Monday, July 12, 2010

Don't Hate Me Because I liked My C-Section

You heard me right...I liked it.  Wanna fight?  

I kept hearing how terrible c-sections are.  Oh, you do not want to have a c-section.  People always talked about the recovery and how tough it is.  It's surgery after all!  When my grandma told me her first born was breach I asked if she had a c-section, Heavens No! she said, as if I had asked her if she just drank a bottle of gin.  Even I was one of those 'our bodies are meant to do this' type of people who believed in natural birth--although never one to be preachy and to think this was the only way to have a baby.  But still... c-section's were to be avoided it at all costs.  That's all I knew.  

But in the back of my mind, there was a part of me that sorta, kinda wanted a c-section.  I was going to try and go natural again, and had even been reading about and practicing hyponobirthing.  I've had a couple friends who've had some great success with that.  So when the good Dr. told me I was having a c-section--no if's, and's or but's--I was a little relieved.   First, the choice was being made for me.  It took a lot of pressure off.  I don't know about you, but sometimes this birthing business feels like I'm not just choosing a method of birth, but that I'm also making a statement on my entire belief system.  Or at the very least, I put a lot of pressure on myself for a specific outcome and if that isn't achieved I might be disappointed and feel a sense of regret.  Which is stupid.  As long as the baby gets here and my experience isn't too traumatizing, I should just be happy with whatever works right?   So like I said, I was sort of relieved when the decision was made for me--I was having a c-section.  And I was especially excited since it was scheduled early... because that meant no contractions.  No contractions? Cha-ching.  I hit the birthing jack-pot.  

Then I started reading up on c-sections and was getting a little nervous.  The morphine-like drug makes you itch like crazy.  You don't feel pain, but you'll feel a lot of tugging and pulling on your insides, which might even make you feel nauseous and make you throw up.   Be sure to take all the pain meds to stay on top of the pain, otherwise you will pay.  It really hurts the first time you have a bowel movement, so be sure to take the stool softeners.  Even going number 1 can hurt, so make sure you don't wait to go to the bathroom too long, or it will hurt more.  Get up and walk around ASAP to help with will hurt, but in the long run it will really help.  Etc, etc.   As you can see, there was a lot of talk of 'hurt' and 'pain' in of course I was nervous.  But all I kept thinking was, well it's not liking giving birth the first time felt good.  Let's see, going to the bathroom?  Yep, hurts.  Pain meds?  Yep still need them.  Could I even get up and walk around on my own the first day?  Nope.  

So while I feel like a traitor to the whole natural birthing world, I have to say my c-section was kinda awesome.  Not only was I totally numb, they gave me something to calm the nerves and I was a happy little camper.  A spaced out little camper, but happy.  Then as I was laying there waiting for all this tugging and pulling to begin I actually said, Have they started yet?  Everyone sorta looked at me and someone said, Yeah, she's out.  And that was it.  With nary a tug or a pull.  They showed me my baby and commenced stitching me up.  Afterward I kept waiting for the pain to hit, but it never did.  Yes I stayed on top of my meds, but even after a couple of days I would sorta forget and be like, Oh yeah...I need my pain medication.  And whenever the nurses asked me what my pain level was from 1-10 I always said a 2 or a 3, which always felt like a slight exaggeration.  Now one of the biggest reasons I didn't want a c-section was so that I could hold my baby and have some skin on skin time as soon as she was born.  Well since I have Dr. Cool Pants (not his real name) and told him about my wishes he kept them from taking my little angel back to the NICU right away and I got to hold her.  Then I got to snuggle with her on my chest.  YES!  After my c-section!  It was great.   

I know experiences with any method of birth vary greatly.  Regardless of the fact that I had a c-section, I'm just glad it was a good experience.  I know the amount of pain one feels during birth isn't directly related to it necessarily being a good experience, but after the crazy pregnancy I had I just wasn't sure I could handle anything other than a pain-free, no contractions, no pushing, c-section.  For me and for this baby it was the perfect experience.  So there you have it.  C-sections...not so bad! I say.    


  1. Agreed.

    Although, I will always wonder what natural birthing would be like.

    I honestly cherish those few days in the hospital, recovering with my new baby. It's great to be forced to relax and heal and be taken care of.

    I always love the immediate post-surgery period where you're high on tons of drugs, so extremely relaxed, and you feel the relief that your baby is here and everything is over.

    I'm so glad you're doing good, Migs!

  2. Britty--

    I agree--and I meant to talk about that...the 4 day hospital stay. Heaven. I loved it. I was in the hospital overnight with Beanie and did NOT feel ready to come home the next day. I still couldn't walk on my own...but I didn't have any choice. The birthing center only lets you stay overnight. Yes I really, cherished that time in the hospital with just Lamp and I. My Dr. was like "you could probably go home on Sunday...most people get a little cagey by then." And I was like, I think I'll stay the full 4 days. Thanks. Of course it helps when you have a single room....I don't think I could have done that if I were sharing a room.

  3. I concur. Delivery was the best part of my pregnancy and I was in no rush to get out of the hospital. Have a doctor there to check on you and your baby every day, nurses on hand to care for your little one when ever you need a nap, drugs on demand, 100% quiet time with just you and your baby and nothing to worry about.

  4. I agree. Dr. Cool Pants ROCKS!! He is one of the things about the 'Nati that I will grately miss now that we're gone.

    As for 4 day hospital stays...I think that would only be great if you knew in advance that it would be that long! We were there for 4 nights after I had Brian, but the whole time we kept thinking "Today will be the day we go home!" only to be disappointed over and over.

    I'm glad your c/sec experience was a positive one!

  5. I totally get that. With my next one I get to choose c-s or au nautural, and while I think I'll try a vag, it wouldn't take much for me to jump ship. Not much at all...

    Glad you are doing well!

  6. Yeah. C-sections aren't the end of the world. Those first few days after my VBAC, I thought to myself that the c-section recovery was EASIER, but in the end (no pun intended) the VBAC recovery went faster. It was just more painful as ironic as that may be. One of the biggest reasons that I wanted to do my last delivery VBAC (and this shows how out of line my priorities are) is that it is soooooo much CHEAPER.
    C-sections can be nasty too though, so I'm glad that yours has gone so smoothly.

  7. true, not the end of the world but uggg. i couldn't walk without pain for about 4 weeks. i hope your recovery is better than mine

  8. Lyndal6:01 AM

    I've been waiting to read your thoughts on C-section vs Natural Birth - I opted for a C-section with the birth of my daughter last year, simply because I was TERRIFIED of giving Natural Birth. I often have feelings of guilt - that maybe I should have at least tried the Natural route. Thanks for your insight, makes me feel a lot better about my decision! Congrats on the birth of your little one - she is too gorgeous :)
    Lyndal {S.Africa}

  9. i am really loving hearing your perspective on this whole thing. you're rocking my world with your awesomeness yet again. but that doesn't surprise me a bit. i think i have felt quite similarly about the whole birthing thing, and i find that the longer it takes for kids to arrive, the less concerned i feel about how they get here.

  10. I completely agree. I'm glad everything went well. Everyone seems to hate c sections because they aren't "natural" but if you have to have one, take it! It's not so bad! (;

  11. Ooooh, I LOVE c-sections. Yep, you heard me...LU-RVE THEM! I don't know what all the hype is either, because I've had 2 and I'm ready for another...easiest thing ever, not so fond of "the shelf"...but after all my babes get here, can you say "plastic surgery" make my saggy boobs and shelf tummy go away...but easiest recovery ever. Everyone was so amazed I was up walking around, out strolling all 3 of my babes around the end of that week...seriously, why is there such a stigma with them? Well, glad to see someone agree with me...AMEN!