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Cesarean Birth Support Thread April & May 2006 - Page 3

post #41 of 133
I would like to introduce myself. I have lurked on this thread before. My name is Beth and my DS is 2 at the end of the month. I had an unplanned c-sec for his birth. The day before he was born I woke up at 6 in the morning and felt discomfort. I thought it might be gas and went to the washroom. It appeared to go away after that but I still felt that maybe my DH should not go to work. At about 7 in the morning my water broke. I ran to the washroom yelling at my DH that it was time to go. There was a lot of vernix and meconium in the fluid. When we got to the hospital they were very accomodating. My labour did not start until I was there. Contractions were coming very hard. Everyone expected the labour and delivery to go quickly (even me)./ I got an epidural because the contractions were so fast and they hurt. Things slowed down then. My DS's heart rate never changed with the contractions- the nurses commented that they had never seen such a good baby. It was like he was not in labour. By 4 that afternoon I was fully dilated. I did not push until 9 that night though. I pushed for 2 hours and nothing happened. The nurses started to talk about me bleeding too much because my uterus was tired. I was very exhausted by this point also. I had a nurse pushing for vacuum extraction but the OB felt that a c-sec was better. I was too exhausted to go on and agreed. They then said that they were going to delay the c-sec because the baby was not in distress and that the baby only counted not the mother. I was actually taken in quite quickly thanks to DH. When he was born I remember the OB saying what a big boy and wondering how big he was. It turns out that he was 11 lbs 2 oz. The doctor looked over the curtain at me and said that if we had tried to extract him vaginally both he and myself would have been severely damaged. He was with me from the beginning and nursed very well. Thank you for reading my novel. I don't really talk about the birth. Everyone just assumes that I had a c-sec when I tell them how big he was.
post #42 of 133
Originally Posted by OnTheFence
If you anticipated having a csection or planned one, what if any dietary things did you do to promote your recovery?
No PRE-surgery recommendations for you (although I asked my midwives the same question), but I did take probiotics after the surgery. Antibiotics at the beginning of the surgery are matter-of-course here, and I wanted to reduce the chance of developing thrush as a result.
post #43 of 133

post surgery exercise

I had read somewhere about post surgery healing exercises.i cant find it now.can someone pls give me the link.
Also, does anyone know when is the right time to start exercising to loose the cesarean pouch(mine is too bad!).
post #44 of 133
Diet- Well, I was on a seriously carb restricted diet due to having GD while pregnant. Because of that I didn't gain any weight this pregnancy. (I initially lost 16 pounds and was back to my pre-pregnancy weight the day I gave birth. I also had the flu 3 weeks before he was born, I puked for 24 hours and lost 5 pounds which also came into play) Although I do not recommend dieting while pregnant, I think because of my circumstances it will aid in my recovery because my body doesn't have a bunch of extra weight to deal with.

Exercise- Walk, walk, walk!!! It's hard to get the time to do serious excerise, and I think that starting too early can do more harm than good when recovering from a c-section. I think it's best to walk at a pace you can handle, and then once you are able to handle a good clip just extend the length and distance of your walk. I don't know about you, but my breastfeed, co-sleeping, sling riding kids won't let me get away long enough to have a workout at a gym!!! Walking is great 'cause we do it together. (And wearing the baby helps burn those calories!!!)
post #45 of 133
thanks for this thread. i had a c/s 6 mo ago and was really hard on myself. i thought i could have prevented it...

now i know that this whole journey is a constant learning process, with no right or wrong answers. who knows if i will have another c/s? if i have to i have to. i would love to VBAC, but i have come to terms with my initial c/s.

I just pray that God will allow my DH and I to have many many more kids! We are loving parent hood (exhausted, sometimes cranky, but loving it )
post #46 of 133

Isometric scar massage?

As for belly exercises, I found several websites that said Pilates is the best for that--I was doing it before I got pg, so I'll be signing up for another class this summer to re-start. It's great for the abs! I imagine you shouldn't start it until 6-8 weeks postpartum, though, at the earliest. It's fairly intense.

However, those same websites recommended isometric scar massage to prevent problems. Anyone know of a website that describes this procedure?
post #47 of 133
Anyone ever used a birth affirmations CD to prepare for a planned cesarean? I used hypnobirthing CDs last time to prepare for my VBAC attempt and I found them very helpful.

I found this one on-line but I don't know anything about it:

post #48 of 133
Thread Starter 
Bump, and saying Hi.
post #49 of 133

scheduled c/s what did you tell your young child?

I'm 39.2 weeks. My baby is breech. We found out at 37 weeks and have tried everything to turn her, but she doesn't want to. After much, much, much thought we have decided to schedule the c-birth.

I have a 3 year old who is very inquisitive and sensitive. I am trying to figure out what to tell him concerning a c-birth. He already knows that babies come from a mama's vagina. We try to be honest and clear with him without overwhelming his emotions or life knowledge.

What did you tell your young child to help him/her understand what will/did happen.

This is what he knows at the moment:

The baby's head is up. It is a better to have the baby's head down (well at least according to the medical community where I live). We have all tried turning the baby for the past two weeks. If the baby doesn't move her head down, I will need extra help from the doctor to get the baby out.

How did you explain the lower abdominal incision, with regards to your child being careful?
post #50 of 133
I didn't even tell my DD (3 when I had my last C section) that much information. She never really asked and we had so much else going on that it didn't come up. At some point she'll ask, but up to now I haven't really talked to her much about how she or her sister or the new little one will come into the world. I'm not hiding anything, but until she's curious enough to ask me about it, I'm not going to have the conversation with her. I think this time may be different because she'll be 5 and a lot more aware than she was at 3 1/2 of what having a baby means.

I did talk about my incision though. I just told her that mommy had an operation and was very sore so we had to be careful of mommy's tummy.
post #51 of 133
yes, we didn't give my 3yo many details. I guess we told her that the baby was in mommy's tummy, and that it was time for him to come out. But she hasn't asked many sex/birth questions yet so I haven't really dealt with it. I told her I had a big owie (she is very verbal but we haven't given the "owie" word up yet!) on my tummy so she would have to be careful, that I could give her lots of hugs but not pick her up for a little while.

I think it's good to be honest but not to the point of freaking out your kid...they can hear it later when they are better able to understand, IMO. I definitely want my dd to know the "normal" way of giving birth though. not sure how that will happen but maybe not til she's having her own.
post #52 of 133
Bump. It seems there are some mamas out there now who may need this thread. Hopefully we can get it going again.
post #53 of 133
I just wanted to update/post I have decided to try a vbac and I am being induced next week. I feel good about the induction and feel like I have a very supportive doctor to help me through it. Thought I might have better luck with some support from this thread rather than the others I have tried. Hope all is well with you all and your births are great no matter what way the baby comes out.
post #54 of 133
Originally Posted by mommyjamieof2
I just wanted to update/post I have decided to try a vbac and I am being induced next week. I feel good about the induction and feel like I have a very supportive doctor to help me through it. Thought I might have better luck with some support from this thread rather than the others I have tried. Hope all is well with you all and your births are great no matter what way the baby comes out.
Congrats on your decision to try for a vbac! That's great! I'm not trying to be unsupportive, but I thought that induction was a bad idea with vbac births? I'm just learning about vbac, so your post confused me, and I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. I was under the impression that it was safer to have a repeat c-section than to be induced for a vbac. . . But I'd love to be mistaken!

post #55 of 133
omg, this is awesome! thanks sandy for pointing me to it!

I cant wait to read all the replies!

My boy turns one month this weekend. He flipped breech at 39 weeks. We tried to turn him back, and he tried and almost did... but in the end, he decided the best way for him to come out was by the kind hands of a doctor. Full birth story here: http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=444751

The first two weeks were hell, but then a few key things happened to start me on the path of healing....
~one was my midwife telling me that babies choose their birth, not the moms...
~another was going to a therapist who specializes in traumatic births-- and neonatal loss... and talking with her-- but also realizing that there are women who didnt have the option i did, of birthing a healthy happy baby.

And, yes, I DO consider it birthing.
post #56 of 133

my story and my babe's

Thanks for this thread. I've really been wanting to recount my story for someone who might care, and respond in some way. I don't know what I want really in response - recognition maybe. I don't know.

I knew from the moment I conceived dd that I was not a mainstream mama. Dh and I already lived outside of the consumer culture that most of our family and friends lived in. I just didn't know that their was an alternative to birthing my dd. I didn't even know enough to research alternatives. Ignorance is not bliss. In eastern Kentucky, where I'm from, midwives practice alongside OBs and you don't have to see an OB unless their are severe problems. My sister had 2 natural beautiful births with a midwife in the hospital where I was present and her coach for the last one. Dh and I moved to the city after college and the situation was quite a bit different here. There is literally one midwife with a license to practice and I couldn't even find her. Kentucky has a law that midwives must practice alongside OBs to be licensed and no OBs in this city will practice with them. Anyway, I ended up going with an all woman 6 OB practice. I was disappointed.

Dh and I practiced for a Bradley birth after looking for different birthing methods. The docs began to say that dd was big (upwards of 10 pounds) very early. I had 6 total ultrasounds. Out of the 6 docs I didn't get along with only 1. I knew she would be the one to deliver dd - intuition.

At 37 weeks one of the docs said if I wanted any chance to deliver vaginally then I must be induced right away or face c-section. I agreed because it was so important for me to avoid c-section. When I got to the hospital the doctor came in after a very long time. It was none other than the only one I didn't like. She began to explain that dd could have cerebral palsy, die, have brain damage, etc... if I didn't have a c-section. I was scared then, and so was dh. None of our family knew enough to tell me to go ahead and try. I agreed to the c-section.

Disappointed and scared, I waited for my turn. I soon found out the doc had performed 4 c-sections before mine, and I'd have to wait my turn. When they brought me into the room they refused to let dh come in until after the epidural - the worst part. They joked with each other (10 people), and were listening to the radio. They wondered whether or not they should give me the epidural through my tattoo. I became very frightened and needed dh. I had never had a surgery before. They had to sedate me twice because my heartrate went too high.

Finally, dh was allowed in. I waited and could feel them pulling and tugging on my insides. When I felt the release, and I knew my baby was disconnected from me, all I heard was a doc say "It's head is the size of a bowling ball". I sent dh up to get her. I wanted her with me. I wanted their insensitive paws off her. I heard her cry. Dh told me she was beautiful. Finally, I held her. Dh told her it was okay, and she stopped crying. My heart warmed to the fact that she knew his voice, and felt safe. I felt so sorry for her, and so happy to hold her at the same time. She weighed in a 8.13 and was 20 inches. Not upwards of 10 pounds.

In recovery, they told me to tell them when my pain reached a 5 out of 10. I have a high pain tolerance, so I reached a 5 probably later than most, and I didn't receive my meds quick enough. The pain hit me like a ton of bricks. I felt out of control. Not only that, but they went ahead and moved me to my room, and the nurse ran off with my IV pole while it was still attached to my arm.

DD had trouble the first night. She choked on her fluids, and nurses had to rush in the room to suction her a few times. I refused to let her go to the nursery. She roomed-in the entire time. This was a blessing. I loved watching her rest, and holding her close to me. I quit taking any pain meds after the second dosage because dd was having stomach troubles and I didn't want any of the meds to pass to her. I was in pain, but I dealt. I was in the hospital for 5 days because they were afraid I had a pulmonary embolism. I had tightness of chest from being in the hospital.

At home, I was in major pain. I couldn't do much of anything. When I tried anyway, my incision tore open and began oozing pus. It took me 3 months to heal. I still have pain in my scar, and my outer scar is rather long compared to those I've seen.

I bonded with dd immediately, but I feel we were both cheated out of her proper birth. I don't feel complete for some reason. I feel like no one cares, and they think I should just chalk it up as a whatever. I feel like I was a victim of malpractice in that she just fit me into her schedule. I ache for our birth. DD is my pride and joy, and she is beautiful and healthy, and for that I'm thankful. I wonder how it would be different if I could have delivered her naturally.

I am planning a VBAC for my next dc. I want to have one around October 2007. I have educated myself and I have found a few midwives working "underground" to help with homebirths. I found MDC when dd was 5 months. I feel like I can't TTC again if I have to have another c-section, but I want dd to have one sibling.

I don't want it to sound like our experience was all horrible. In fact, I'm feeling guilty for even posting this. But, I need to talk it all out. Her birth was a beautiful, God blessed event. I am so thankful to have a healthy baby for so many are not as fortunate. I love her with all my heart. I created a storybook for her about her birth. The great parts only.

I think I need to cry.
post #57 of 133
easykygal...thanks for sharing your story. crying is a good thing, and it is definitely a kind of grief to not have the birth you wanted.

on another note, there are some awesome HB midwives in KY!
post #58 of 133
I'm Amy, mom to four-month-old Julia, who was born by semi-scheduled c-section in December. I'm still processing what happened and I feel like lately I've only begun to realize the depths of my anger at myself and the entire system over what happened. This may ramble somewhat so please forgive me if this is hard to follow.

Julia was two weeks late and I was desperate to avoid interventions. We had hired a doula and I was going to a group practice that included a DO and two midwives (ironically, one of the MDs in the practice is probably the most open to alternative and natural medicine, but I didn't find that out until after the fact). I had a water-break scare two weeks *before* her EDD that turned out to be nothing, and people kept telling me that I'd probably go early.

At one week after the EDD, they had me scheduled for prostaglandins. This is the beginning of when things began to go wrong. After talking with my mom (whom I'm VERY close to), my husband and my doula, I decided to go in and get the prostaglandins and then make up my mind the next day about whether or not to go back in to get induced. Imagine my surprise when I got to the hospital and was told I needed to stay overnight, be monitored, have an IV, and then get the pit the next day. My husband was still at work, I hadn't eaten dinner, nor had I packed a bag. I almost decided to just leave but I was feeling emotionally vulnerable and didn't want to confront my midwife. What followed was one of the worst nights of my life. The hospitals were short-staffed on nurses, so we had a nurse from another unit, who was 22 and incredibly inexperienced. She couldn't even put in the IV properly and it was very painful. The room was too hot, I had a migraine, and the EFM kept me up all night. Anytime I rolled over, it lost the hearbeat and would start beeping. Around midnight, it ran out of paper and started beeping again. The overnight nurse woke me up at the shift change to introduce herself (?!?) and then told me to get sleep because I had a "big day" the next day. After almost no sleep, the super-bitchy OB who was on call came in to start the pit at 6am. I told her I wanted a shower and breakfast first, and wouldn't start the pit until my doula arrived. She started arguing with me that the sooner it started, the sooner I'd go into labor, and that it would take a long time so we should start now. I refused and she finally agreed to wait. I had a shower, ate and then she came back in to examine me and pronounced my cervix the most unfavorable she'd ever seen and told me it wouldn't be worth it to start pit, but we could try Cytotec if I wanted. Good thing I'd researched beforehand! I flat-out refused and said I was going home. This was December 22......I had a follow-up NST on Christmas Eve to make sure the baby was okay.

At the NST, they said we should reschedule the induction attempt for after Christmas (the 26th). At the time I was thinking, well, I have another few days to decide and if I don't feel like it, I just won't go in. I went into labor that night, during church! The contractions came on and off over the next two days, getting as frequent as every two minutes apart but never really going anywhere. We had decided to wait until I was in transition before heading to the hospital to minimize interventions but I never progressed that far. So on the 26th, after talking to my doula and husband, we decided we might as well go in and augment with pit, and see how far I'd progressed. This time we'd be prepared. We ate dinner, had our bags, and when we got to the birthplace, we set up the room the way we liked it, I changed into one of my own nightgowns, and THEN we told the nurses we were ready for the exam and the prostaglandin. We also taped our birth plan right to the monitor (the previous attempt, one of the nurses had thrown the plan away!!!). Unfortunately, the exam showed I was only one cm dilated and 50% effaced, but they decided to go ahead and induce any way. (BIG mistake)

I started having contractions within an hour and was managing them with no meds.....just massage, moving around as much as the $%(#*@! IV and EFM would allow, holding DHs and the doula's hands. The doctor on call was the DO I'd been seeing, but she gave the absolute WORST internal exams of any I'd gotten. She thought it would be good to "help my cervix out" so she was seriously trying to push my cervix open with her hand. WAY more painful than the pit contractions! Also, the nurse who came in on the shift change was a bitch, no bedside manner, wouldn't leave the room, and was upping the pit every fifteen minutes instead of every thirty like the previous nurse. At the next exam (still with the same doc), I had not dilated any more and was still only about 70% effaced. At this point the doc outlined the options: keep going and see what happens, take a night off and try again the next day, or go ahead and schedule a section. We opted to trying again and I got a night without any monitors (although they kept the hep lock in, ugh). I was still having contractions but they were much milder and I was able to sleep through them.

The next day everything started again. This time my favorite nurse was on, and she had made a request to have me as her patient whenever she was on and we were there, so that was better. Also, the "swing" MD on call at the hospital was the nicest, gentlest man I've ever met and very gentle with his exams, and just really sweet. He said he'd keep the internals to a minimum and told me unless things happened faster, he'd do his first check in the early afternoon. So although I was still having closely-spaced, pit contractions, it was a much better day. Then the bad news hit. When the doc did my exam, he told me I hadn't made ANY progress: still 1cm and 70% effaced. He said we could keep trying, take the night off and try again, or schedule a section. At this point I'd been in slow early labor/medium labor for four days, I was exhausted, I was sick of IVs and being poked and prodded, and I was worried about the effect of all the pitocin on my baby. My husband had gone home to shower and nap while my doula stayed with me, so I called him and we hashed out the options together. We tearfully decided to go with a section.

Thursday, my six-pound, fourteen ounce daughter was born by c-section. She had never dropped even after all those contractions and was high in my abdomen when they took her out. The operation itself was uneventful; I had double-layer suturing and didn't get infected or anything. But I won't pretend dealing with the after-effects was a picnic. I really missed that bonding period with my baby, the cut the cord before it had stopped pulsing because of having to finish operating on me, and I had a very difficult time establishing breastfeeding due to inverted nipples-- the c-section complicated things further because it was so hard to get a good position, and I ended up exclusively pumping for six weeks while we worked on her latch. Also, I've got a permanently numb area on my lower abdomen now, which my doctor said was common.

I'm now feeling like this whole thing could have been avoided if I had simply refused to allow myself to be induced, and instead gone in for frequent NSTs and AFIs, and just let the baby come when she was ready. Instead, I bought into the myth that a 42-week fetus is on death's door and that we needed to get her out. She wasn't too big, she wasn't in distress, and I feel like I missed out on a beautiful experience. I'm so upset that here I am, all psyched up for a natural birth and I wind up with a million interventions, and other moms who don't care and CHOOSE epidurals end up with normal vaginal births.

I'm definitely planning VBAC for my next baby, most likely HBAC, although I'm not entirely sure. Because.....in addition to everything *I* went through, my husband has AB blood and I have O blood, so all of our kids will have pathological newborn jaundice, which requires immediate phototherapy. The one upside of having the section was that I got to stay in the hospital with Julia while she was under the lights and make sure that nobody sneaked her any formula. If I do give birth at home, we may have some issues there.

Anyhow, that's my story.
post #59 of 133

learn to like your c section

I delivered via c section due to a breech baby last August. I was none to happy to learn of this situation since I had planned a waterbirth, complete with no drugs and hypnobirthing. I was depressed for a week before the section and then decided to tackle my feelings and turn it around. I have learned that it is all about mind set. Our culture teaches us to be ashamed of having c sections... well not any longer, not for me. My section was planned, so recovery wasn't bad. (the first few days are pretty painful, but bearable) Yes, I now have a scar, but you can barely see it. Things C section let me avoid-- perineal tear!!! I don't know about you, but I rather enjoy sex and want to keep it that way. I was able to ENJOY sex after 3 weeks post op. In fact, it was better than ever. No incontinence. A friend of mine has had 3 b babes vaginally, she can't jump on a trampoline without wetting herself. No disfigured or mutilated gentitalia from tearing. Less chance of rectal, vaginal or uterine prolapse in the future. Did I mention feeling like a virgin again! There are some advantages to C section, so if you had to have one, or have to in the near future why not look at the brighter sides?
post #60 of 133
hi grumpyshoegirl (what does that mean it's cracking me up) and welcome. your story sounds very similar to mine with my first baby. Some of us are just ten month mamas! Sounds like a homebirth would be your best bet, because very few cp's will "let" you go past 42 even if everything's fine.

Take care and it's nice to "meet" you.

If any mods are following along, is there anyway we can "sticky" a cesarean birth support thread? Or should we just keep bumping to keep this on page 1? I think it's important that it's up so new mamas can see it.

oh and I crossposted with luvmygio...I'll just go ahead and say that this is a support thread for cesarean birth, not to argue the benefits/drawbacks of c/s. We are all at different places in dealing with it no matter when our births happened
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