Postpartum poop tips

OMG - listen, I am embarrassed even writing this but YOU HAVE TO KNOW. I am HERE for you and my fellow mamas and people need to talk about this! Literally this is one of the TOP 5 things someone asks me about when talking about postpartum so naturally it MUST BE WRITTEN ABOUT.

I’m dedicating this post to my new friend Eliza who inspired this post. Hey girl!

You want to be prepared for pregnancy, motherhood… but no one wants to talk about the details in between when it comes to giving birth and ALL the stuff your body has to go through before, during and after the fact. I’m here to touch on just ONE of those things - but a pretty major moment.

If for some reason, you were blessed with amazing bowels and you’ve never had an issue with this - my sincerest congratulations.

So here it is - let’s talk about what it’s like to poop for the first time after you give birth. And then show this to your partner who is NOT giving birth and make them feel really bad :)

Pregnancy

First things first, PRE-baby, you go through a lot of back and forth with your systems: nausea, constipation, hemorrhoids, peeing 4937548 times a day, leaking when you don’t pee in time.

Side note for another post some day - I actually found out that my pelvic floor is really messed up from having kids, and I need to see a physical therapist about this! But having pelvic floor dysfunction can lead to urine leakage as well as bowel issues. You might want to ask your doctor or midwife about this if you are experiencing any issues!

Will you poop when you give birth?

Absolutely possible. You are pushing a baby out - and you are supposed to “push” from your rectum, so naturally other things can come out. ;-) Don’t worry, the nurses are God-sent angels and clean it up quickly.

Now…post-partum!

Well, depending on your hospital - you may be forced to poop before you can leave. It used to be a thing. It wasn’t a thing with Graham.

Now, the things our body has that keep us from pooping our pants at random times, are the same ones that make us have to push in order to get it done. So, you can imagine that the thought of any sort of pushing after pushing out a baby - MiiiiiiiGHT make you start sweating at the thought of breaking your stitches. It also makes you constipated.

Will it hurt?

Yes.

(For most.)

I honestly think half of the pain is made up in our heads, though, because we THINK it is going to hurt and that we are going to bust our stitches. Do this at a time where you can be alone for a while, take your time, and sit with your feelings (physical and emotional lol).

Now, let me tell you about something else just as fair warning. I find the INTESTINAL pain to be worse than the actual deed. I always had (a few days to weeks after) - intense pain in my intestines as the kinks were worked out. It felt like contractions all over again, but in a different place. Because of this - I continue to take the stool softeners and drink tons of water. I’ve asked my midwives about this and they agree it’s just part of the “constipation”.

Ok, so things you can do to help yourself out -

>> Take the stool softeners while you are still in the hospital - don’t wait. Don’t like meds? Me either. But I find these to be really helpful and temporary! I took mine until the intestinal pain was completely gone, about 1-1.5 weeks later.

>> Use the Tucks pads, cooling creams/sprays, do it all. Wine helps too.

>> Drink tons of water. Like, double and triple what you are used to. You just ran a marathon, you may be breastfeeding, and now you also have to deal with lubricating your intestines. AND - drink warm lemon water every morning. Warm - not hot or cold.

>> Apply counter pressure. If you are worried about your stitches, THIS tip is pure gold. You can freeze a pad and use that to hold them in place. It’s half science, but half a mind game.

>> Limit the foods that cause you GI issues - dairy could be one of them. Up your intake of fiber-rich foods like fresh fruits, veggies, whole grains.

>> Keep in mind that painkillers are constipating (!!!!!) so gobble up your Motrin, mama, but be warned and be proactive about some of the other tips above.

I hope this is helpful, but if you have any specific questions - let me know below!

My new favorite stroller - the Mockingbird

Y’all, I know I have 3 kids. Do I really need another stroller?!

Yes. The answer is yes.

Here’s why.

We have a single stroller that we used with Carmen - that worked with her carseat. We also kind of used it with PJ. It’s 4 years old and a BIG issue I have is that a lot of our stuff was in the basement and got pretty gross over the last year. (I wish I covered everything with a tarp) The other issue is that this stroller is hella bulky. It’s a PITA to get around the city, in and out of our tiny row home. We also have an umbrella stroller - which is super light and easy to move around, but that doesn’t fit a newborn baby. We ALSO have a 3rd stroller, a double stroller- hand-me-down that is, maybe 9 years old, LOL - and I’m sure you can just use your imagination to picture how gross and dirty it is after being with approximately 6 children over 9 years.

SO. I was definitely thinking I needed a new stroller for the baby. But my original idea was to buy a brand-new $900 double stroller from you-know-what brand. I could use it for Graham, but also for PJ and/or Carmen.

Truly, I was trying to justify spending the money. If I was going to have to spend this amount of money, well, it should be a double, right?!

THEN, my sister-in-law told me she met the creator of a new direct-to-consumer stroller brand called Mockingbird and that I should check it out. I did, and I got it.

I should note that it’s not a double stroller, but that’s okay for us right now!

Here’s why I got the Mockingbird.

COST

First thing: cost. Cost is huge to me when I’m buying things, in general.. Everything is SO expensive these days. It’s crazy… but my Mockingbird stroller was only $350. That is literally half, if not MORE THAN HALF the cost of the strollers I was looking at. And for that $350, you get a free 30-day trial, free shipping and a LIFETIME WARRANTY. I did also get a bassinet for an extra $100 because I wanted to have the option to use that in the newborn days.

Do you want to know why they can do this? They cut out the middle man. By skipping the retail markup and going direct-to-consumer (DTC), they let us save money without sacrificing quality!

IT’S…CUTE

Call me whatever you want, but I like my things to look nice. When I was nesting for the new baby, I threw away a ton of crap. And my friend Gaby trained me to only keep the things that are super functional, super used, and super nice to look at. So anything I buy now - I keep this in mind. I don’t shop just to shop. I go for quality over quantity. I don’t buy a ton of fast-fashion. So, I wanted my stroller to…bring me joy, as Marie Kondo would say.

But seriously, you all know me, I walk to coffee shops for meetings, I walk to the park with my girls, I LOVE to walk around the city! The Mockingbird stroller is sleek and gorgeous.

IT’S EASY TO USE, ESPECIALLY IN THE CITY.

With 3 kids, most of the time, I only have one hand to do things. (Even without kids, I think I only use one hand haha) This stroller is incredibly easy to use with one hand. It can be folded with one hand—with or without the seat attached—and it automatically locks and stands upright when folded.

The frame and seat suspension work together for smoother strolling and a more stable ride, and the handlebar rotates to accommodate parents of different heights. I often find myself having to push the stroller with one hand because I’m holding a coffee, water, or the baby in a wrap because he got fussy.

The Mockingbird folds up to go neatly in my car if I need to take it to another part of town.

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The basket under the stroller seat fits up to 25 lbs. of stuff. I have our backpack diaper bag in there, along with snacks for me, my massive 36 oz. YETI water bottle, and am able to add groceries or other things that I buy while out, with plenty of room.

IT’S SAFE.

Mockingbird strollers exceed the required safety standards across nearly every dimension and have been independently certified by the JPMA. Triple thumbs up.

Want to get your own? Click here to learn more about them. I’m happy to answer any questions you have, and the team at Mockingbird is incredibly responsive as well.

I did receive a gifted stroller in return for an honest review of it. This story is entirely accurate and I reached out to the brand on my own :)

Easy Workouts for Moms on-the-go!

I am not a huge lover of exercise, if I’m being totally honest. Pre-kids, I DID it but mostly because it fit into my routine, I’m big on routines, and I felt great after. 

I’ve had gym memberships, Private Pilates lessons (my fav), and the last thing I did BK (before kids) was a 7am barre class 5 days a week.

Fast forward to now and young kids just make my mornings a bit too unpredictable to get a workout in right away. Once they are older, my goal is to get back to a 6am workout. But in the meantime - I try to fit something in, usually later in the day, when typically my energy will start to slump too.

I also have to make a disclaimer that when I’m pregnant - I “work out” just about 1-2x a week and otherwise I shoot for 3x. Nothing crazy!

Let me share what works best for me. And please tell me what you have found to work for your schedule, too!

Keep in mind - this is all about finding about 20 mins, whenever and wherever, to move my body in whatever way you see fit.

WALKING

I like to walk everywhere. Everywhere. This is obviously made easier because I live in the city and like to work and meet in my local coffee shops… but walking is a game changer for me and how I get in most of my activity. Granted, I don’t do this when it’s raining or cold - so this is just for fall, spring and summer. But 30 minute walks into the city center not only help me with activity but also to clear my head from what’s going on that day. Oh, and vitamin D!

AT HOME YOGA

Even if you don’t have a mat, if you have a rug or carpet…. it works. Honestly, sometimes a mat is an barrier for me (“ugh I don’t feel like getting out my mat and changing my clothes...”) - so most of the time I do some stretches and sun salutations IN my pajamas on the carpet of my bedroom before I change my clothes for the day.  20 minutes, max. And if you want something more structured - there are a million youtube “classes” or online classes you can look up for free - or you can pay for a subscription to a streaming service like YogaGlo. After, I will often lay on the floor to a 5 min meditation too.

PELOTON

This at-home spin bike with classes is more pricey up front - but in my experience - WORTH IT. Plus, over time it is actually cheaper than most gym or studio memberships. I have had mine for almost two years and love it, still. I get bored rather quickly but I’m still going strong with my love for this one. Peloton gives you different levels of classes, different times, on demand vs live, and instructors of varying styles to help you find something perfect. I can take a low intensity spin class in my office in my pajamas. I can take a 10 minute hill ride between calls. I can take a 20 minute class with *NSYNC playing after the kids go to bed.

Amazing for me. 

I don’t have to *think* with this one because I don’t have any excuses. If I pass by it and I have the time - I do it.

(Ok SOCKS. Only barrier to entry here. I don’t always have socks on.)

If you’ve been thinking about getting one for your home, I highly recommend. Makes working in a quick workout (when you get 30 minutes to yourself) much easier.


So tell me- what are your tips for fitting in movement? Especially with kids?!