PostPartum Hospital Experience


I shared my birth story here but realized I didn't share much of the postpartum hospital experience...
It was such a blur in the past so writing these moments down - or "blogging" about it - helps me to capture and remember the experience a little I'm creating a small time capsule for it. And, hopefully, it can help give some insight for mamas-to-be on what to possibly expect to happen for them too.

So what happens after delivering the baby?
After giving birth, the labor & delivery nurses will usually check vitals (height, weight, etc.) for baby - in the SAME ROOM you are in - and make sure you/mama are stabilized for at least 2 hours before transferring you and baby to the postpartum unit (during my 1st pregnancy with Kai we never transferred rooms and stayed in the same room the whole time so each hospital may vary on this). You also get the chance to breastfeed and bond skin-to-skin contact with your new precious baby at this time too. 
TIP: Make sure your baby is always nearby you (or in same room) and double check that any staff coming into your room has a valid hospital badge.

When we got to our new room, we met our postpartum nurses. Usually by now, it'll be close to one of the meal times which means you/mama can finally eat! (Yeah, unfortunately, once they start you on fluids at the L&D unit, you can't eat so make sure to have a good meal beforehand!) However, I've been waiting 8-9 months to eat certain things again and the hubby made it happen! He went out and picked up some sushi for me and it did not disappoint! Mmm-mmm! 

They usually want mama and baby to stay overnight at hospital for 2 nights but we wanted to leave as soon as possible to get back home to our sweet Kaibear. They said the earliest we could be discharged is after 24 hours since baby was delivered and as long as all tests were done beforehand.

What tests, you ask? 
Before discharging from the hospital, at least from our experience, your baby will given tests to pass: newborn hearing screen, newborn labs, newborn bath (we opted out of this one), CCHD (critical congenital heart defects) screening, and optional circumcision for baby boys. If baby doesn't pass on the first try, they usually will redo the test again a couple times so that helps give baby another chance to pass. You will also receive a birth certificate form to complete along with a postpartum admission packet and discharge instructions. Since we requested to discharge sooner, this was a lot to get done in a short amount of time. That meant staff was coming in to the room semi-often to conduct either a test or check-in with meals, drinks, have you sign paperwork, etc. It can feel like a lot going on while "recovering" so I don't really advise leaving too soon unless you really really want to. Having that extra day to help spread things out can be helpful and less stressful.

Family and close friends may want to visit too but it is up to you. Remember: you just gave birth and your newborn baby is very vulnerable so it's okay to be cautious who you want to come and it's okay if you don't want any hospital visits. Your health and baby's health are most important right now. I fall on the more cautious side and, since we were just staying 1 night, we only had both our parents (plus Kaibear!) come visit us at the hospital.

How was your postpartum hospital experience? Did you enjoy it?

I briefly remember our 1st postpartum experience from giving birth with Kai {read my blog post about it here} but I remember it felt very VIP since I was working at a sister hospital at that time and my old boss called the hospital I was delivering at to let them know I was coming (cause I happened to go into work that AM). Perks we had that made it extra special: a big spacious room with a shower in the bathroom (felt like a hospital suite!), double beds so the hubby got to sleep on a bed too (versus a couch like this time), hospital meals for both me/patient and the hubby (which was super sweet!), and just great staff service overall! We remember having a really good experience back then and it still holds!

For more info on after birth recovery, you can read about my 2 weeks postpartum experience here.

As always, thanks for reading and sending you air hugs! 

#maternity #postpartum #momlife

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