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c-section: taking the easy way out

April 18, 2012
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After reading this post, please click the badge above to be taken to a list of The Good, Bad and Ugly posts. (pregnancy, childbirth and the first years) 

Welcome to my c-section. No, I don't have a video, although I did request to watch the procedure- we'll get to that. 

PREGNANCY 
During my pregnancy, everyone told me they hope I don't have a c-section, yet none of those people had ever had a c-section. We are lead to believe that having a c-section is bad, not because it is a surgery, but because it's not natural childbirth. 

Yes, some people schedule c-sections so they don't have to deal with labor and natural childbirth.That, I think is stupid. 

In the back of my mind I thought I would probably end up with a c-section because I knew I would gain a lot of weight, Travis and I were both big babies, so Brady probably would be too.  

I cannot express how sick of hearing "I hope you don't have a c-section," especially after people found out I was going to be induced. I didn't give a shit at that point how my child got here, I just wanted him here safe and with Travis still by my side. As much as I want to piss these people off when they get pregnant, I will make it a priority to never say "I hope... (insert stupid here)"

LABOR

I was a swollen, uncomfortable mess my entire pregnancy

I was induced with 0 progress 10 days before Brady's due date so that Travis could be here for the birth before he deployed (I was due on deployment day). More details are in the birth story, but the entire time I was in the hospital, people were texting me and writing on my Facebook that they hope I didn't have a c-section. Why? Why do you care if I have one or not? Are you going to think less of me? It's not my decision. 

The nurses told me to have a c-section at 8 p.m. on Valentine's Day. Honestly, I wanted to wait and see if I would progress, plus I didn't want my son to have a lame Halmark holiday as his birthday. 

Per Brady's Birth Story: 
Throughout the night it went from them telling me I would have to have a c-section and me telling them to wait 2 more hours, then they would say I’m on the right track again and back and forth, back and forth- I was a wreck, I was so upset and did not want to have a c-section. I knew being induced early could lead to a c-section, but I was determined to have a vaginal birth. At 5:00 a.m. I was an 8 and sooo excited! I wanted to find the doctor and tell him to suck it! then the nurse came in, she checked me around 6 and said that I wasn’t progressing, my water had broken so long ago and they can’t prove that I will dilate to a 10 anytime soon, so she was off to call Dr. Musinski. Dr. Musinski was shocked that I still was in labor and he said that it was time, the kid is coming out, regardless. They told me I would have a baby in my arms by 9 a.m. and that I was having a c-section. I held it together and listened to what they had to say. Once they left the room, I didn’t make eye contact with Travis and I stared at the ceiling. I cussed a few times, blamed myself, blamed deployment and I’m sure I said some other nonsense. I rolled onto my left side to try to get comfortable and I lost it, I was bawling. Travis came over and sat with me and held me as I tried to pull it together very quick since I knew the nurses would be back to prep me. It wasn’t about ruining my plan of a vaginal birth at this point, I was scared. I do fine with surgery and that wasn’t the problem, Travis was leaving in a few weeks and all of our family is in Michigan. Yes, I have wives I’m friends with and people I can call if I need something, but I don’t have our family. A baby, stairs, 2 dogs and major abdominal surgery….I’m doomed! What am I going to do? How am I going to take care of my baby? How am I going to trust the dogs? How am I even going to clean my house? I was freaking out. Travis and I didn’t say much, if anything at all.
The nurses came back and tried to be witty and cheer me up, it was annoying. Travis put on the sexy gear he had to wear into the OR and off I went to the OR. They wheeled me down the hall and I kissed Travis by. (he would come in the OR after they prepped me). 

C-SECTION
You think I got the easy way out of childbirth? Think again. While you were screaming through contractions and having a child come out of your vagina, I was experiencing something else. Here's another clip from Brady's Birth Story (I'm crying just thinking about it):


I lay on the OR table trying to keep it together, they thought I was scared to have surgery, I could care less about the surgery, I asked if I could watch, they said no. I was crying because of the uncertainty of afterwards. The curtain went up and Travis came in.

Dr. Musinski and whoever else was behind the curtain started the c-section. I started screaming. I felt my body shaking back and forth and fluids sloshing around, but that’s not why I was screaming. I had the most excruciating pain in my right shoulder. I wasn’t allowed to move my arms because they were out to the side on the table, I wanted to try to move my shoulder to make it feel better, but now I realize even if I could move it, it wouldn’t have helped. They put oxygen on me because I was screaming bloody murder, breathing heavy and crying my heart out. I can’t describe the pain, they might as well have been sawing off my shoulder with no anesthesia, that’s what it felt like, I guess. 

I later learned that that, my friends, is called referred pain. Everything that was going on in my numbed and drugged abdomen, I was feeling in my right shoulder. No, you don't get it. I FELT THE ENTIRE PROCEDURE IN MY RIGHT SHOULDER. Some people have pain in their shoulders days after the c-section. Not me.


A COUPLE OF HOURS THROUGH 4 DAYS AFTER
I was in so much pain and had so much morphine in me that I needed assistance holding him for the first time. I couldn't nurse him for his first 'meal' because I was a big bowl of Jello that didn't know what the hell was going on and thought I was dying. It killed me even more that I couldn't spend the first few minutes or hour with my baby.

I spent the next 2 1/2 days getting pain killers in my IV every hour. Heat packs lived on my right shoulder. When I was full of drugs, my shoulder didn't hurt, but dare I even try to move, because now I was experiencing muscle pain in my abdomen. Where the actual incision was just felt sore, no big deal. About 2 inches left of the incision, I felt a pain that I cannot describe. It felt like burning, tearing, ripping and stabbing if I tried to move. I had a catheter in for 2 more days, it was taken out the day before I left the hospital so I could get used to going to the bathroom. I had to set a timer to go to the bathroom every 2 hours because my insides were so jacked I had no idea if I had to go to the bathroom or not.

Shoulder, abdomen and bladder problems aside, I had to have my uterus checked every few hours. Not internally, but the nurses came in and pushed on my stomach to make sure my uterus was in the right place and that it was shrinking and whatever else it needed to do.

3 days after Brady was born, they somehow got me out of bed and into the bathroom where I took my first shower. I'll leave the blood and guts details aside, this is supposed to be about the c-section and not childbirth in general.

Not only was I wearing the massive pads that everyone wears after birth, but i had to wear a gigantic maxi pad on my incision so that it did not get wet, my underwear and pants didn't rub on the incision. I was so sexy.  Speaking of the incision, how the hell did my child fit through that? Maybe it was like my plastic surgeon told me after my boob job "it's like shoving a bean bag chair through a keyhole" umm...

4 days later, we went home. We stayed an extra couple of days because I was miserable, I couldn't move and I figured I might as well stay and get the help while I can. The hospital food was actually good and my baby was a good baby, so we hung out in the hospital for a few days. 

1 HOUR - 3 WEEKS AFTER 
sleeping and nursing is about all I was good for for 3 weeks. 
Travis deployed when Brady was 3 weeks and 1 day old. I was so happy to have him home that long, we thought he would've left a lot sooner. Everyone else actually deployed a couple of days after Brady was born, so we were lucky he got to stay behind. 

I didn't change a diaper until Brady was 3 weeks old. I couldn't bend over, even looking down hurt my stomach. I had to wear some wrap thing that went around me to help shrink my uterus, but it also helped with the pain, by putting pressure on the incision. I had to use a pillow to get out of bed or off the couch or a chair- hug the shit out of it at the incision site and put as much pressure as possible to be able to stand up without it hurting as much. 

My incision site was numb for a few months, it felt super weird but it didn't bother me. 
hanging out at the salon
I was still sore when Travis left but I'm superwoman and I got through it. Brady was such a good baby, lucky me! 

8 weeks after Brady was born I was given the green light to work out. How the hell do people work out 8 weeks after a c-section. Things were still sore and felt really weird down there. I didn't want to be one of those dumbasses who overdoes it and literally bursts open. Oh did I offend you? I don't care- EVERYONE told you not to do too much. I was too tired to workout, I was the only one taking care of us, I had no help. I had no breaks. Nursing was my workout. 

1 YEAR LATER
1 year later I can bend over- haha I felt fine after a few weeks. The incision is still there, there is no numbness or pain and it's low enough that no one will ever see it. I still don't understand how my kid came out of there... 

Please don't tell anyone "I hope you don't have a c-section." Even after having one, I'm not going to tell someone that. Looking back, I'm glad my vag wasn't torn apart :) However your child gets out of your body doesn't matter- just get that kiddo in your arms, that's all that matters. 

People who have c-sections do not get the easy way out. The chick who is in labor for an hour and pushes twice has the easy way out. Kidding. No one has the easy way out. 

Just think about what you say and how it can be perceived when talking to others. 



5 comments:

  1. HEYYY I remember you in labor saying you better not have to have a c section! :)

    I dont think a c section is an easy way out either. It might be quicker and you dont always have to go through labor but afterwards I imagine being a lot harder to recover from.

    Why does it bother you when people say they hope you dont have one? It is a major surgery and I would never want any of my friends to have to deal with going through a major surgery.

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  2. You're right- I did say I didn't want to have one- I wanted to do it how it is 'supposed' to be done, but i knew going in with 0 progress and being induced that it would probably end in a c-section so i was just hoping it wouldn't.

    of course no one wants their friend to have surgery, but i should've been more clear. people were saying it as if it is a bad thing, not because it is a surgery, but because it's not something you're supposed to have- do you know what i mean? they gave the vibe they would think less of me or something if i had one- it's kind of hard to explain

    after 40 hours of labor, the last thing i wanted was a c-section.

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  3. My sister's first was an emergency c-section 5 days past her due date (niece spent 4 days in NICU w/collapsed lungs & breathing issues, cord had been wrapped around her tummy and neck, so way she would have come out vaginally!) and then her second was a scheduled c-section 3 days after her due-date (he's almost 3mos old now!) she certainly did not have an "easy" time with either of them!

    I'm one of the "lucky" ones I think... I pushed for about an hour with Goose and she was delivered drug-free (not because I'm a masochist, things just happened so quickly there wasn't time for drugs!) but I'm hoping that I'll get lucky again this time around... although we're discussing inducing me 3 days before I'm due (4 weeks from today!) because my primary (and favorite!) OB is deploying the following week and she's in the hospital that weekend before... hopefully it doesn't end up as being a c-section, I don't want to have to recover from the pushing AND the surgery like you did!!

    you rock lady. just sayin'

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  4. Woah! What a story! Not sure what else to say here, but I didn't want to read and not comment. :) I had a "natural" birth with my son, but there were so many complications that I try not to talk about it. I'm glad your son is healthy and well, and that you have him to care for while your husband is deployed. It's hard, I know, but I'm still glad you have each other.

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  5. Kudos for what you wrote! My daughter is going to be 4 and I still get people every now and then telling me how lucky I was to not have to go through the pain of labor...really? So, getting cut open and recovering from that, while taking care of a newborn doesn't hurt or count as much as pushing a baby out of your vagina?! After 2 years of trying to get pregnant, 2 miscarriages, and finding out my body sucks at making babies, my OB pressured me into a scheduled c-section. She said that my daughter was going to be well over 10 lbs and if I delivered naturally, her shoulders might break or be dislocated. I was already sure she would die before I even got to her due date and was terrified to lose another baby...so I had the surgery. She's going to be our one and only because my body sucks. I know I'll always mourn her birth, though she's here and healthy. Oh, and my OB was SO WRONG! She was a long and lean 7lbs 13oz and 21.5 inches...coulda woulda shoulda...

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