Wow, what a great supportive thread!
I had my DS by c-section in March, 2003 after 34 hours of labor and 2 hours of pushing. He was posterior and ended up weighing 9 lb 13 oz. Thankfully, it wasn't an emergency c-section and DS was born screaming and perfectly healthy. I, however, started hemorraging and needed 3 blood transfusions. They didn't even show him to me over the sheet after he was born - I had to wait 15 minutes while they weighed him, cleaned him up, etc. Then they showed him to me very quickly, but then took him off to the nursery and DH went with him. DS was perfectly fine and had absolutely no problems. I was bleeding very badly at the time, so maybe that was part of it.
Everything after that is a blur because they drugged me up with morphine, etc. Long story short, I don't even remember holding him for the first time and had a very hard time bonding with him due to the circumstances. I ended up with PPD and it's been a long struggle to come to terms with my delivery. I can't say I am completely at peace with it, but I have worked through much of my disappointment.
I am pregnant again and due in November. I will be having a planned c-section and I'm at peace with that. I am however, a bit nervous about things repeating - such as me not seeing my baby for a while, etc. I have put together a detailed birth plan and thankfully - after doing some research - it appears that the hospital I will be delivering at is very pro-keep-mom-and-baby-together-at-all-times. I'm sure things will be much better.
One question though - I just got off the phone talking to a childbirth educator at the hospital who filled me in on hospital policies etc. I feel very comfortable with everything but one thing bothered me. She said they do NOT allow mom to hold the baby while they are stitching her back up. Mom isn't allowed to hold the baby until she is in recovery. I asked her why and she said it was because mom's arms will have the blood pressure cuff on, etc. and it wouldn't be very safe. But I've heard of many mothers who have held their babies then and it makes a huge difference in bonding with their baby. Women who have their babies vaginally are allowed to hold their babies on their chests right away after birth! Why is my hospital denying c-section moms this? I completely understand that if something is wrong with the baby or I'm not doing so well that it may not happen. But it really bothers me to be told its not an option. I didn't argue with the woman because she can't really do anything, but what can I do?
I plan on talking to my doctor at my next prenatal visit about this and my other birth plan wishes. Any ideas? Can they seriously keep me from holding my baby? It is MY baby and I should be allowed to hold her if I want to! That just really bothers me.
On the plus side, I asked her how they would respond if I declined the eye ointment and Vitamin K vaccines and she said I would just be asked to sign a waiver and that's all. Also they will not give the Hep B (which we are also declining) without the parents signing a consent form. So that's a relief.