Today we have a guest post from Chelle, who blogs at Unique and Chic and we’re talking about preparing for a c-section.
My first birth wasn’t the fantastic earth mother experience that I had thought it would be so when I found out I was pregnant nearly 4 years later my first thoughts were how I would choose to have the birth pan out this time.
Having been open about my decision with family and friends the first thing I felt the need to do was justify why that was my only option. It felt to me that I would get a lot of negative feedback and I planned my response articulately – a speech ready just in case. Planned c-sections get a lot of stick as people assume you are ‘too posh to push’ but the emotion and decision isn’t one to be taken lightly. There is a lot of planning and extra recovery time involved.
Here is what I did when planning an elective section.
I spoke to my midwife early on. I explained the situation, why I wanted a section and that I had researched the risks and benefits to me and my body. Speaking to your midwife about any birth plan early on and your reasoning behind it leads to more support. It really does make a difference to have this support early on.
Attend a birth options clinic. No matter how decided you are on having a planned section it is really helpful to go and speak at a birth options session. The birth option clinic is there to support your decision but also support you. I was offered a birth stories session but I had already done this at 18 months post birth. It is really helpful to talk through any traumatic birth experience and see the actual timeline of previous births to help your mental state of mind. It’s not there to push you into making another decision but to help you clear your head ready for birth and make sure you have all the help you need.
Don’t google. Instead, search on youtube. I was advised to look at natural c-sections on your tube- my word I cried at these. They were amazing – not like my emergency section. Calming, involved and just beautiful. There is a big difference between emergency and planned.
Be prepared with questions. We wanted music, skin to skin, daddy to cut the cord. All of this can be discussed at your pre-op.
Have support for when you come home. A section is major abdominal surgery. You won’t be up and about quickly and you will need to take things slow. My partner took 4 weeks off to help me with recovery and both my sister and sister in law have taken time off to help with home life and a vibrant pre-schooler.
Finally and this is important. A plan is never a plan when a baby is involved.
It turned out my little man wanted to arrive early. After being admitted to hospital several times during my pregnancy my little guy tried to come at 35 weeks and then arrived at 36 weeks. 4 weeks earlier than due date and 3 weeks earlier than our elective section date. Be prepared that what baby wants baby gets. I was thought to be 8cm dilated when I was admitted to the delivery suite. I was encouraged to try for a vaginal birth and did but ended up with an emergency section in the end. If this happens you will be offered a bail out as my doctor and midwife put it.
Don’t be afraid to change your mind. If you do, thats cool. If you don’t thats cool too. My second emergency section was much more like a planned section as we were more prepared. Having a surgery team sing along to XTC made for an amazing birth experience and made me much more relaxed.
Most importantly, in all the planning make sure you feel confident and informed. Ask other mums who have made and experienced your decision. I found a great support on twitter and it made me feel at ease with my decision as your should with yours