Sharing My Own C-Section Experience
Not everyone has a C-Section experience, but I have decided to share mine.
Scared, Uneasy, but Ready for this New Experience
After unsuccessful attempts to encourage our baby to turn by acupuncture, moxibustion, and ECV, my midwife told us that he was still in a breech position. Considering there are very few doctors willing to assist in a breech birth in our area, that it would be best to book me in for a c-section in a couple of weeks time, a few days before my due date. My C-section experience was a new experience for me, I had hoped for things to be much more natural.
I didn’t want to have a c-section, I wanted to give birth the way nature intended, the way my body was designed to. The thought of undergoing serious abdominal surgery terrified me… But the thought of putting myself and my baby in danger by opting to attempt a breech birth that may end in emergency surgery anyway scared me more, so we agreed to book a date.
Over the next week or so I had appointments with nurses, anesthesiologists, and more to prepare me for my Caesarean section and as time went by I became more comfortable with the idea. It didn’t occur to me to do any research for myself on what to expect before, during, and after our son’s birth as I felt we were being so well informed about it all.
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The Big Day, My Hospital Experience
The day of my surgery came and our baby was still sitting stubbornly upright so I was admitted to the hospital and spent hours waiting, being checked and prepped, and waiting some more. My partner was with me the entire time, leaving only to move our car to a longer parking spot!
Finally, I was wheeled into the operating room and hooked up to all sorts of monitors, then sat up to have a spinal block administered. That was a strange feeling but it didn’t hurt and it started working immediately. My feet were put up and a sheet was raised just under my chest but I could see my belly reflected in the light above me. When I mentioned that to my partner, someone re-positioned the light. The anesthesiologist checked that the spinal block was working. He did this by touching ice blocks to my body. Once he was happy I was sufficiently numb, they got to work.
Here Comes Baby!
It turned out that our little guy was jammed in under my ribs so the next couple of minutes were a bit uncomfortable as my abdomen was squashed and squeezed like a toothpaste tube to maneuver him out, but my partner was by my side stroking my hair throughout. I heard our baby before I saw him, my partner was urged by our midwife to stand up to see him and I burst into tears as they lifted him over the sheet into view.
He was taken to a nearby table where he was rubbed to clean and invigorate him. My partner cut his umbilical cord, then he was wrapped up and brought to me to snuggle on my chest while I was stitched up. At this point, I started to feel ill from drugs. I didn’t realize at first, as I was so overwhelmed with love. It was only when my partner asked about my strange breathing that I said anything about it and I was given medication to ease nausea.
As soon as I was stitched up we were moved to a recovery room where our baby was laid naked in my bare chest. I was then encouraged to let him nurse. He found his goal straight away and after having a drink, he cuddled into me and peed on me! We all stayed in there a while, we received gift baskets and phone calls in that time. When I look back on my c-section experience now, I realize how hazy the drugs had made me as it’s all a bit blurry. I do remember feeling very itchy, especially on my face, but feeling quite comfortable with our baby.
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Proud of My Birth Experience
It was an extremely surreal experience. I realize now how lucky I was to have everything go just as I expected to see as I didn’t take any steps to make sure of that. I still hope to give birth vaginally one day but I don’t regret my C-Section at all. It was the best thing for my safety and our baby’s, especially considering he was stuck in there! I’m not a huge fan of taking any drugs but what they had to give me wasn’t too bad aside from mild nausea and itching.
Our midwife, student midwife, and everyone else involved with my c-section experience was amazing. I’m so glad we live in a place where that kind of care is not only available but is the norm and is completely free. I felt doubly lucky that day to live where I live and to give birth to a healthy baby, even if wasn’t the way I’d hoped.
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