This Mom's Picture three days after giving birth will inspire you and remind you that giving birth and becoming a mom is tough. But totally worth it.
There are so many things no one tells you about having a baby that you don't realize until after she arrives. You can search Pinterest for nursery decor, read all the parenting books and articles and even eat exactly what you're supposed to when you're pregnant—but nothing can prepare you for how dramatically your life changes when you bring a (beautiful) new life into the world.
That's why we are so inspired by one mom's amazing—and vulnerable—post about those first few days of being a new mom. It's incredible, sure, but it's also terrifying, strange and full of waves of so many emotions, that often, you don't know what to do, feel or think. Phoenix mom Danielle Haines welcomed her son, Ocean, last November and recently shared a photo from when she was three days postpartum. In the striking shot, she's topless, with red, puffy eyes.
The caption reads:
"This is a picture of me 3 days postpartum. I was so raw and so open, I was a f***ing mess. I loved my baby, I missed his daddy (he went back to work that day), I was mad at my mom, my heart hurt for my brother because my mom left us and now I had a little boy that looked like him, my nipples were cracked and bleeding, my milk was almost in, my baby was getting really hungry, I was feeling sad that people kill babies, like on purpose, I had not slept since I went into labor, I didn't know how to put my boobs away, my vagina was sore from sitting on it while nursing constantly, I was kinda [losing] my mind. It wasn't easy but I was so supported and fed and reminded that the mothers before me had been through this part of motherhood, and that I'd get through it just fine too."
It's no surprise that moms across the world relate to her raw, honest, portrait of what motherhood is often like in the beginning. Pure joy—and pure fear, too. The post has been shared more than 20,000 times so far, and moms are sharing their own postpartum stories. One woman wrote: "I knew my life would change after I had my first baby, and as much as I prepared and anticipated her arrival I didn't understand how hard, how different, how difficult it was actually going to be. Yet I couldn't pull myself away from her. I and my ex-husband lived with my family at the time and I wanted my mother, who only wanted to offer her assistance and help me, to keep her distance. I was overly *perhaps* crazy possessive. I wanted to be the one to do everything, i didn't want any help—I think I was trying to convince and prove to myself I could be a good mother. My milk came in around day 3 or 4 and I wasn't ready for the engorgement. I cried and felt helpless when all I wanted was to have some sort of picturesque control. The one who could do it all. My body was unrecognizable to me. I became a slave to my own unrealistic expectations ... I didn't turn to any friends because they couldn't relate, or didn't want to, we were so young ... I was so tired but couldn't sleep I couldn't fathom how on earth I was going to this day in and day out. It was so hard during that time."
If you need a good cry, or to remember how far you've come or reassurance that you'll get through these tough days, read the comments on this post. And as if Haines wasn't inspiring enough: she's personally responding to all comments. We're in awe, aren't you?