired and emotionally drained so said 'no' half asleep, the midwife then said 'SMA gold alright then' i feel annoyed that this was my only breastfeeding support.
2.)If you need stitches let them get on with it. I kicked up a huge fuss due to phobia and delayed it by 2 hours. during which the numbness had gone down and it was painful. Also, drink tons of water!!! can't stress that point enough!! As I was so sore down below i didn't want to go to the loo ever again! I virtually stopped drinking for about 4 days. Sure enough it was like peeing acid and i thought on many an occasion that i would pass out! It was only when my kidneys became sore and i had terrible backache that i decided to drink tons of water and to my desperate relief all was better!as the urine was more dilute. It's common sense but i was in too much of a daze when my daughter arrived to think about it.
3.) Have painkillers to hand again it seems super obvious but i put up with all the pain of stitches etc. didn't once think to reach for the painkillers as i think i thought i was supposed to feel pain as i'd just had a baby. Just watch out for anything with codine as when i eventually phoned the midwife for painkillers i took co-codomol and was then constipated for a week!(oh the joys of motherhood!)
4.) Bonding I felt as i work with children i should have known what to expect. we had planned everything that could be planned and i was just waiting for the angels from above to start singing as my baby had now arrived. Oh dear how wrong i was, Bonding took along time and i feel looking back i probably nad post-natal depression. The first few months were very hard. However now my daughter if 17 months and she is the light of our lives. Don't beat yourself up if bonding isn't all rosy and ask for help when you need it
I havn't written these tips to scare or worry anyone i just remember thinking on several occasions 'why didn't anybody tell me that?' I have written this to help anyone with a little of the unneccary stress of having a newborn! and i plan to have another shortly so it can't have been all that bad!