Fourth Trimester, what?? I thought there were only three? It's kind of like the whole, oh you're only pregnant for 9 months - LIE - its TEN!!!
So, what is it these people call the fourth trimester? Essentially it's the first 3 months that the baby is alive. I don't think I need to give you the whole scientific answer for what it is, but you can just think of it as the "most fun you will ever have". Cough, Cough....
I feel like everyone tells you what every single step of pregnancy is going to be like, but no one tells you what it's going to be like to care for a newborn 24 hours a day with little to no sleep. There's no class that could prepare you for this even if you wanted to. Now don't get me wrong I love my son more than anything in the whole world, but learning to take care of him is one of the hardest things I've ever done.
Before you have the baby everyone talks about labor and how scary/painful that's going to be, again LIE! I took all the drugs that I possibly could and giving birth was like going to the spa for a few days. The baby was an absolute angel in the hospital, I don't even think we heard him cry except for a few times. About an hour after getting home the baby is crying and I'm already wondering what in the hell I'm going to do... Diaper change, check! Full tummy, check! Burped, check! Now what? Maybe I should check his diaper again, maybe he's still hungry? Wait maybe he's just tired?? I mean why would a baby cry when they're tired, they should just go to sleep... Haha, we all know this isn' true!
Okay, so let me get to the part about how I survived the first 3 months of my sons life! The first 6 weeks are Pure Survival Mode. Do what you need to survive... If the house is a mess, so what; if dinner isn't on the table when your husband gets home from work, oh well; if you haven't showered in 3 (I mean 5) plus days just add dry shampoo and deodorant you'll feel like a new person; if the cats haven't been played with for a few weeks, tough luck! When the baby sleeps, you sleep - DO NOT waiver on this one!
I also found it really hard to find time to eat and when you are breastfeeding you HAVE to! Buy things that are really easy to grab and eat with one hand. Larabars, Cliff bars, pre-cut fruits and veggies (aka starburst jelly beans & rolos), pre-packaged snacks, basically anything that doesn't require any work...I literally think I survived on granola bars for the first 2 months except for when someone would bring me lunch or I actually was awake enough to cook one of the frozen meals I had made prior to having the baby. You MUST find time to eat, my pediatrician said I should be eating at least 2,500 calories per day which I found to be really difficult!
Try to get out of the house by yourself at least once a week, even if it's only for 15 minutes to take a walk around the block. Being home all day everyday with a baby can take a toll on you mentally and physically and mommy needs break every now and then, even if you think you don't!
Just know that everything with a newborn is temporary. If something is really difficult one day just remember it's only a phase and this too shall pass!