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Giving birth can be a terrifying thought. There are so many emotions and feelings that are experienced before the big day. Being fearful is normal. However, the joy you will have when it is all over will be worth it.
I want to share with you all my personal experience having a c-section. I have had two c-sections and will explain my experience with both and hopefully will ease your mind with precisely what to expect during the process.
With my first pregnancy, I had high blood pressure in my last trimester. My blood pressure never seemed to get better, and I had to be induced early. I was in the room and given Pitocin to induce my labor. I intended on having a vaginal delivery. However, it did not work out that way. After being given the medication of Pitocin, there was no progress made. My son had not dropped enough for them to break my water and I was not dilating at all. After a day of this, I was given the option to do a C-section. I was worried about the baby, so I opted for the c-section.
My first experience, unfortunately, was a bad one for the reason that I had to be put to sleep for it and I was not able to bond with my baby immediately after. They tried to do a spinal tap. However, it did not work. Everything seemed rushed at this point, and it seemed like they gave up on trying to administer the spinal tap. I learned about that speaking with an anesthesiologist the second time. More effort could have been put in, but there was not, so I was put to sleep. I did not want to be put to sleep like one; it is just a scary experience. We all dread having that type of anesthesia as we think the worst, like what if I never wake up again and two I wanted to bond with my baby immediately after. My birth plan at that point was worthless; luckily I have a fantastic significant other that still made some of the things I wanted for myself possible such as doing skin to skin and bonding immediately after as well as participating in bathing our baby. I wanted to see my baby hold my baby and begin breastfeeding. I wanted it all, and I missed out on all of that. When I was put to sleep, they put the mask on me, and I remember giving them a hard time, as I wanted my significant other in there with me, but they said he could not come in at that point and we needed to rush through this process for the safety of the baby. When mentioning the safety of my baby, I began counting as they asked me to. I only remember counting to five, and I was out.
I was told by my partner that I was in recovery for about 30 minutes before I was wheeled back to my room. I remember coming to and asking for my baby and asking if my baby was ok. My baby was perfect. He was beautiful and healthy and weighing 6 lbs 7 oz.
My second experience was much better as it was a planned c-section. I was scheduled for 7:30 a.m. on for my c-section and had to arrive two hours before that. We arrived at 5:30 a.m. and once we arrived I was put into the room on which I would be staying for the next couple days or so. The first thing they did was look at my stomach and shave the area where I would be getting my c-section with an electric razor. I was then given the IV which they tape on wherever you get it. It stayed in for about a day. I was told since a lot of blood is lost during a c-section, I would need to have plenty of fluids through the IV. The IV was also used to administer the pain medication as well.
Once the IV was given, and one bag of fluids was in me, I was given a catheter. The Catheter did not hurt when it was put it in. It burned for a second, and that was it. I was then given more fluids through my IV. My blood pressure was being monitored, and they also had me on a monitor to monitor the baby as well.
I began getting more nervous as it was getting closer to the time to have the c-section. I felt much better about this one than the first c-section since this was planned. I met with an anesthesiologist the night before and explained my first situation and how I really wanted to be awake for this one and she assured me that 95% of the time the spinal taps work and not to worry that I would be able to be awake for this.
I was able to walk back to the operating room and sat up on the table. Everything was much better this time around. My doctor was there and was very supportive. She stood right in front of me and allowed me to squeeze her shoulders as it hurt and was uncomfortable. I had to hunch over a certain way and stay that way until they were able to get it in. When he was putting the needle in, I would feel a sharp shooting pain, and he asked me where I felt it, if it was more in the right, left or center. There was a lot of poking and prodding going on. I heard the anesthesiologist say he needed a bigger needle after I have been poked and prodded more than a few times. I remember thinking I just wanted the spinal tap to work and just wanted it to be over with. The first spinal tap I tried to get with my first pregnancy made me feel sick to my stomach that I started dry heaving. This second time around however that did not happen. I did feel nauseous once the spinal tap was in, however. I did not vomit or anything however they put a bag close to your mouth just in case. It took about 20 minutes to get the spinal tap in successfully which felt much longer than that.
Once the spinal worked successfully and was in, they went and got my significant other so he can be there with me. My doctor began testing my skin to make sure it was working and that I could not feel anything. The anesthesiologist was awesome. She was explaining everything that was happening to me and was encouraging me along the way as well. The anesthesiologist explained that she was using sharp tweezers to test the area.
Now it was showtime. The doctor cut me open, and after that, there was a lot of pulling and tugging that I was feeling and it slightly hurt a bit. My stomach felt like it was aching badly. It was also just an uncomfortable feeling. Once this was all going on, I still felt a little nauseous in the very beginning. That wore off maybe 10 minutes into it. In fact, I believe once they had my baby out, the nausea wore off from the anesthesia. It surely does help when you have a partner there to hold their hand and be supportive of you during the process, as well as excellent staff members that are in the room giving encouraging words as well.
My baby was out 10 minutes after being cut open once she was out my doctor showed her to me putting her over the curtain. Everything I had just felt was worth seeing her and being able to hold her and start breastfeeding her. I was ready for the process to be over with so I can hold my baby. The anesthesiologist was explaining everything they were doing. She stated how they were placing everything back and finishing up. It was quick getting the baby out however the last bit of finishing up the c-section felt like it took forever but in actuality, it was only 15-20 minutes from there, and they were stapling me up. I could hear the staple gun being used and once that was done the c-section was complete.
The nurses wheeled me back to my room, and I was able to hold my baby. I was drifting in and out of sleep due to the medication they had given me through my IV once the baby was out. I remember being extremely tired that first half of the day due to the medication.
Just remember what labor is all about. Think about your beautiful baby. Everything we endure is worth it all to just see and hold your baby for the first time. You will be scared, excited, joyful, and ready when that time comes. You will be anxious. It is all completely normal.
I wanted to share my experiences with you to let you know what I went through and what you can possibly expect when you get your c-section. It is not that bad and is probably better than having a vaginal delivery. I am coming up to my 6-week checkup soon, and I will also make a post on the recovery process and what to expect with that. If there are any questions you may have or if there is anything I can help you with during the process, please feel free to comment or email me. I wish you a speedy, healthy, happy delivery and baby!
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