I am now 2 weeks post-partum. M was born on April 10, a beautiful baby girl. From when I woke up that morning having contractions (early labor) to when I delivered was maybe 12 hours at the most. I went into labor on my own without being induced and was able to go all natural without any pain medication or epidural or anything, just the way I wanted it. From the time I was admitted to the hospital at 6cm and 100% effaced to when I delivered was only 3 1/2 hours and I only pushed for about 5 minutes. I had one small tear that didn't even require any stitches. I honestly can not think of anything I would change about my experience. It was so totally and completely different from last time.
Post-partum has been totally different as well. 10 minutes after she was born, I felt better than I did 10 days after I delivered E. And when I say that, I mean it in more ways than one: physically, mentally, and emotionally. In the last 2 weeks, that has stayed the norm. I have consistently felt better than I did last time. I actually sometimes do more than I should and push myself harder than I should because I feel so much better, it's hard to remember to take it slow and be nice to my body.
This time, I don't have the insane mood swings. I don't cry all the time. I think I've cried once, maybe twice, since I gave birth, and that was because there was some stuff going on that would have made me cry even if I hadn't been pregnant, post-partum, PMS'ing, or had any other type of hormonal weirdness going on. I don't want to just stay home all the time. I don't want to just seclude myself constantly. I have found myself being so much more interested in what's going on around me and who's around me, more interested in both my daughters, wanting to take care of them and play with them. I don't feel like I'm in a haze constantly.
I'm not sure how much of the difference is due to the fact that this time I'm not taking anything stronger than Ibuprofen for pain (last time I was on Percocet for 2 weeks), I'm not nearly as tired b/c my labor wasn't nearly as long and hard, I'm not upset about how my childbirth experience went, my thyroid is under control, and I'm not fighting PPD (last time I think I had the PPD really really really early on).
I am living proof that just because you have one horrible birth doesn't mean you have to have another, just because you have to be induced once doesn't mean you have to be induced next time, and just because you have PPD with one baby from day 1 doesn't mean you have to repeat that with the next one. I know that I'm not out of the woods yet. I could still end up with PPD. I'm aware of that, my family and friends are aware. We are all keeping an eye out for symptoms that things are going bad. But for now, everything is fine and I choose to believe that things will stay fine and that I will not have to deal with PPD again. If I do I do and we'll cross that bridge if we come to it, but for now I choose to live in the moment, enjoy the victories, enjoy my time with my family, and look forwards with anticipation to the great things to come.