Tuesday, October 10

my cesarean birth story

Even though I haven't written birth stories for my first two children, I'd like to get the third one down while it's still fresh in my mind. I may try to capture the others in the near future - that only seems fair - but odds aren't in their favor. 

My first two children entered the world via cesarean, therefore it was a given that my third would as well. My surgery was scheduled one week before Baby's due date, and I would have bet money that I wouldn't make it to the scheduled date. Little Baby proved me wrong. 

A couple of days prior to my surgery, I went to the hospital to have blood work drawn and receive my surgery prep instructions. For two days, I had to bathe in antibacterial soap and not use any lotions of any sort. The night before the surgery, I had to sleep in freshly laundered everything and so did my husband. The morning of the surgery, I had to shower again and use absolutely nothing with chemicals in it - no make up, not even deodorant. This was all done to help prevent infection. 

My surgery was scheduled for 7:30 am, but I had to be there by 5:30 am. I surprised myself by sleeping more than I thought I would! I woke up, showered, and got ready to head to the hospital. My mother-in-law came to stay with the boys and get them off to their respective schools. 

I didn't start to get nervous until we were in the car and on our way. I was excited to meet my baby, but I was anxious for this surgery. My prior two experiences were overall a success, but I had some issues. It seems I don't handle drugs well. Every time I have a procedure, I learn of a new medicine I don't respond to well. And let's not even discuss the recovery period. My family basically says I do not do surgery well. I know we were all a little worried, but we were whole heartedly trusting God. 

We arrived at the hospital and went straight to the labor and delivery unit. I dressed in the hospital garb and climbed into bed. The nurses promptly put in my IV and started administering fluids. I'm not a fan of needles and I was apprehensive about the IV, but she got it on the first try. It makes a big difference when you're not dehydrated! My last IV experience was dreadful. My job at that point was to rest and wait. 

Both my doctor and the anesthesiologist stopped in prior to go time. We discussed my prior reactions to certain medicines and history of blood pressure drops, etc and determined a course of action medicine wise. I'm becoming more than a little nervous at this point. 

Around 7:30 am, the nurses come for me and walk me to the operating room. At this time, I'm separated from my Farmer until right before the actual procedure begins. 

The OR is frigid. Combine my nerves with a chilled room and it's no wonder I'm shaking uncontrollably. The nurses assured me this was all very normal. I sit on the operating table and prep for my spinal. I have to hold onto my pillow, bend forward and hold super still. I ask to hold the nurse's hand as the needle goes in. It's a pinch with some pressure, not as painful as I remember. It helps that we're all discussing the fact that Baby's gender is a surprise. The doctors and nurses are excited about this, especially since we already have two boys at home. 

Once my spinal is in, I lay flat on the table. They loosely restrain my wrists as I have to put my arms all the way out, kind of like a bird. The anesthesiologist starts my drugs and the lower half of my body starts to get numb. This is when I start to feel sick, so he gives me more drugs to keep me from vomiting. While this is happening, the nurses and doctors are prepping for the surgery. There's a curtain about where my waist is that prevents me from seeing anything but the tops of the doctor's head. 

When I'm completely numb and they're all set, it's go time. For a moment I think they're going to start without my Farmer, and then one of the nurses pipes up and asks where's dad. I've never been more happy to see his face. Plus, at this point, the nerves are subsiding and the excitement is stirring.  We're about to meet our little girl or boy, and I'm only minutes away from hearing his or her first cry. But first, I feel sick again, so I ask for more drugs to help with the nausea. 

The doctor gets to work. He tells me that I'll feel some tugging and a bit of pressure, but nothing more. I focus on the fact that it'll be any minute and wait patiently. My Farmer is holding my hand and watching and waiting. The doctors and nurses talk about what's going on. I can hear them talk about how Little Baby doesn't want to come out, how he or she is no small thing. Wow, look at the size of these hands and feet. Oh, let's see... is it a boy or a girl. I'm so on edge, in a good way, I cannot wait to find out. I hear his or her cry and tears start to run down my face. Then, our doctor holds Baby up for me to see and for my Farmer to see. The doctor asks my Farmer whether it's a boy or a girl and it seems like forever, even though it was mere seconds, before he says it's a boy!! I can hear the surprise in his voice, and I know I'm surprised too. We were all leaning towards girl. 

I see the nurses take my baby boy and start to clean him up and clear his lungs. The doctors start to work on putting me back together. Once Baby is ready to go to the nursery, my Farmer goes with him and I'm left alone. But I'm relaxed because Baby's here and now everything I've been afraid of seems petty. I start to get sick again - nausea, light headed and sweating. I'm given more drugs. 

After I'm all back together, I'm taken to recovery. It's only a few moments before my Farmer and the nurses walk in with my little boy. They immediately place him on my chest, skin to skin, and my heart swells. I'm certain it will burst. My Farmer reports that he weighed in at 8 lbs 7 oz (the smallest of our three) and 21 inches long. He's here and he's perfect. The pain I feel means nothing to me. 

We spend the next three days recovering in the hospital. In comparison to my previous cesareans, I'm handling this one much better. The drugs they've chosen are playing nice with me. Im so relieved and thankful to God for that. I'm up and walking the first evening. I'm hurting but it's manageable. The swelling that comes after starts to arrive. I'll spend the next several days swollen as can be from my waist down. It'll be a little over two weeks before I see my true ankles again. 

Little Baby has a hearing test while we're there, his first vaccination, is circumcised, and his blood sugar is tested multiple times because he was born over 8 lbs. By the end of day three, we are cleared to go home except for one thing... he needs a name. As the nurses are putting our paper work together to go home, I'm filling out the papers that give our child a name. We've never been very good at this part. 

Once all is good to go, we load Little E into his car seat and they wheel us down to the car where my Farmer is waiting for us. My heart swells with love and gratefulness to God for how perfect His way is and just how blessed we truly are.


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  1. WOW! So different from my experiences. I think I'd be apprehensive too, but YAY you now have that precious little baby boy. And his sweet little legs are so cute. Congratulations!!! XOXO

  2. What a sweet story...so glad you got it down while it was fresh - and how fun it will be to share again and again:) The birth story just never gets old!! Congratulations!!

    1. Me too! I want to go back and rehash the first two but I know I've already forgotten so much! And thank you! We're so in love with the newest member of our family!

  3. Yay. I am so excited you wrote this. You had a beautiful third birth. So glad it was more controlled (with the drugs) this time.

  4. Ohhh I'm crying!! How absolutely sweet. I'm so glad to hear that you handled this one much better! Congratulations, again!!

  5. Such a beautiful birth story. It makes me want to write down both of my kids stories so they can read about it when they're older!
    XO - Beth

    1. I know!! I really want to go back and write the first two but I move already forgotten so much. I guess that will only fade more. I should get on it!

  6. Aw!! Such a sweet sweet birth story! I'm so glad to read that there are mama's out there nervous about giving birth, especially when it's not their first time. I'm so anxious about delivering a baby-will my body work appropriately, will I be able to handle it? So encouraging to read your words today!

  7. I'm so glad everything went good for you, and that you and baby E are both healthy! Such a sweet story!

  8. Oh what a beautiful story. I'm so glad that everything went well and you are all doing well.

  9. Congratulations, again! I'm so glad they waited until your husband was there! Also glad that the meds are treat you kindly!

  10. Praise God for a healthy birth and a smooth recovery for you! My mom and SIL also have averse reactions to drugs; it really makes relatively routine things scary. I'm glad everything went well this time!

  11. God is so so good. I am thankful that I was able to deliver both of my kiddos vaginally because c-sections (to me) are very scary! Yay for the husband being there, the operation going so well, the health of you and your baby! This is a total praise post!


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