Baby, There Ain’t No Easy Way Out

I really, really wanted to have a natural birth. And by that I mean a vaginal birth with lots of drugs in a sterile and impersonal hospital setting, with no less than four medical professionals at my bedside and a vacuum, extra forceps, and a SWAT team on standby.

I realized that I was not going to get my wish sometime around the 8th month of my pregnancy, when it became apparent that the bulge jutting out of my side was not, as I had hoped, a giant misplaced goiter, but was instead my baby’s head. Nolan, it turns out, was in the transverse position, meaning he was horizontal in my stomach. This is fairly rare, and so I felt pretty badass about it. I was all, yeah, no big deal, my baby isn’t interested in the normal positions. He’s his own man. He’s basically saying, “what up breech babies, that’s all you got?!”

Nolan’s position would have been really awesome if he was competing in the high jump. Turns out it was less awesome for childbirth due to the fact that my vaginal opening is not as wide as the state of Kansas. Nothing against my vaginal opening, yours isn’t that wide either. If it is I would like to hear from you.


Coming to terms with a c-section.

I had friends say to me, when it was clear that the Nolan train wasn’t leaving the station via the preferred exit, “It’s ok, Liz, having a c-section won’t make you any less of a mother.” Huh. That thought never even occurred to me! I wanted to give actual birth because I am competitive and like to pretend I’m tough! Not because I thought it would make me a better mother. I just like overzealous challenges that I can later brag about. My upset over not getting to “compete” in the labor and delivery unit was real, but it was a little like the time I went skydiving – I had no interest in actually jumping from a plane, I just wanted to be able to say I did it after the fact.


Also, I had trained. I had taken the prenatal classes.

I had paid actual money for them. And I had practiced my breathing techniques! Techniques that did not appear would ease much more pain than that of a bee sting, but still. I had practiced swaying on a giant ball to coax my baby out with my rhythmic bounces and periodic hip swivels. I had even bought a tub of olive oil, ready to slather it onto my nether regions! (For those of you who have not prepared for birth, this nifty little trick is called a perineal massage. It helps reduce the risk of tearing during delivery, and as a side bonus you can use the surplus olive oil for many tasty Italian dishes).


All of this intense training was for naught.

A c-section was our only viable option, and so c-section it was. Yes, I would not experience the birth of my first child the way I had hoped, but we are lucky to live in a place where safe alternatives exist. Also, and this is no small thing, a c-section meant an automatic five day stay at the hospital. As we all know hospitals are like hotels but with catheters and adult diapers readily available. So better! And also I LOVE hospital food! The hospital where I delivered Nolan makes an excellent Coq Au Vin. Things were looking up.

Photo credit: Christina McPherson Photography

The big day eventually arrived and things started out smoothly.

Brian was asked to wait outside while I was “prepped.” He was excited and anxious, dressed in scrubs, hat, and booties, like an extra from Grey’s Anatomy. I was busy having my spinal block administered, and quickly felt the lower half of my body go pleasantly numb. The plan was for me to be awake during the surgery, but totally numb from the waist down. I remembered a good friend saying she found her c-section to be “a very civilized way to have a baby.” This is civilized, I thought.

By the time Brian was let into the operating room the surgery was already in full swing. He had barely gotten seated when the obstetrician exclaimed, “I see the baby’s butt!” This was jarringly fast for Brian, who had anticipated more of a build-up to the main event. It was like going to a movie with no coming attractions. It throws a viewer off.

And with that, Nolan was out, via the express train. It was kind of amazing and kind of gross.


And then shit got real.

Just as Nolan made his big debut – at the very height of emotion at this whole disgusting miracle – I started to feel stuff. Like, a lot of stuff. My spinal block wasn’t so much “blocking” anymore. Well, damn. What’s the good of a spinal block without the block? Very, very little, that’s what. This was rapidly devolving into something decidedly uncivilized. Remember, getting the baby out is only the first part. After you evict your tenant you still need to close up the apartment, you see. Lock the doors behind you and all.


I can feel this!”

I was trying to keep the panic down in my voice. Perhaps I sounded too un-panicked, because the anesthesiologist was surprisingly nonchalant.

“Like tugging and pulling?” he asked.

“No, like I can REALLY FEEL this surgery!” I could feel tugging 5 minutes ago. I felt SURGERY HAPPENING now. If I’m not being clear, those two feelings are different.

“Oh, you do? Hmm….Looks like you metabolized the medication too quickly!” His tone was breezy. “Next time you have a surgery you should make sure to tell them that your body seems to metabolize meds too fast.”

Um, yes, noted. Next time I’m having major abdominal surgery I’ll be sure to tell them. Too bad I’m in surgery RIGHT NOW.


Brian could see the panic in my eyes.

Oh, did I mention that I was tied down to the table? I was tied down to the table. I had kind of forgotten I was tied down to the table until the part of the story where the spinal block stopped working and I panicked and tried to free myself. Good thing I was tied down, actually.

Brian was in his own type of bind. Unbeknownst to me, he had just been told that he needed to leave the surgery area to accompany Nolan to another room, where I presume they make sure he has all of his most important bits. Nolan, not Brian. Brian’s bits were already accounted for.

Not wanting to cause more panic, but clearly seeing that I was losing my shit, Brian approached me cautiously, the way one might approach a skittish but rapidly angering beaver.


“Ok, I’m gonna go now…” His voice was soft.

He was trying to appear calm so that I may be calmed. Which is not possible when you are actively being operated on with very, very little medication.

Uh, ok. That’s cool. I’ll just stay here and fight off my captors alone. My eyes pleaded with him but he was quickly led away.

After about five minutes Brian was sent away from Nolan’s room, too. Poor guy. He ended up wandering through the halls, full scrubs, without either his wife or baby. He was hoping, I think, to be with at least one of us during this most critical time. But then I was hoping to not feel my surgery, so that made two of us who didn’t get what we wanted.


And that is pretty much how it went down.

Yes, I had “missed out” on the chance to be tough by laboring with my baby, but I was fortunate enough to get the chance to be tough by having abdominal surgery with meds that ran out part way through the operation. Silver linings!

This is my first photo with Nolan. I do not even remotely remember this moment. And I had read that I would “never forget the first time I held my baby in my arms.” I couldn’t remember it 5 minutes later. Based on this picture it was beautiful. And hairy. And heavily medicated with post-operative tranquilizers.

This is my first photo with Nolan. I do not even remotely remember this moment. And I had read that I would “never forget the first time I held my baby in my arms.” I couldn’t remember it 5 minutes later. Based on this picture it was beautiful. And hairy. And heavily medicated with post-operative tranquilizers.

Which would you prefer, c-section or natural childbirth? How was your labor and delivery? Let’s hear it. Be descriptive. I want to picture your baby crowning.


Related: Great Expectations: the Fart Heard Round the Room

Topics:Birth, Stories
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  • 2 out of my 3 babies were “sunny side up” – occiput posterior – and I had forgotten about the hip pain that broke through the epidurals with both of them until someone mentioned it earlier. Yeah. My water broke before labor started, I labored super long and pushed for multiple hours with both of them – while my middle child who was born in the normal, occiput anterior position had a 10 hour labor with 30 minutes of pushing. I’m expecting #4 this summer and needless to say I’m doing all the stretches Spinning Babies recommends to get this baby to engage properly!

  • I had all the same feelings as you, when I found out, I too would need a c section. My c section unfortunately, didn’t go smooth either. My spinal block took, I just hemorraged all the way through surgery and for a good 4 hours after. I do not remember my first picture of me holding my baby or a lot of that first day. I remember a very similar expression on my husband’s face as he was escorted out of the OR with our baby. There’s only one other moment I remember and it was while I was in recovery and the room was empty beside my husband and baby. My husband came over to my bed with the most intense look of love and pain on his face and said, “Don’t you dare leave me, don’t you dare!”

  • I’ve had two csections. With my first, I had a bad induction at 39 weeks because of potential for bp issues, and ending in fetal distress. The surgery itself was ok. Recovery was harder than necessary because the hospital didn’t give me any post care info beyond not lifting the car seat. With my second I was hoping to VBAC but correctly predicted it wouldn’t happen: miss flipped to transverse at 37 weeks and stayed that way. Again, ok procedure. Knew more so recovery is going better. Really annoyed by people saying I took the easy way, when what I did was take the way to keep us alive.

    • How is the “easy way” major abdominal surgery that includes ripping your guts and uterus out of your body, being sliced and stitched up and living through that pain after a life-threatening pregnancy? I’ve heard this, too,and it’s ridiculous. They obviously don’t get how dangerous surgery can be. I’m glad you are ok.

  • I wanted a natural birth so badly with my first, not because I wanted to feel powerful, but because I wanted to do every thing I could to make sure he was healthy. And I had read horror stories of complications from epidurals and inductions etc, I got a doula I went to natural birthing classes, I learned the breathing, the focusing, the positions to alleviate pain, I had a birth plan. And then I walked into my 39 week appointment got my blood pressure taken and they walked me to delivery.

    My blood pressure was soaring (almost seizure level) and they said we need to induce you. I still tried for natural labor I refused drugs for the first 4 hours or so, I was not allowed to move off my left side unless I had to pee. They ended up having to do internal monitoring and omg that hurt so bad, and my son kept dislodging it, what a stubborn kid, so they had to keep stabbing that thing in there, he came out with so many marks on his head.

    I think the pain in my hip was worse than most of the contractions, finally I couldn’t take it any more, I couldn’t move, I couldn’t do any of the pain relief techniques other than breathe and I was only 4 cm dilated. the pitocin crazed contractions were awful, they actually ended up turning down the pit, I got the epidural, it was so much better, my pain in my hip stopped it was wonderful, until I finally dilated, he wasn’t budging, he was at -3 for at least an hour and then they told me to try and push to bring him down.

    I pushed for about 45 minutes with no movement from him, he was still at -3 before they suggested the c section (later they tell me his head was stuck in my hip bone, basically presenting forehead).

    At this point I cried for my plans, I cried because the pain was back and it hurt like hell to push and I was just done so I said yeah, they gave me a bit more epidural and then off to the races. After they took the baby and were stitching me up I started to feel a bit more than I think I should, so I was like — Am I supposed to feel this, like there is a stitch, there is one, there is one. They gave me some gas. But I wasn’t all the way out. The nurse who was like I need ot push on your stomach now, I wanted to strangle her.

    Also, I ended up with a massive infection and abscess. I had to have a second surgery to clean the wound and was in the hospital for another week on intravenous antibiotics of all types. I had a wound vac installed and had to have a nurse come daily to change my wound vac dressing for about 2 months before I healed up. The only thing that did go to plan was that I was able to breast feed.

    Fast forward to my daughter’s birth, Everyone tells me a planned c section is so much easier…I changed doctors and hospitals, They gave me the option of a vbac, but I was scared by the fact of my healing on the last one and did not want to chance a rupture. So Planned c section at 39 weeks. This time I made it without any blood pressure drama. Came in early got vitals done, they cleaned me and we waited, they sent my husband to get scrubs while I would get the spinal.
    Sooooo 1 student anesthesiologist, and 2 experienced anesthesiologist later and about a thousand tries to dig into my spine (after I was black & blue up & down my spine for a good 6 inch length) a point where they hit a couple nerves and my leg was like “aahhh” , uncontrollable crying (I do not cry, I usually have a pretty high pain tolerance) and what seems like forever, they decide that I will be put under, by this point I am hyperventilating and my nose is full of snot so I have to blow and blow my nose and try to calm down before they can put the stuff on my face.

    The doctors are discussing the surgery as the gas is flowing and the last thing I hear is we should probably not close up the site and do a wound vac (I have a roll over the normal spot – I am fat and had a previous infection). So I wake up and in recovery, luckily I think the pushing on my uterus thing was done while I was still semi out. The first thing I ask is NOT where is the baby, its let me see let me see is it open?? hysterical crying —

    No I did not get a lovely wound vac instead they cut me above my roll meaning I have a incision scar about 2 inches south of my belly button that looks like a huge sad face. Later in the evening the nurses watching me notice that my stomach is purply black from my belly button down. After the doctor, comes in and basically insults me — says blah blah blah fat blah blah. Not even worth talking about, he says I probably lost more blood than they calculated based on BP too. So they give me blood. The first bag went fine.

    Its now the middle of the night, my husband has gone home to our son. By about 15-20 minutes into the second I tell the nurse I am very itchy. Did you know who can be allergic to blood that is your right blood type? I did not know this!

    She tells the doctor and (he doesn’t even bother coming in) and just says keep going and let him know if anything changes. So now its about 30 minutes and I am scratching like crazy and breathing funny and the nurse turns on the light to do vitals and she is like oh goodness, I’m covered in hives and she is just like crap, good thing she came in when she did because I started having trouble breathing and I have never seen so many nurses swarm into a room and move so fast, I got a shot of benedryl and oxygen. I called my husband to come back the next morning (he had work – yay crappy jobs) I wasn’t as bad but needed help with the baby moreso even.

    My belly was so black and blue even 4 weeks later and I started feeling a lump so I called in, they felt around and lo and behold I they want me to go get a scan to see whats going on. I go into doctor to get results and they want me to go back to hospital.

    I have a pocket of some type of fluid collection, pretty large, and apparently an abdominal hernia. in the spot of my last c section. They drain me and a spend a few days in hospital again. but luckily no wound vac and the fluid was not infectious, just apparently collecting. They can not fix the hernia for another 2 years, unless it becomes an emergency, so I heal before another abdominal surgery. My stomach has terrible scar tissue and if I over do it there is pain — my daughter is 9 months old, Dr says completely normal.

    I love my kids and would do it over again, but my husband and I have decided thats it, giving birth tries to kill me too much. I definitely think I got my stripes.

  • Birth however you need to birth. That’s what I’ve learned after 4 of them.

    For me, I realized that skin to skin contact right away was super important to me. I haven’t had a c-section, but ironically, the one time I went "all natural" with a midwife, was rather traumatic. Painful? Yes, definitely. Upside is there was very little pain after it was all over. Not much needed to heal. But she was whisked off to NICU right away, and I didn’t get to hold her and bond. And that affected me. It messed up my mothering…ness. I don’t know how else to describe it. Not everyone is like that, but the stress of the situation seriously compromised my identity of a mother, and it took this last pregnancy to get it back in its fullness.

    We didn’t plan on having a fourth, but I realized quickly why God had helped us along with a fourth child. She was a bit of a healing experience for me. I had an epidural, it was not "natural" as they say, but the hospital had a policy of one hour skin to skin right after birth. She didn’t leave my arms at all for hours, and it was glorious. I felt refreshed, renewed with vigor, and most importantly, very attached to baby Luna. (I’m very attached to all my kids of course! But there was a sort of instinct ignited with her that I didn’t know I had been without for a while. And that has made me better as a person and a mother to all four. Which I need…because there’s four of them and that’s bat crap crazy.)

    I didn’t even know I was missing that, but I was. And I’m glad I had it. So for me, vaginal birth was beautiful. It really was. But I love your perspective, and totally salute every mother in their journey. We’re all different. We all need different things.

  • I read so many wonderful tales of ‘natural’ chidbirth, and was extremely optimistic, especially about all the wonderful loving feelings that would explode out of me as angels sang and I held my new baby for the first time. Actually, it was shitty and traumatic. I am a competitive distance runner, and to the person who said ‘labor is no harder than an interval workout,’ um, NOT true. Such happy tales are exactly what led me to feel so betrayed and traumatized by my unmedicated vaginal birth. Dilation was just awful for me, and then I pushed for three hours, literally begging for someone to just rip me open. When I finally had my son in my arms, all I could think about was the fact that I was feeling all my stitches, the uterine ‘massage’ may possibly kill me, and why wouldn’t he stop screaming and snuggle up at my breast like all the natural birthies said he would??!! Where were all the loving feelings I was promised? I felt like I’d just been in a war. I had thought my way of birthing was the superior way, but truly, there is no good way out. That being said…I will probably do it again unmedicated, lol. Having a newborn is hard enough without recovering from abdominal surgery – C-section mammas are amazing, tough women who don’t get the admiration they deserve. Thrn again….what mamma does? 😉

  • I made it through a natural, unmedicated birth and would say that I had it much easier than these c-section horror stories, if only for the easier recovery. I felt great by day 3 and was weight training 2 weeks after delivery (don’t tell my doctor). I have nothing but respect for mommas who have c-sections. I would have collapsed those first few weeks if I was still feeling pain on top of no sleep.

  • My first child’s birth was terrifying and traumatic. You know the stories about how in the 1950s they used to strap laboring women down and put blindfolds on them and stuff? Well, in some rural, Midwestern hospitals they haven’t evolved much since then. I was scheduled for a planned CS, but my daughter had other plans and my water broke several days early, around midnight. This podunk rural hospital ( and yes, I can say that, having grown up in that town and worked at the Podunk Memorial) had two… TWO!!!… anesthesiologists that comprised its entire anesthesia department. One of them was unable and unwilling to administer spinals or epidurals due to a lack of skill and knowledge, and also, I was about to learn, any basic human compassion whatsoever. My CS had been scheduled for a day when the skilled spinal anesthiologist was on call. My water broke when The Most Useless Anesthesiologist On Earth (MUAOE from here on) was on call. Of course, he refused to even consult with me about local anesthesia and declared that "HER C-SECTION WILL BE DONE 6 HOURS FROM NOW AFTER I TAKE A NAP!". He then left the hospital. My water had been broken for an hour, I was already having massive 1-min apart contractions, and oh yeah, did I forget to mention that I have a completely fused spine with extensive hardware due to a nasty case of adolescent scoliosis. I also have 2 lumbar vertebrae with compression fractures, and spinal arthritis. Also, due to slight remaining scoliosis (yeah, I’m a hot mess spine-wise), my cervix can not dilate. So yes, I would be in terrible pain with 1-min-apart contractions for 6 hours, and yes, this would stress my poor baby who no longer even had amniotic fluid to cushion her little body, but the man needed his SLEEP people!!!! The OB nurses refused to give me anything for pain during these long hours, and they told me I could not get out of bed either because I had an IV in. After 6 hours, I was wheeled alone (because General Anesthesia) down to the OR, contracting all the way. Once in the OR, I was strapped naked to the table and left there for at least 7 full minutes, with my arms and legs tied down, through 7 or 8 full-blown contractions. Crying. With a roomful of assholes (excuse me, I mean nurses) standing around staring at the poor naked whale strapped to the table crying through her contractions alone. They chose the very peak on one nasty contraction to shove a foley catheter in me. Finally the sweet relief of unconsciousness came… and when I awoke, the most beautiful little girl I had ever seen in my whole life. Worth every terrible, sickening, traumatic second. But I’m pregnant again and you can bet your bootie I am delivering elsewhere this time.

  • Hi! Thanks for this article. I am 38 weeks alongnwith NY secondnright now and this baby keeps switching between being in the "right" position and being transverse. I know that if the baby is transverse when I go into labor and the Dr can’t shiftbit I will need a c section, and I don’t want that. Ita jot that I am really looking forward to pushing another football out of my hooha, I just don’t want major surgery. I don’t want to spend 5 days in the hospital away from my toddler, and I don’t want to spend the next 6 months recovering slowly because it will take that long, I am a slow healer. Because the baby keeps moving I am having weekly ultrasounds and nothing is decided as far as a xsection goes but I appreciate your article giving the situation a realistic look as well as some humor. Transverse is soooooo uncomfortable!

  • I ended up having a natural birth (you know, through the traditional path, but with all of the drugs) and with my son about to turn 1 year old, the memory of my hospital experience isn’t any less negative. Things were generally fine and pretty smooth due to the drugs, that is until baby was actually out of me. I started losing blood quickly and they had to manually remove my placenta (yeah, not even my husband had ever made up that far before) so that they could stop the hemorrhaging. It was terrifying. From what I hear from my labour and delivery nurse friends – this happens like once a shift. It is quite common, but I wasn’t given any direction on recovery besides ‘Try to take these iron pills, which have a side effect of making you constipated. Exactly what you want right now’. And the recovery from it was awful. They didn’t give me any extra blood, so I had a severe iron deficiency for the first few weeks of my son’s life and was even more tired than I should have been with the lack of sleeping. It was totally scary experience. When I saw my family doctor months after giving birth she read the notes from the hospital and said "Wow. No wonder you don’t want to have anymore kids."

  • I loved my home birth with my midwives!!! (midwifery is funded and regulated in my home province). I laboured for 4 hours total with three hours of active labour. It hurt like hell at the time (I was screaming for a c-section, haha), but felt one zillion times better when I got in the birthing pool. 30 minutes of pushing and my son was out. The closest thing I relate to the pain/experience of childbirth is doing a interval spin class where the devil is the instructor and you have no control over the resistance. Seriously. labour isn’t any harder then the worst interval fitness class you’ve ever done. The one where you felt like puking, but felt so amazing afterwards with those endorphins running through your body!

  • I had a c-section with my one and only full term pregnancy, so I can’t compare. My daughter was breech, and I did not qualify for an external version (I probably would have declined it, anyway, after reading the horror stories online), so c-section was my only option. It took a while for me to be okay with that. My original plan was an unmedicated vaginal birth, with me free to labor in any position for as long as needed, immediate skin to skin, and delayed cord clamping. I went through the Hypnobabies program, and hired a doula. I was crushed by the idea of a c-section, because at my hospital, they don’t do "gentle" c-sections, so no skin to skin until much later, no delayed clamping. Not to mention I was scared shitless by the idea of being cut open and the long recovery period. I didn’t want my birth experience to be full of medical procedures. Eventually, I came to terms with it, and overall, it wasn’t a bad experience at all. I actually went into labor about 7 hours before I was due to be at the hospital for my c-section. I got to experience my water breaking and a few hours of contractions. The toughest part was getting the spinal block while having contractions. But my doctor was wonderful, providing physical and emotional support while the anesthesiologist did his thing. I stayed on top of the pain medication, so I wasn’t miserable in pain. My doula stayed with me and helped with the baby for a few hours after the surgery. At home, I took advantage of all the help I could get, so I could recover more quickly. In the end, I’m happy with my birth experience. That said, unmedicated vaginal birth will be my top choice next time…..

  • My 9lb 9oz baby girl was born 9 days ago. I pushed for 4 hours (this is after starting the induction 20 hours prior to the pushing part). I got to hour 3 and was begging for something — pain relief, a break, a c-section, a vacuum — anything to get this girl out. I had an epidural but everything was so damn painful still. Some nurse decided to put a mirror up so I could see just how close she was with every push. Instead, all I saw was poop and hemorrhoids. That seriously was no help. Then they discovered that the epidural tubing was disconnected. No wonder I was in agony. I was also exhausted. Thankfully, another doctor came in the room who suggested forceps. I immediately said yes. They got me all prepped and reconnected my epidural and I made them move the mirror because I was not about to watch the massacre of my vag. It was 1 long push and she was out and it was such a relief. It was amazing and horrific at the same at time. They put her on my chest while they started stitching my 3rd degree tear. Tucks, depends and my peri bottle are my best friends at the moment.

  • Our little girl was an IUGR (intrauterine growth restricted) baby (very small for her size). I had literally 1 hour of established labour after being induced before she went into distress. They picked up her distress at 9:30pm, made the decision to do an emergency CS at 10:10pm. Due to the amount and severity of her distress, the decision was made for me to go under general anesthetic for the CS. Little Miss was born at 10:53pm. That has been one of the hardest things for me to deal with so far in my life. Going to sleep pregnant and waking up to magically having a baby (whilst screaming hysterically that it hurts!) has been the hardest part mentally. Thankfully the physical scars have healed a lot faster. So no, anyone who dares tell me that I had the "easy way out" hasn’t actually got a clue how damn hard it actually is.

  • My friend just posted a similar article and rant about how she is tired of people putting her down for having c-sections. I mean, really? I had a vaginal birth but don’t think one thing about how other people gave birth. What’s it to me? It’s not a walk in the park either way. I don’t understand how this is even a conversation that people have…everyone is eager to have had the hardest delivery.

  • It’s been 2.5 weeks since my first delivery. It was vaginal and all-natural and not at all what I thought it would be. You are correct: There is NO easy way to get that baby out! I did everything ‘right.’ I exercised, ate well, read about 6 different books on how to process thru delivery and was very optimistic. I heard about the amazing experience of giving birth without those pesky drugs and listening to your body’s needs. I wanted to be in touch with my inner female strengths and become empowered by the experience. I don’t feel any of that. I feel like I survived being hit by a bus. After 16 hours of contractions 2 minutes apart, puking up any food I tried to eat due to the pain, my body demanding me to push despite being dilating to a 9 with the pesky ‘lip’ that demanded that I hold off pushing until it was out of the way, and shoulder dystocia that ended with the doctor pulling my baby out of my vagina instead of me pushing it out, I’m sorry I didn’t ask for help with the pain. I hear time will soften the memory but honestly I feel really negative about my birth experience. I wish I had been more forgiving with myself in the moment so that I could feel less harsh about child birth. Not everyone gets to experience these amazing feelings of feminine power post-birth. I LOVE our little girl but she’ll be an only child unless we choose to adopt. 😉 I will never judge another woman on her choice to use pain meds or her situation leading to a c section or whatever. Don’t even get me started on breastfeeding… I’m in the midst of the struggle and hoping it gets drastically better soonish! I just don’t understand how the messages I receive are about how wonderful and natural these things are but my reality feels so different. Thankful for honesty found on your blog! And the humor that comes with it. Keep it up!

  • I’m sorry, but if c-sections are the easy way out I want NOTHING to do with a natural birth. The recovery was so difficult, I could barely get myself to the bathroom let along care for my own baby for two weeks.

  • After not feeling "tough enough" with my first c-section I decided to try a VBAC with number 2. This was a very bad decision. If it doesn’t come out easy the first time, even if you get them out the second time the path of destruction they leave behind might not be worth it!

  • Both my kids were emergency c-sections. My daughter was a water break at 36 weeks 6 days, and I didn’t go into labor until 4 hours later when they started the pitocin. Fast forward 10 hours and I’m dialated to a 5, so I told my doctor to do the c-section. Turns out she was wedged against my pelvis and we would have had to go that route either way.
    With my son, I tried for VBAC, but after my water broke(!) before I went in to be induced, once again, slow labor. Then he was going into distress, so c-section it was. And as he had meconium exposure and his umbilical wrapped around his throat, I’m not upset about it.
    That also sealed the deal for my husband and me:no more pregnancies

  • I pushed for 3 damn hours to get my little man out. My doctor told me his massive head was stuck under my pubic bone, and if "you could just push him around that corner" we’d be finished. Uhhhh, corner? I didn’t pay much attention in sex ed because I was giggling too much, but I was completely unaware my vagina had corners. The more you know…

    Anyway, after 3 hours, Ted’s head was swelling too much due to the damn corner in the way, and so I was prepped for a c-section. I cried, because I too wanted to feel the carnal pain of pushing this big-headed babe out of my lady bits. I already had my epidural by a man I SWORE I’d name my next baby after (ya know, because he made rainbows and unicorns appear after all that pain, and I had to pay him back somehow) so I was wheeled to the OR and my hubby, wide eyed, joined me. My doctor had already started cutting, and told me he was wearing his buffalo skin cowboy boots because "I can clean blood off of them pretty well". After that tidbit, I was in la-la land. I vaguely remember the anesthesiology telling me that he was gonna give me more pain meds, and told me to inform him if I felt pain. The only thing I could get out for 2 minutes straight was "my tongue is numb?! Is this normal? It feel great, but my tongue here is numb. Am I going to swallow it? Is that even a thing?"

    Finally, I heard a nurse say the time and I figured that the kid had been pulled out. My doctor peeked him over the corner, and there he was. My husband followed him to the weighing station, and when the nurse said he could touch him, my mega-germaphobe husband said "I haven’t washed my hands in a while, if rather not." Derp.

    After being pulled apart then back together again, I was wheeled into recovery and tried I breastfeed and do skin-to-skin. I was loopy, crying, and heavily sedated. Then some nurse told me that she was there to give me a uteran massage. How wonderful, I thought. That woman is a damn liar and I have no idea how she can live with herself with having a job like that. Massage, my ass.

    After that is a blur. So many people came to see the babe, and got some peeks of my milk jugs, too. Ahhhh, what a bonding moment for my single brother-in-law and I.

    It was a great day, one that I’ll only partially remember. Can’t wait to schedule the next one!

  • My first CS was after 24 hrs of unconscience labor (so many meds knocked me OUT), I stopped dialating at 8cm. Baby girl was born, I was put to sleep while they put me back together. I slept for almost 8 hrs before the Dr woke me to tell me my baby had a heart problem and was being life flighted to another hospital. We spent 3 days apart while hubby drove back and forth between the two of us. Once home my incision reopened and hubby has to pack medicated gauze into the opening every day. That hurt like HELL!! Baby girl is fine and now 9 yrs old.
    My second CS was completely different. 7 years after the first, it went so smoothly I told hubby I wanted to have another baby the following year. Haha!! No major drug reactions, easy healing, beautiful baby girl.

  • Oh this made me chuckle. I too took the "easy way" out with 2 c sections. Apparently my body makes breech babies. Unlike you though, I was fortunate my meds stayed in effect. But the whole thing is still effing terrifying. I saw another c section blog similar yesterday and thought "yes finally someone is saying c sections are no walk in the park." I never really wanted to participate in a normal delivery but I didn’t want elective surgery either. :-/ I’m glad c sections are getting more positive light shed on them now!

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