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The 'right' way to be after birth

Updated: May 20, 2019

After the birth of the Duke and Duchess' baby, there was a lot of interest in the appearance of Megan two days after birth. Many applauded her for not hiding her 'mummy tummy', others felt she had let the 'new mother community' down ( by not appearing in her tracksuit bottoms and baggy T-shirt.) There was real concern about 'who chose the colour white?!" Brave choice.

I think if anyone had asked me to wear towering high heels and a beautiful, wimbledon-esq dress ensemble, 48 hours after birth, I would have politely shown them the door. However that is not to say that my view is universal among all post partum mothers.

I can remember learning in antenatal classes, that midwives looked suspiciously at any mother who was with a full face of make up, dressed in anything other than her 'comfies' and had a Cordon Bleu in the oven, the first week or so after having baby. Mum should be in bed, skin to skin with baby, or reclined on the sofa in her baked bean stained tracksuit and bare faced with eye bags clear to observe.

I see the reasoning behind this! A) Protecting women from having to feel they must look in charge, in control and be the 'perfect' mother and/or wife. B) Make it safe to feel that having a baby is exhausting, time for a shower is not always possible, you will feel like a leaking watering can and snacking on yesterdays pizza leftovers is perfectly acceptable! C) To try and squash this competitive notion built between new mothers, about who has got this new mothering malarky in the bag, and accept this is the time in life to fully relax and remove yourself away from the 'superficial' world we live in. Post birth is real! Very real!

But I did get to thinking about the other side of the argument... Within the various conversations going around, someone raised the point that the Duchess was indeed an actress, a very successful one. Used to perhaps a glittering backdrop and a certain level of 'glamour.' Perhaps she felt she needed this and felt very comfortable to do it, maybe even choosing what was to be worn. Who knows! Im not here to speculate on the private lives of the royals. But branching out from that, I feel it is not correct to chastise those new mothers who do feel they need to reach for the Mac concealer and lip gloss on day two, put the baby on a comfy mat for 3 minutes whilst they frantically race for the shower and ask their husbands to straighten the back of their hair whilst they try to attach and reattach baby to their nipple. It is a time where women perhaps, feel the chaos of a new baby and a lack of their own routine, need to snatch a few minutes and 'collect themselves.' That a freshly made up face and blow dry, makes them feel human, brightens their mood, takes their mind off leaking bodily fluids and they feel connected again to the world.

I think, in conclusion, that once again society seems to want to have an opinion on how new mothers 'should' be functioning, when in actual fact there is no written rule! Celebrate the indivualism and that individual's choice. If it keeps the woman happy and brings positive vibes, then it can only be a good thing. If I had my time again, I would probably embrace the tracksuit bottoms with stilleto look.

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