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Positive experience: my elective c section

(50 Posts)
kstoddart Tue 26-Jul-16 23:00:38

Hi mums! Writing this post in the hopes it will reassure any ladies who are booked for elective cesarean section and don't know what to expect. I delivered my second son by planned section 2 weeks ago.

Firstly, I know c sections cause a lot of controversy. I am not "too posh to push", I'm not lazy and I didn't want "the easy way out" (actually can't believe people say that!). 2 years ago I had a pretty traumatic delivery with my first chi. Waters broke Monday night, induced Wednesday morning, took an allergic reaction to something in the drip, had muscle relaxant injections, a failed epidural attempt followed by a successful insertion, ended up on oxygen, clip put on my sons head and scrapings taken to check his blood. Got to 10 cm after 24 hours only to be rushed to theatre for an emergency section because my wee ones heart was dipping and he was distressed. In the haste to deliver him I was given too much spinal which numbed me up to my shoulders. This resulted in me taking a panic attack because I couldn't feel myself breathing. It was awful. I struggled to breastfeed, I felt like a terrible mum and my recovery both emotionally and physically was slow and painful.

This time, my consultant advised that as I couldn't be induced we would schedule an elective section for 39 weeks and if I went into labour myself I would be allowed to try and deliver naturally for a set amount of time.

On the 11th of July at 39+2 weeks my beautiful baby boy was born in Glasgows Queen Elizabeth University Hospital by planned c section. The experience was completely different from my first birth.

At my pre op appointment I was given ranitidine to take the night before and the morning of my surgery. And the day of my section went as follows :

06:45 admitted to the hospital. Lovely midwife did my observations and I put on my sexy surgical stockings and my gown for theatre. Hubby was offered tea and we were advised to get nice and comfy.

11:45 midwife came to escort hubby and I down to theatre. We were given a bay in recovery where we could leave our stuff. Theatre sister came in to talk us through the procedure and what to expect. She asked if we had any questions, I asked for the radio, delayed cord clamping, skin to skin and whether my husband could take some pictures of the baby in theatre. She agreed to all of the above. Then the anaesthetist came in and put the cannula in my hand, he talked me through the spinal block and I signed the paperwork. Lastly the consultant came through and introduced herself, at that point I was a bit nervous and shaky. She was lovely and really calmed me down.

13:40 hubby was taken away to get scrubbed up and I was led into theatre. The team all introduced themselves, and I sat up on the table for my spinal. I have a real fear of needles so my hubby was allowed to sit beside me in theatre for the block. My back was sprayed then I was given a local anesthetic to numb the area. The spinal itself was nothing compared to the epidural I'd had previously. Nice and quickly it was over and I lay down on the table, the lovely anaesthetist checked I was numb and they began the operation. The surgeon spoke to me throughout and music was playing. It was lovely and calm. Completely different from my first birth experience.

14:05 "are you coming out?" the surgeon asked my little boy as she lifted him from my tummy. As promised he was laid across my legs for a few minutes before the cord was cut, he was shown quickly to me as I asked,before the midwife turned to my husband and asked him to get the camera out. He was allowed to video our boys apgar scoring, him being weighed and wrapped up and then I finally got my skin to skin when my little boy was laid on my chest.

15:00 iwas wheeled into recovery with my beautiful baby boy in my arms.

The only annoyance was the drugs made me a bit sick and I was kept in recovery for 7 hours because I wasn't peeing enough (probably because I couldn't even keep water down!).

After two nights we were allowed home. The recovery has been easier this time I think despite having scar tissue removed and having a toddler to look after.

I feel like this delivery has put to rest the trauma from the last birth. To any girls in a similar situation I'd say try not to worry. I know it's frightening, and very likely not how you pictured meeting your baby. But it's such a controlled environment.

My first pregnancy I was planning a water birth, i did hypnobirthing, i was determined to have no drugs etc. But sometimes it doesn't work out that way, and after the last time this was a genuinely positive experience.

We're now settling into life as a family of four, so happy and honestly, I wouldn't change my boys delivery for the world.

strawberrybootlace Tue 26-Jul-16 23:03:44

I wish that I had been able to read something like this before my cs (which was also a positive experience although I was terrified). Thank you for posting.

strawberrybootlace Tue 26-Jul-16 23:03:58

And congratulations!!

kstoddart Tue 26-Jul-16 23:08:33

@strawberrybootlace thank you so much. There's so much negativity around birth by section, but everyone has their stories and reasons. Healthy babies are the most important thing, but its a scary thing. I also wished there was more positive stories out there before my boy was born. I was a nervous wreck before if this helps anyone it's got to be a good thing x

Summersunnysummertime1212 Wed 27-Jul-16 07:24:01

Thanks for posting this! It's been lovely to hear a positive c section story!

dylsmimi Wed 27-Jul-16 07:33:51

Thank you for posting. I am due to have a c section in about 7 weeks and was doing fine about it until last week when I had a big wobble and ended up in tears especially about the recovery.
This has really helped me so thank you and congratulations

Mommym24 Wed 27-Jul-16 07:58:17

I must admit it's not half as scary as some people may think. It's actually amazingly effortless on the mothers part compared to natural birth! Recovery I would say is worse for 3 days then after that I felt surprisingly good! 5 months on and feeling great smile

politics31 Wed 27-Jul-16 08:03:31

Thank you so much for this. I've been offered an Elcs due to a traumatic birth last time with complications for me and DS and I am currently deciding which way to go. Your experience has really put a positive spin on c section as all my friends have had emergency ones which understandably are a little more chaotic and scary! Congratulations on your baby and I wish you a speedy recovery

Smerlin Wed 27-Jul-16 08:11:00

Thanks for this post. I had a terrible first birth with endless complications (for me not the baby fortunately) so would really hope to have an ELCS for my second. Would be high risk for second birth now anyway so would have no chance of a non-medicalised birth anyway.

kstoddart Wed 27-Jul-16 14:12:40

You're really welcome ladies. Major surgery is never a walk in the park, or a decision to be taken lightly as we all know. But that doesn't mean it has to be a negative experience at all. Honestly the worst bit was the time to over think it. I too had a really traumatic experience with my first birth as I said above, and the hardest part pre surgery was over coming the negative memories. I was terrified before it, and all the posts etc I seen were really frightening. If any one of you girls feels even a little bit better from my story I'm ha 😘

kstoddart Wed 27-Jul-16 14:14:05

@politics31 my emergency was very frightening, the elective is a completely different experience honestly x

BendydickCuminsnatch Wed 27-Jul-16 14:15:21

Gonna read this later so posting so I can find it! Definitely having a c section next time after a year of physio after DC1! Congrats on your baby flowers

kstoddart Wed 27-Jul-16 14:17:12

dylsmimi I had a few of those moments too, but 2 weeks later I'm almost back to normal again. Just keep your Meds topped up the first few days and you'll be grand. And keep moving as soon as you can. I've been off painkillers since Thursday

politics31 Wed 27-Jul-16 14:18:42

Thanks kstoddart, that's really reassuring! Now just to persuade DH it's the right thing to do! He is supportive but understandably worried but I'm hoping time to think about it will help, I'm not due til january so have a while!

kstoddart Wed 27-Jul-16 14:26:50

BendydickCuminsnatch thank you very much 😊 he's a great baby x

kstoddart Wed 27-Jul-16 14:35:25

politics31 there's risks involved in any type of delivery, I actually felt reassured by the way the surgeon took the time to see me before the op, my emergency section was a blur of strangers. This time there were 6 people in the room, plus hubby and I and every one introduced themselves. They were brilliant with us, especially the anaesthetist who sat behind my husband at my head during the procedure and constantly checked how I was. The surgeon popped her head over a few times as well to ask how I felt and the head midwife was so excited for us when our son was born. It was really special, so calm and relaxing compared to the last time. As long as you know the facts etc and make an informed decision it's your choice, but I did find a real lack of human stories and experiences on this. I would do it again 😉

heehaaw Wed 27-Jul-16 14:43:43

Thanks for posting all this. I had a v traumatic birth with DD which ended in EMCS & have always wondered what an elective would be like as that is what I'd want next time. This was a very reassuring read. Congrats on your DS.

LotsOfDots Wed 27-Jul-16 14:49:25

Have you considered sending a version of this to the hospital? They would be so delighted to receive such positive feedback, and often it is only when people have a less positive experience that they get in touch. QEUH is my local hospital too smile

Annie105 Wed 27-Jul-16 17:32:25

Thank you for posting this!! Im having an ELCS in 2 weeks and I'm starting to get really scared as people do put it down as a method of birth (I tell anyone who asks I'm not ashamed of my choice as I suffer from tokophobia) but people keep telling me my recovery will be awful. I'm so glad to read this positive story! Amazing you have written this so soon after think you again very reassuring

Funnyface1 Wed 27-Jul-16 19:57:09

I really appreciate you posting this. I had my son by emergency section almost 6 years ago. It was fairly traumatic, though not as bad as your experience. I'm now due a planned section with baby number 2 in 5 weeks time. It's taken me a few years to work up the courage. I have been hoping that a planned experience will be much calmer and also an easier recovery. So thanks for taking the time to post and I'm glad it all went so well for you. Congratulations.

SoftBlocks Wed 27-Jul-16 20:03:41

Well done for posting this - I had ELCS and it was amazing. A really calm, lovely experience, all the medical staff were great too.

kstoddart Wed 27-Jul-16 23:35:22

Thanks so much for the lovely comments everyone. I'm so glad that I've been able to help, @Lotsofdots hubby and I are going into the hospital next week with a thank you card and some chocolates for the department. You hear so many horror stories don't you. But I can hand on heart say that the elective experience is far better than the emergency one. My confidence has been restored completely

JohnLithgowsLargeForehead Thu 28-Jul-16 16:19:21

Thanks for your lovely post OP. I just couldn't go through with birth so I had an ELCS and it stopped me spiralling into a bad place. The recovery was painful but so worth it and felt better after two weeks. It gets such a hard rap and I don't know why. Both are painful!

Harveyrabbit76 Thu 28-Jul-16 17:43:36

Thanks for this thread OP! I have my first ELCS on the 9th Aug and am dreading it. So nice to hear a positive experience x

kstoddart Thu 28-Jul-16 17:59:56

You're welcome 😊 c section mums do get a hard time sometimes, but it takes real courage to knowingly put yourself through major abdominal surgery for your child. All types of delivery are special in their own way. I'm extremely proud of myself not just for finding the courage to fall pregnant again, but also to make the safest decision for my son. It's motherhood in its purest form: doing whatever is necessary to bring a healthy child into the world.

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