The time for postpartum recovery is crucial after you’ve given birth to a human baby, and it’s an undisputed fact! Your uterus grew up to the size of a watermelon and now needs a chance to get back to its former self. Your hormones need to settle down, and who even knows what’s going on with your internal organs, your pelvis, tailbone, and of course, your vag.
Experts agree that women need up to a whole year to recover from childbirth. Yet, thousands of women don’t even get the legally required 12 weeks of maternity leave! Getting paid for your time off is a pipe dream for many, many postpartum women.
When you think about it, this whole thing is a misogynistic, patriarchal bs. Just imagine what would happen if a working man had a surgery, or broke his leg? He wouldn’t be expected to get back to work for months, and it will be, of course, all paid.
An image that was shared on the Facebook page Labor of Love – Lancaster, PA, depicted why women desperately need time to heal after having babies perfectly.
The page is run by birth advocate and a mom herself, Laura Fry, and she used the image to represent the wound left by the placenta after birth. The image, together with the explanation she gave along with it, is absolutely genius.
“22cm or 8.6 inches. That is the exact diameter of a paper plate, AKA the fine china in our house. It is also the average diameter of a placenta.” – explains Fry, describing the dimensions of the plate she shared in the pic.
She even goes on to explain the significance of the paper plate (i.e., placenta), and she writes that most women are given the advice to take it easy for a few weeks after birth. Many of us, however, don’t even know what it looks like or what’s the reason for it. Fry explains that one of those reasons is that women are basically left with a wound the size of their placenta after it is delivered, and naturally, it needs time to heal.
The postpartum absolutely NEEDS to be taken seriously, especially because not taking time to rest and focus on the physical recovery makes women more vulnerable to complications like infections and hemorrhaging. With the U.S. having some of the highest maternal mortality rates (in the developed world), this is not something that we can afford to take lightly!