When you are pregnant, there is so much care and attention provided to you during those three trimesters. Everyone is fawning over you, you have multiple doctor’s appointments, and you’re thrown baby showers and gender reveals… However, once the baby arrives, you get two to three days of care and a “You got this, mama!” and you are sent on your way until your six-week follow up. What no one really talks about is what I like to call the “fourth trimester”, or a bonus trimester if you will.
I am here to tell you: ASK FOR HELP during the first few months of motherhood – and be specific. You need a meal cooked. You need to take an uninterrupted shower. You need resources for mental health. You need at least three consecutive hours of sleep. No matter what it is, do not lose yourself and let yourself drown under the pretense that you should have a natural maternal instinct and be able to do it all on your own.
On the chance that you are new to the city or don’t have a large support system, the resources in the city are boundless! Many hospitals offer outpatient breastfeeding appointments, but there are independent lactation consultants such as Bonnie Knows Breast and Latched Louisville. Meet new moms at playgroups like at Glow Worm Play Cafe or for story time at the many locations of the Louisville Free Public Library.
It does not matter if it is your first child, your second, or your fifth, you do not have to do it alone. Find your village, and be honest with them about what you need during that fourth trimester (and beyond). No one has it all figured out, myself included! I promise you that.