The Fourth Trimester: Uterine Prolapse… Yup, That’s A Thing
Hey Mamas! I’m glad you’re here. Today begins the start of my new blog series, The Fourth Trimester. Today I’m chatting about uterine prolapse… yup, that’s a thing.
The Fourth Trimester is made up of the months that come after baby is born. For reference, let’s go ahead and call it the 12 months after baby is born. If you google fourth trimester, it’s usually referred to as the 3 months that follow birth, but in my opinion postpartum symptoms can go on for much longer than 3 months.
I’m going to come up with more topics to share throughout this series all relating to the fourth trimester (postpartum anxiety, postpartum depression, hair & skincare concerns, energy levels, working out, etc…) If there’s anything specific you would like for me to share or cover, please send me an email! I would love for this series to be a collaborative series from all of us. We’ve already chatted so much about it over on Instagram, so I thought we could bring it this way as well.
In each blog post I’ll be sharing a bit about my experience (if I’ve had any in that area). Also, there are some topics that I obviously haven’t experienced for myself, so if you have a story to share about your experience let me know. I would love to have a few guest posts! My hope is that this series will open up a conversation about the fourth trimester, to help mamas feel less alone, and to be a resource. I really hope you guys like the series, and please let me know if there’s anything you would like for me to chat about!
Okay, so where do I even begin on uterine prolapse. Ugh, I really hate the word prolapse, lol. Also I want to clarify that there are certain degrees of severity when it comes to prolapse, and mine is minor compared to what some people deal with. For example there’s nothing visual going on, lol (you can’t see my organs falling out of my body or anything, but man somedays it feels like they are).
Anyway…I first found out I had a prolapse after Noah was born. He was about 5 months old. I was carrying him around ALL of the time to get him to fall asleep. He was a BIG baby, and that extra weight pushing down on me was not helpful. I was so anxious about putting him in his crib to let him cry, so I would literally carry him around until he fell asleep.
I had no idea what was going on. I was a first time mom, and had never even heard the word prolapse. I went into my doctor, and they confirmed the prolapse. Luckily mine wasn’t terrible. But somedays I swore it felt like my uterus was just going to fall out. It created a really uncomfortable pressure. The more I was on my feet, the worse it got. My doctor recommended physical therapy, pelvic floor exercises at home, and also mentioned that I could get a pessary if I wanted. Immediately I thought “heck no I’m not getting the pessary” so I went home and worked on it. My mother in law actually flew into town to help out with Noah so I could take some time off of my feet.
Gradually it got better, but it was uncomfortable for awhile. I wasn’t able to work out like I used to. Long walks were even out of the question. Running? No way. I focused on core exercises and kegels. Honestly I don’t know if any of that stuff helped, or if it was more of a “time” thing. I think I started to finally feel better when he was around 1 year old.
Now… this time around, it’s worse. Luckily the degree of severity isn’t major. I know a lot of people that I read about have a very serious prolapse, and I’ll share one of their stories below incase you’re dealing with something more severe that might require more attention. Baby #2 did some damage during pregnancy. I had a really hard pregnancy with Emma. Noah’s pregnancy was easy, and I was able to remain active. But pregnancy #2…. I had SPD, and a lot of sciatic pain. It wasn’t pretty, and I spent A LOT of my third trimester on the couch. I wasn’t able to remain active which I think also contributed to the prolapse this time around. My muscles weren’t active at all for awhile, so now my body is really weak. Sometimes I feel like the blob…. seriously (where did my muscles go!?)
So… the last couple of months have been rough. I get a lot of questions about my “work-out routine”… Welp there isn’t one. I’m not really able to work out like normal. Sure, I can do some basic stuff, and I probably should do more of it (like stretches, pilates/yoga), but I really miss going on long walks and running. Cardio in general would be amazing (even the elliptical is off the radar for me right now). I’m wondering if I would be able to do a spin class? That might be something I could look into since I would be seated, and not putting a ton of pressure on the pelvic floor. But then again, they stand sometimes while spinning… so maybe not. It’s honestly super frustrating. Just when you really want to get back into shape for swimsuit season, you can’t.
It’s frustrating to see all of these other people working out. Don’t even get me started on how many times I see people sharing their workout routines on Instagram, and how it bums me out. I used to be SO active, so it’s really hard to not be able to get up and go out on a run, jump around at the trampoline park with Noah, or put in a P90x video and do a cardio workout.
I feel best in the morning. This is because I’ve just been sleeping and not moving for an extended period of time. As the day goes on, it gets worse. I’ve had to stop carrying Emma around before she goes to sleep (which has actually made her able to self-soothe much quicker than Noah did). Luckily she’s a super chill baby, so crying it out for her didn’t last long at all. Once the end of the day nears, all I want to do is lay down and rest. If I spend a lot of time walking around and doing house chores, I will feel pretty uncomfortable by the end of the day.
Luckily prolapse doesn’t really interfere with sex, since sex does the opposite of prolapse. But I will have to admit after a long day, when I’m feeling pressure & a bit of discomfort, I’m not always jumping at the opportunity. Seriously, I can’t freaking wait for this to be over. I’m hoping it doesn’t take a whole year this time like it did with Noah. I’m trying to work on core exercise in the morning, and trying to stay off my feet when possible.
I also ordered pelvic floor exercise weights which I just started using in the morning. My doctor recommended them, and they’ve been helping. I will admit I wasn’t super excited about the idea at first, lol. It’s not the most fun thing to do while drinking your morning coffee. I’ll link the ones I bought HERE for anyone who might be looking for them.
Luckily my prolapse isn’t really bad. Some women can have it so bad that they require surgery. I’m lucky that I’ve returned to normal after Noah was born, and am hoping everything returns to normal soon this time around as well. With proper exercise, and time I’m sure it will be better soon (remaining positive over here, ha!).
More Info On Prolapse:
A detailed medical article: HERE
A story of another woman who dealt with pretty severe prolapse, and how she got over it HERE
If you have an article that you’ve written on this topic with your personal experience, feel free to send me the link and I’ll add it here. It seems like this is a topic that a lot of people aren’t jumping at the opportunity to write about.
If you have any tips for uterine prolapse, feel free to leave them in the comments for other mamas below! Thanks so much for reading today. This was an awkward post to write, and I was nervous about sharing it. But my biggest reason for sharing was to help someone out there understand that they aren’t alone if they are dealing with physical issues postpartum.