Mine was an emergency c-section, because my baby was in distress. They had warned me that if his heart rate fell below a certain level, they would have to do a c-section. In the meantime, I was aiming for a natural birth and was laboring with monitoring. They had me hooked up to a beeping machine. When they all finally ended up rushing in and telling me I had to have a c-section NOW, they were mostly talking to each other and not to me (understandable, they had important things to communicate). But the beeping had stopped, and I thought that meant my son's heart had stopped beating. I finally got a chance to ask a nurse as they were prepping me for surgery "Is my baby still alive right now?" She was shocked and assured me that of course he was (and he was, and still is healthy). I didn't realize that the beeping had stopped simply because they'd unhooked me from the machine! So I guess all I would change is to make sure somebody is always communicating with/listening to the patient if possible, and explaining what is going on.
Also, I ended up with a severe headache from the spinal anesthesia, and nurses kept just giving me tylenol for a couple of days (which was only marginally affective) until one nurse figured out that it could be from the anesthesia and had me try lying flat on my back (headache went away completely). She called in someone from the anesthesia team to confirm. I had been sleeping in a propped up position in my hospital bed, and didn't know there was such a simple solution. I wish another nurse had thought of this earlier!
Working artist mom with scientist husband, one nifty kid, A. (born 8/11), a couple of cats, and a new baby on the way!