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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

5 reasons not to be afraid of C sections

This is a post I wrote for MOMquery last month and wanted to share here on my personal blog. A c section is usually no one's Plan A, it sure as heck wasn't mine, but I embrace my birth story and don't want mamas to be to be afraid of them! P.S. Are you following MOMquery on Facebook?

1. They are safe

Modern medicine continues to blow me away. Embryos and sperm and united in petri dishes and carried by surrogates. We have the ability to see babies in 4D and fight over whose nose he has. And hearts are transplanted from one body to another. Incredible. Medicine has come such a long way and I am so confident in the knowledge and practices of today's doctors, especially the one I carefully researched and chose. These doctors know what they are doing, this is their job. Just like as a full time mommy I feel like I could change a diaper or make a cheese quesadilla in my sleep, doctors perform C sections every day and continue to advance their skills and abilities. Anesthesia won't damage your baby's brain, come on, Ford turned out fine. An epidural won't kill ya, millions of women get them every year. Thank you God for modern medicine!

2. They are quick

Labor is called labor for a reason, it is work! My first delivery started with a long, painful induction and ended in a full surgery cesarean. It definitely wasn't your traditional birth story. So yes there are times when a C section comes after a grueling 24 hour labor but the actual surgery is quick. My baby was out within 2 minutes of being wheeled into the OR. It seems like a dream knowing that this next baby I am carrying will be born without labor, without a contraction, without the anxiety of thinking of pushing something out of my lady bits. I will show up and an hour later meet my baby. Is this real life?

3. You will feel normal again

Just because a C section is quick, does not mean it comes without pain. Now I've never experienced a vaginal delivery but the recovery from a C section is rough. It's the one time in your life where you experience MAJOR surgery and are immediately required to be up around the clock feeding, changing, getting acquainted with this strange little human that just came out of you. There is not a grace period with C sections, you have to jump right back into motherhood. I remember telling people that I could totally deal with the sleep deprivation, it was the C section recovery that had me in tears every night. It took me 5 minutes just to get out of bed in the mornings and I hobbled hunchback around my house. But then the 3 week mark hit and I felt like a human again. Each day after that I regained strength and muscle memory and my spirits sky rocketed knowing I wouldn't forever feel like my insides had been ripped apart. It gives me the chills to think back to those first few days post surgery but I am reminded how incredible the human body is at repairing and recovering. Besides my incision scar, I can honestly say it feels like it never happened.

4. No damage to your lady parts

Do I have to go into detail? Ha! I mean, a C section is no one's plan A but I spent a lot of time finding green pastures in the middle of a traumatic and painful part of my life. I don't suddenly pee my pants when I jump up and down or feel where stitches used to be while being intimate with my husband. Sure I get numb around my incision occasionally (what a weird sensation) but I am proud to say that my lady parts experienced no trauma, tearing, or damage while delivering. That's good for something, right?!

5. You were made for this

One of the most discouraging things I heard post emergency C section was women apologizing to me that I had to have one and that I didn't get to experience "real" birth. First my uterus was cut open and a baby ripped out, now my heart was ripped out. Ouch. I feel so blessed to live in a time where I lived through the birth of my son. 50, 100 years ago, I don't think that would have been the case. The female body was made to grow and birth a baby and that is exactly what I did. I don't feel like I missed out on anything because I didn't pop a baby out through my vagina and I sure as heck don't feel like less of a woman for it. I actually feel like a gladiator. I did it! I never even thought my barely 5 foot framed body could carry a baby full term, let alone overdue. No matter how the baby comes out, we did it! What a feat!


The Sweetest Moments...... said...

I've had four C-sections the first 16 years ago, after 47 hours of labor, 4 of which were spent pushing, and the last 4 years ago. I can assure you, planned C-section recoveries are far better. Your body has not gone through the exhausting process of labor.

As a mom who has delivered all of my children this way, I've never felt like I missed out of giving birth. Congrats on your new bundle.

Emilie said...

I don't think there should be a stigma against c-section deliveries - they exist for a reason! All that matters is the outcome: healthy momma and baby!!! It seems silly that there are mommy "wars" over EVERYTHING from diapers (cloth v. disposable), feeding (breastfeeding v. formula), sleeping (co-sleeping v. not), to delivery ("natural" v. cesarean) etc. etc.

I had a vaginal delivery but would never make a comment to a woman about her c-section being "traumatic' or "unnatural". Birth itself is traumatic!! But it is also natural - regardless of how it happened! :)

The girls said...

"No matter how the baby comes out, we did it!"

That line right there is awesome. I would never think of judging someone for having a c-section. Yeah, I was "lucky" enough to have two "normal" births. But oh, preeclampsia, high blood pressure, failed epidurals, and stitches made it traumatizing. Makes me wonder what it would've been like to be on the other side of the fence. Modern medicine is a fantastic thing.

Jessie said...

Thanks for this! Some think c-sections are so much easier, not true. I had a very similar birth story like you: over 20+ hrs labor, induced, all back labor, then had to have c-section so my son would be ok. Then the recovery part was so hard! Months and months of pain hard to bend or carry the car seat, ouch. But all worth it! Thanks for this. My son is now 3 and I'm scared to have another c-section because I remember the long recovery so well! Hope the second time around is easier! Would love to hear how your recovery is the second time around! Thanks for your story!

Maggie said...

I agree with the above ladies! A planned c-section is WAAAAAAAY better than one after a grueling labor situation. I have since had an unplanned vaginal delivery, as you know :) My lady bits will never be the same. So there are absolutely pros and cons to both ways of birthing. Neither makes you more or less of a mother. Little Lucy Joy will be perfect and she will love her mama no matter what way she comes out. Eek! Babies!!!!!

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