‘It took me six months to feel normal again’
LISA Wilkinson spoke candidly about her own experiences of motherhood on The Project last night, revealing that it took her six months "to feel normal again" after the birth of her first child.
The co-host's comments came after the panel had spoken about the incidence of PTSD in new mothers who experience difficult births, speaking to Amy Dawes, co-founder of the Australasian Birth Trauma Association.
As the interview finished, Wilkinson opened up about her own experiences as a mother-of-three.
"There's so much as a woman about giving birth that's just a completely open book," she said.
"I remember sitting in my very first birthing class, [husband] Pete [FitzSimons] and I, and the midwife said, 'One in four of you will have a caesarean.' I remember looking around and thinking, 'Gee, I wonder who'll have that?'" she recalled - not realising it would be her.
"And guess who had a caesarean, 26-hour labour, emergency caesar, knocked out with a general anaesthetic? It took me six months before I felt normal again," she said.
Co-host Waleed Aly asked Wilkinson in what way she didn't feel "normal" after the birth.
"In every single way. There's so much about it you don't anticipate, but talking about it and sharing those experiences is so important - it makes all the difference."
Wilkinson has previously opened up about her own experience of miscarriage, warning women approaching 40 not to wait to fall pregnant thinking they will be able to have children.
Wilkinson had three failed pregnancies after she turned 40, when she and husband Peter FitzSimons were trying for a fourth child, she revealed in a Huffington Post column published last year.
She said nothing prepared her for the sadness she experienced, which still "haunts" her.
"At 11 weeks I started to bleed. An ultrasound confirmed the worst. That tiny little person I could see on the monitor wasn't moving. There was no heartbeat," Wilkinson wrote.
"That precious little baby I was so looking forward to meeting hadn't made it past eight weeks.
"So, six months later, we tried again … But it happened again, with almost exactly the same timeline. And another six months later, again.
"As my gynaecologist gently told us, it was nature's way of saying my eggs were just too old."
Wilkinson and FitzSimons have three children together - Jake, 23, Louis, 21 and Billi, 20.