Why I Will Wear Makeup During Labor
During pregnancy (and parenting), you will find everyone has an opinion on what is “the right thing to do,” and the tricky part is: those people are probably right – when it comes to their own experience! Ever since I have become a mom, I have noticed the pressure that many moms feel to be continually completely selfless, yet maintain who they were before they had kids. But what does that really look like?
Since each baby and pregnancy is different, each delivery story is different, too. Even so, I’ve realized that a few things are universally important: listen to your intuition and do what is healthy and right for your particular situation. Here are two reasons why I am planning on wearing makeup (and probably doing my hair!) when I have my baby boy (I’m actually 40 weeks pregnant as I type this).
Labor is hard to actually plan for. The last weeks of pregnancy are unlike the first eight and a half months of pregnancy for many reasons. Suddenly, a sense of urgency sets in. Apart from the nesting instinct, you will feel overwhelmed a lot by all of the unknowns. Having a baby is one of the few important days in life that you are also not entirely sure about when it may actually arrive. Since every woman’s body is so unique, there are many variables that make labor unpredictable. Something I find really calming in the days while I wait to go into labor is continuing to do my morning routine: doing my makeup and hair and throwing on whatever cute sweater still fits at this point! Chances are, if I go into labor during the daytime, I will be wearing makeup, my hair will be curled, and I will be wearing that cute sweater that still fits.
Pregnancy is 10 months of selfless love. Pregnancy requires you to give of yourself over and over, all the while hoping you are making the right choices. Like parenting, it’s full of opportunity to self-doubt and can it can be easy to feel guilty for every small decision you make. What foods are truly safe to eat? Am I being active enough? Or too active? Am I gaining the healthy amount of weight I should be? Or too much? How many onesies should I have on hand? Is the nursery temperature optimal for a sleeping baby? The questions go on. You’ll probably use Google more than you ever have in all your years combined during those 10 months, and it’s all because you care that much. That being said, it becomes easy to feel guilty for doing anything that isn’t self-sacrificing. In the trenches, it’s easy to forget that you are not only a mom, but a woman who is a mom. Taking care of yourself is beneficial to your pregnancy (and to motherhood). When you feel good and healthy, your baby does too. Taking time to pamper yourself and do things that make the journey more enjoyable is not something to feel guilty about, it’s a part of a healthy and thriving pregnancy.
You can only continue to give if you are sustaining yourself as well, and part of that for me is to not let go of the things that make me feel beautiful and keep me calm. Everyone’s version of this is different. If that means taking a bubble bath every night or playing Taylor Swift albums on repeat in the delivery room, than you do you! Taking care of yourself sets a wonderful example for your kids to do the same someday, so do it in whatever capacity suits you. Throughout the stages, don’t be afraid to let your light shine. It will most certainly liberate others to do the same.
P.s. here is my labor and delivery story!