Hello everyone! I’m blogging from my hospital bed on the last full day of our stay before heading home with our new girl. It’s sort of a little vacation in here, with a private room, nurses to take care of me, and a nursery for my girl to sleep in at night. It’s definitely been nice to not be woken up by a toddler in the wee hours of the morning for at least a few days! Big D is on a little vacation of his own, spending a few days with my parents doing all kinds of fun stuff in addition to visiting us every day.
Without further delay, here I am 24 hours after surgery, rather sore and tired with my two fabulous little ones:
But let’s get to the point of this post: my scheduled c-section. If you’ve been reading for a while (or know me in real life) you know that Big D came into the world nearly 11 days past his due date, via an unplanned c-section due to failure to progress (I never made it past 5cm). He was also head-down but face-up, and got stuck – not a safe situation. When I got pregnant with Lil C (as she’ll be known here – you know, like the judge on SYTYCD), my OBGYN didn’t want to mess around so we scheduled a c-section for 5 days before her due date.
I was fine with this decision. I’m a natural planner, and knowing exactly when to expect my new arrival was wonderful even though there was a very remote chance that she could come early. However, I was very nervous to go through the surgery again and I asked a lot of friends (and strangers on my local mom online support group), OBGYN, nurses and anesthesiologist about what to expect with a second c-section. If you are dealing with this possibility, I hope my experience will be helpful to you.
- My first took place after 11pm, after being induced for over 24hrs using a variety of medication and methods. Because of my son’s position and the curve of my spine, I suffered pretty painful back labor. I hadn’t slept in days and was completely exhausted. With my second, the surgery was at 8:30am. The day before, I had a meeting with nurses and the anesthesiologist to draw blood, explain the surgery, and answer all of my questions. My parents picked up Big D the night before, and then the hubs and I went out to dinner. When we got to the hospital in the morning, I power-walked up to the ante-natal unit, got prepped for surgery, and walked into the OR on my own.
I didn’t take any bump pics of this pregnancy until a few minutes before getting prepped for surgery. Here’s what I looked like about an hour before giving birth. More than a little tired, with no make-up. Eek!
- Instead of an epidural (which I had the first time since we assumed I would have a regular birth), I received a spinal. Unlike an epidural, it was just a shot (no IV). It went in quickly and easily, and within 10 minutes I couldn’t feel my feet. With an epidural you retain some level of feeling and movement so you can push, but with a spinal you’re temporarily paralyzed. It’s definitely weird but wore off surprisingly fast after the surgery.
- The atmosphere in the OR was very different than the first time, which was more of an emergency situation. This time, music was playing and the staff discussed Thanksgiving plans while doing their job. It was really nice to have the distraction. As my OBGYN started the incision, “Brick House” was playing which made me and Mr. JC laugh because our little girl was so feisty in the womb. She was clearly face-up prior to surgery and was kicking me like crazy. As she was being born, “Everything I Do, I Do it For You” was playing, which was simply perfect because it was my favorite song for years thanks to watching “Robin Hood Prince of Thieves” about a million times (yeah, I had a celebrity crush on Christian Slater in junior high).
- With the first c-section, I shook uncontrollably and had a bit of a panic attack during the surgery and needed extra oxygen. I barely remember seeing my son when he came out or what happened afterwards. The shaking was so bad that I wasn’t able to have any skin-to-skin contact with him, which was very disappointing. This time, I didn’t experience any shaking, and was much calmer during surgery and didn’t need any oxygen. Once in the recovery room, I was able to have skin-to-skin contact with my girl, and it was great!
- C-section recovery is no fun, although personally I’d rather deal with an abdominal incision than one in the hoo-ha. So far I don’t really notice a difference between the first and second one. I’m a little worried about breaking the news to my son that I can’t pick him up or have him on my lap for a few weeks.
At the end of the day, my friends who experienced more than one c-section and my doctor were right – the second one was a lot easier. Although it will be a while before I’m operating at 100%, it’s all worth it to see the sweet face of my little girl!