This blog post is inspired by a conversation I just had on Twitter with a friend of mine who hasn’t experienced the wonders of childbirth yet. She said she thinks she’d rather have a cesarean despite all of the pain and after care. I immediately responded with, no, no you don’t. Isn’t that what you’d expect a cesarean-birth mom to say? Cesarean sections are, in fact, major abdominal surgery. It’s not a simple procedure. It’s not like getting a tooth pulled at the dentist. Major muscles are lacerated. A baby is pulled out. And you’re sewn back up and sent home after a few days to navigate the murky waters of motherhood.
I had a scheduled cesarean section. I have been told by many, that this is a much easier way to have a cesarean…versus the dreaded emergency c-section. I have to agree. Really, how bad was it? I’ll be honest. I was terrified. Here I was, all checked into the hospital and standing in the bathroom wiping off my mascara (yea, I wore mascara so I’d look pretty in pictures but opted to take it off when I couldn’t stop the anxiety tears from flowing) and in walks my OB, an hour before my scheduled surgery happily announcing that the OR is free and we can go NOW. NOW?! WHAT? NOW? NO! And then, get this…you walk yourself to the operating room. You climb on the table. And they expect you to keep your cool while they stick a needle in your spine. And THEN…your body goes numb. They help you lay down. You start to panic because half of your lungs are numb and you feel like you’re suffocating. And surely something else is in that spinal because you start to feel like you’re falling…falling asleep, falling down the rabbit hole. And then the nausea kicks in. All the sudden you announce “I think I’m going to be sick.” Your ever-so-heavenly anesthesiologist tells you “I have something for that!” and bam. You feel good. Except very, very tired. And they expect you to stay awake for this? “I just want to close my eyes!” “Keep them open, you’re going to have a baby!”
But are you really “having” a baby? Or are you being given a baby? Here’s where the controversy in this blog post will arise. But this is MY experience. Not yours. Look at me:
Happy as a clam. Who is doing the work here? What’s going on behind that curtain? I spent my entire pregnancy in disbelief that I’d be having a baby despite all of the wiggles and kicking, the clothes not fitting and the acid reflux, and then suddenly a baby appears behind a blue curtain and it’s MINE?
Then you spend an hour in recovery, where, by the way, you don’t even get to see your baby because ‘there aren’t enough nurses’… instead, your family is oogling over him getting his first bath in the nursery… and I would like to mention that I wanted to be the first one to spend time with my baby…well, guess what, it didn’t happen that way.
But of course, you LOVE that baby and the maternal connection is made once you get to your room and they place that lovely, adorable sweet, sweet, little person on your chest:
But the whole experience…is nothing…like this…
But in the end, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not important how you have the baby, but that the baby is loved. And they are…they are so, so so loved.
If I could do it all over again? I’d have another VBAC. And I might. And I hope do it like this: