You can’t truly heal from a loss until you allow yourself to really feel the loss.
Grief can show up in a lot of different ways throughout the transitions in our lives, and does show up during postpartum for most of us. Some common symptoms of grief include:
- Body aches and pains
- Feeling like a fog is covering over you
Would you add anything to this list?
Next, let’s discuss some common things you may be grieving during postpartum:
- The person you were before you had kids
- Your pre-baby relationship with your partner
- Your pre-baby body
- Feeling differently sexually (especially if you experienced birth trauma)
- Your health, especially if there were issues during the birth
- The younger you (becoming a mom may make you feel older and more responsible and mature)
- The loss of a loved one (someone important to you not being alive to meet your baby and see them grow up, and for your baby to miss out on having a relationship with them)
- A past miscarriage/pregnancy loss (this baby born after all the grief and sadness from your loss is sometimes referred to as a “rainbow baby.” You can be feeling happy about the baby you do have and also be grieving the one you lost, all at the same time).
- Alone time/ having time for self-care to solely focus on your own wants and needs
- Lazy days (weekends and holidays look very different now)
- Uninterrupted time with family and friends
- Not being able to do it all (it often takes much longer to complete a task now than it did before you had kids, so you may not be feeling as productive as you were before the birth of your baby).
What else would you add here?
Finally, it’s also important to talk about things that may be triggering grief and loss. These include:
- Important dates
- Favorite songs
- Old pictures
- Favorite vacation spots
- Kids growing up
- Life continuing forward
- People moving on
Anything else you’d add to this list that triggers grief and loss in your own life?
There are a lot of different types of grief discussed in this blog. Know that some types of losses will be much deeper and longer lasting than others. There can also be compounded grief in postpartum, which is when a lot of losses are hitting you all at once. So, be on the lookout for that as well.