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Am I crazy for wanting a c-section?

Discussion in 'Family, Home & Health' started by amc80, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. amc80
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    by amc80 » Sep 9, 2013
    I'd love opinions and experiences on c-sections. I'm not pregnant, but we will be trying in a few months. My first experience with birth was awful (my son is 13 months, and it's still as scary as it was a year ago). I was induced a week early for a variety if reasons, mainly my son was measuring really big and I had mild pre-e....plus I had been having contractions from 29 weeks on and enough was enough. Labor was tough. It was mainly back labor, saved only by the epidural. My epidural then ran out as soon as I reached 10cm. I was assured it would be fine because I had at least 2 hours of relief even though it was empty. I ended up pushing for 3.5 hours and was throwing up stomach acid between pushes.. My son kept turning a weird way. The doctor would turn him and he'd move right back. He ended up coming out with his head sort of diagonal to the direction it should have come. This resulted in a giant hematoma on the back/side of his head. He had this weird bump thing for months and even now it's still there if you feel for it (the pediatrician said it can take a year or so to completely heal). When my son finally came out I was more relieved that it was over than that he was there.

    Recovery wasn't much better. It was a good 6-8 weeks before I could fully walk without pain. My bladder/pelvic floor was a mess and I had to go to physical therapy. I had a lot of scar tissue "down there" that had to be worked out by the therapist. All in all, it was a good six months before I was completely back to normal (but, really, will my bladder ever be the same?).

    Having said all this, I want to request a c-section for next time. I think the birth left me with mild PTSD (or as close to it as you can get). The idea of going through it again is beyond frightening. I have my annual exam next month and will talk to my doc about it. I've had a lot of friends who have had c-sections and recovery just seems so much more predictable. Then, on the flipside, I have the friends who say how much easier #2 was and that I'm crazy for wanting a c-section.

    I'd love to hear from any of you who can chime in.
     
    


    


  2. monkeyprincess
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    by monkeyprincess » Sep 9, 2013
    amc, hopefully somebody who has had both a vaginal delivery and c-section can chime in with advice. I just wanted to say that I remember reading about your delivery right after B was born, and now after reading it again, you really have my sympathy. That sounds so miserable. And I do not blame you for being scared of going through that again. Hopefully your doctor will be able to give you a realistic assessment of your risk of having another complicated labor/delivery given your history and estimated size of your next baby once you are pregnant. My labor/delivery was not as brutal as yours, but I too had a pretty big baby for my size/pelvis, and at a couple points, the doctor seemed to think I would need a c-section. I'm glad I didn't have one, but I was pretty traumatized afterward and questioning whether I ever wanted to go through that again. I also have some lingering bladder issues that I worry about reaggravating. My doctor keeps saying the next one will be a piece of cake after that, but you just never know until you're in the situation.
     
  3. Loves Vintage
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    by Loves Vintage » Sep 9, 2013
    AMC - Wow, our birth experiences sound quite similar, except I was 11 days past due, and I pushed for just under 3, until doctor used a vacuum to reposition my daughter's head, and that's all it took. Thankfully, there was not a mark on her, however. My doctor reassured me, during delivery, that she promised my experience was paving-the-way for future children. I too had an epi that must have worn off during the pushing stage because I felt everything, which my doula assured me was a good thing when I was just starting to push. I too vomited throughout labor. (I'm actually glad you mentioned that. No one ever does, and I was never sure if that was "normal.") I also cried (during the vomiting parts mostly), and screamed. I screamed a lot. I was actually a little embarrassed when they wheeled me past the nurse's station because I was so, uhm, vocal during my labor. Haha. Everyone told me that I pushed really well when I screamed, so I guess I just went with it. This was all amidst the chanting music we had playing in the background because I was fully intending to hypnobirth my little one. Haha. I guess labor plans really can change once you get started!

    Anyway, with all that said, what I find fascinating is that despite the uhm . . . discomfort at the time, I regard my daughter's birth as the single most beautiful and empowering moment of my life. I almost immediately wanted to do it again. I had MAJOR baby fever during her first year.

    And with that said, and thinking about it some more, I could totally see how you could feel as you do. I think you should have a heart-to-heart with your dr and see what he says. Maybe there's some happy medium like you could try for a vaginal delivery and if it doesn't work, then move to a C after a certain period of time. I have been told it is easier with subsequent births, but honestly every woman is different and every birth is different, so there is no way of predicting that for sure.
     
  4. JGator
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    by JGator » Sep 9, 2013
    AMC, I had a c-section since K was breech. I would recommend it. In the hospital, it was difficult getting into/out of the hospital bed because of the incision, but I did feel better than I expected after going home, and I was able to climb stairs without much difficulty. I liked that I came to the hospital and had the baby without being in labor at all. I took Advil for the pain as I didn't want to take the stronger stuff and deal with possible constipation issues, and that was enough for me and I'm usually someone who likes to take a lot of medication whenever I'm sick. That has totallly changed now that I'm still pumping though and rarely take any medication for fear of it getting into the breast milk. My mother has bladder issues all related to having children. She has had surgery and likely needs another surgery, but she doesn't want to go through it again. Her doctor told us that he would make sure his daughters had c-sections so that they would not have the stress on their bladders that go along with vaginal births.
     
    


    


  5. monarch64
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    by monarch64 » Sep 9, 2013
    I don't think you're crazy at ALL for wanting a c-section after what you went through with your first. I think it is wise to factor your first experience into how you prefer the next to go. I also think that if a c-section will allow you a somewhat less traumatic time you owe it to both your kids and family to have the procedure if it is likely you'll heal better and faster. In your shoes I would honestly feel the same way.
     
  6. NewEnglandLady
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    by NewEnglandLady » Sep 9, 2013
    I'm not necessarily pro c-section (and was actually hoping to go the VBAC route this time), but in your situation I would recommend it. Aside from hemorrhaging 2 weeks after my c-section, I found the healing process to go quicker and be less painful than expected. In fact, the reason I hemorrhaged is because I was doing too much, too soon, but only because I was feeling good.

    More than anything, I think taking the worry (and stress) out of anticipating the birth would be beneficial for you. Like you said, I do think a c-section is more predictable than a vaginal birth. And if you could take the anxiety about going through a traumatic birth again, I think it would be healthiest for you (and the baby).
     
  7. amc80
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    by amc80 » Sep 9, 2013
    Thank you for all of your responses. I forgot to mention the biggest gem of all- the morning after, when I finally saw my OB (she didn't deliver me), her first comment was "I was monitoring you on my phone and didn't think you were going to be able to deliver naturally." Ummmm then how about calling in at the two hour mark rather than torturing me? Ugh.

    That's my fear. Yeah, the second should theoretically be easier, but what if it's not? And aren't second babies often bigger than the first?

    I think this is a great idea. I would ideally love to go into labor on my own (so I know the baby is ready) and then just go to the OR instead of the delivery room. I understand why that probably won't happen (with scheduling and all) but it would sure be nice. I think what you said is a great suggestion.

    JGator- that is basically what I have heard. It's rough at the beginning but the recovery is pretty easy after that. And all of the pain/issues are in your abdomen vs. having to sit on a pillow for a month.

    Monarch- Thank you...it's nice to not feel crazy :)

    My other option would be to just half a$$ through labor. "Oh yeah I'm pushing as hard as I can, weird there's no progression." Not sure if that would work. I will be very interested to see what my OB has to say. I mean women get "stuck" with c-sections all the time for lack of progression, high blood pressure, etc. Right?
     
  8. amc80
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    by amc80 » Sep 9, 2013
    It's funny, before giving birth I was fairly anti-c, especially those prescheduled ones. I was also against inductions. It's funny how opinions and minds can change once you are in the situation.

    Thanks for the input on the healing process. That is sort of what I thought. With a vaginal delivery there are just so many variables. I never ever thought it would be a 6 month recovery. I can't even imagine what another 3 hours of pushing would do to my pelvic floor.
     
  9. packrat
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    by packrat » Sep 9, 2013
    when I saw the title of the thread, I thought um yeah, duh! Then I saw what you went thru and will now say um no, duh!

    I would want to have a C-section after all that too! I got to experience labor w/London, and failed to progress so ended up having a section after about 40 hours of being wrung out like a sponge. I was scared when I went in to have Trapper, but not having to go thru labor and spend like almost 2 days not eating, not getting any rest etc etc, that all made a huge difference. I got up in the morning, drove 1.5 blocks to the hospital, got prepped, and there he was. Recovery still sucked, surgery isn't a walk in the park at any time, much less having a newborn and a 3 year old to take care of. But the delivery and the rest of it was so much easier. There was a lot less stress and no wrung out sponge feeling.
     
  10. ponderer
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    by ponderer » Sep 9, 2013
    I would personally never do a c section but agree that it might be the best option for you. I have EASY labors. I'm that chick every laboring woman loves to hate. I love labor and delivery because its so easy and fast. That being said my labor got longer with each baby, not shorter. I also carried longer with each pregnancy. There is no way to know for sure that the next one will be easier, even a little.
     
    


    


  11. Niel
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    by Niel » Sep 10, 2013
    I wont go too into it but i had an absolutely terrible birth experience like you did. I never fully dilated for my last pregnancy, and my daughter had a 95 percentile head circumference (though the doc assumed she was only 70th percentile) they also gave me a drug they knew i was allergic to because my active labor took so long i got a fever, causing a full body rash that kept me from sleeping or being able to feed my DD. ( i nearly had to go to the hospital!). I have scarring from a full episiotomy they gave me. And my epidural was administered 24 hours before my birth (as they thought i would be having her much sooner than i did) so that was not doing me much :lol:

    I will not, if i ever decide to have a child again, have a vaginal birth! And i completely understand why you will not either! Being in a very similar situation as you have been, i completely understand, and i do think its probably best for both you and baby.
     
  12. Missy0483
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    by Missy0483 » Sep 10, 2013
    Well if it makes you feel better, I'm kinda happy that my doctor doesn't do VBACs. My first I was induced at 39w1d due to pregnancy induced hypertension and ended up with a c-section at 39w3d, about 60 hours after induction began. I was fully dilated, he had just flipped sunny side up and was not descending fully. It was WAY too long of a process. My recovery was pretty good actually. It was just hard getting in and out of bed, but once I was up it wasn't horrible. The gas pains were kinda bad and I had to ask for an enema before I was discharged for some relief. I did bleed for about 2 weeks after and never got a PP AF on my own and wasn't breastfeeding, so I started BC pills after 70ish days of no AF.
     
  13. nkarma
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    by nkarma » Sep 10, 2013
    I have a friend who is a therapist specifically for mothers who underwent traumatic births. She says they have PTSD. In addition to the medical doctor you speak with, visiting a therapist may be a good idea too especially since you feel the same as a year ago.
     
  14. qtiekiki
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    by qtiekiki » Sep 10, 2013
    2nd baby isn't always bigger. My son was smaller (6oz smaller), even though I went over my EDD. You can't really predict anything. My DD was 3 days early, and I had to be induced with DS. I got an episiotomy with DD, and just a small tear with DS. He came out while I was laughing, and I barely had to push. So even though I needed to be induced, the whole thing was easier.

    I wouldn't opt for your other option. Emergency c-section is much more stressful than a planned one.
     
  15. StacylikesSparkles
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    by StacylikesSparkles » Sep 10, 2013
    A little crazy, but based on the birth experience you had previously, I totally understand the want for something perfectly different. That said, you're asking for major abdominal surgery where you will have to recover while waking up every few hours to feed and care for a newborn. That scares the crap out of me!

    I've been doing a lot of research on labor and delivery and found that many women who are induced tend to have more problems/complications with delivery and actually about 75% of women who are induced before they have reached 4cm will have a c-section. Have you considered waiting to deliver when the baby is ready to come? I'm not sure that you mentioned the weight your son was at birth though, so I'm sorry if I missed it. I know you mentioned the dr thinking he would be on the larger size, so I'm just curious with the weight.

    Regardless, you have to do what is right for you. I watched a good friend have a c-section (baby was breech) and she was in HORRIBLE pain for a good month after baby was born and was very limited on what she could do on her own due to the surgery. Will you have someone around to help you 24-hours a day if you do opt for a c-section?
     
    


    


  16. dani13
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    by dani13 » Sep 10, 2013
    It's hard to say....technically, a vaginal delivery is much safer than a cs, which is a major abdominal surgery. But I totally understand that you went through a lot to have B, and surely there are women who have a first experience similar to yours and just opt for a cs straight out the second time. It happens everyday, and a woman has the right to make that choice.

    I myself had a elective cs for my first baby. I do have a pre existing medical condition involving my bladder and pelvic floor that was almost all of the reason why I opted for it, but also my years and years of labor and delivery experience just traumatized me and I didn't want to go though that myself, to be honest. I actually broke my water at home, started contracting immediately, and showed up at the hospital already 3-4 cms. My doc asked me again if I wanted to try to deliver vaginally, but I told him no and just asked him to take me to the OR. All in all, my surgery went great, pretty easy recovery, etc. I do wonder if I made the right decision sometimes, but what's done is done...i had a healthy baby, and at least no issues with aggravating my bladder and I'm happy about that.

    Anyways, I think you need to do what you're comfortable with. Definitely discuss this with your doc., and if it makes sense to just have the cs, then go for it. But I will say that second babies are typically MUCH easier than the first, and it should be a much easier delivery and recovery if you opt to go the vaginal route.
     
  17. amc80
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    by amc80 » Sep 10, 2013
    I'm loving all of these responses. It really gives me some things to think about. It also helps me to feel like less of a wimp if I go for the c-section.

    I didn't even think about that. Yeah by the time B was born it was like "okay, great, now can I eat and sleep?"

    Yikes, that's so scary!

    Sounds about right :) I remember when my aunt had my cousin, the lady she was sharing a room with walked out 24 hours after giving birth in skinny jeans and high heels. :roll:

    Missy- Thanks for sharing your c-section experience.

    Huh, didn't even know this existed. It seems like this is something they should go over in birth class. I have never heard of women having PTSD from birth and didn't think it could be possible. I will definitely consider this.

    That is a good point. I guess I can't have the best of both worlds. A friend of mine had a scheduled c-section (due to previous surgery) and her water broke a couple of weeks early. Not an emergency situation, though.

    He was 8lbs 11.5oz and 22 inches long, with a big old head. I was only slightly dilated when they induced me but he was really far down (I want to say +1 but can't remember). I've thought about how the sucky labor could just be a result of being induced. But I really do believe that had I gone to term I wouldn't have been able to have him naturally anyway.

    That's the only reason I'm questioning all of this. If there was a way I could get that guaranteed I'd probably go for it :)
     
  18. NewEnglandLady
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    by NewEnglandLady » Sep 10, 2013
    I can understand wanting to go into labor naturally, then going the c-section route if needed. Especially if you aren't laboring really quickly. It sounds like that worked really well for Dani. I also had a planned c-section scheduled for a week prior to my due date, however went into labor early. I labored very quickly, so my situation was an emergency one where I was at 10 cm and was pushing when they were trying to prep me for surgery. Granted, I can't have an epidural and was going under general anesthesia, so there was slightly more anxiety. I only bring it up because I think there are some risks with going into labor naturally, but only if you labor quickly.

    How does your doc feel about it knowing what you went through? My doc knows I was freaked out by my ordeal and told me she doesn't want me going through it again. We've come up with a slightly different plan this time, though I still have a scheduled C-section. I'm just curious if she has weighed in.

    One last thing I just wanted to bring up because it is a consideration for me is time in the hospital. I didn't mind staying in the hospital for 4 days last time, but now that I have a toddler, it's more difficult. My doc said that most second-time Also, I'm still figuring out how long D should stay home. If K is still going to daycare every day, it's less of a consideration, but if K is home, D will need to stay home longer to help me out. I just think recovering from a C-section will be tougher with a toddler at home.
     
  19. amc80
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    by amc80 » Sep 10, 2013
    I haven't even seen my doctor since the hospital. She wasn't available for my PP checkup and I haven't been back since (oh, except for when I had thrush, but I saw a NP). So this will all be news to her.

    I don't think the toddler will be an issue. He will be at daycare and my mom will be around to help otherwise.
     
  20. FrekeChild
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    by FrekeChild » Sep 10, 2013
    If I have another one, I'm scheduling a c-section. My birth was no where near as bad as yours, but I wouldn't do it again.
     
  21. amc80
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    by amc80 » Sep 10, 2013
    Isn't it awful? I don't think anyone really prepares you for it. I always figured it would be bad, but the kind of bad that you'd forget as soon as the baby was in your arms.

    Has anyone done marathons? I've done a full and several 1/2s. The morning of a race, when I'm getting out of bed at some horrible hour, I'm always telling myself I'm nuts. This same thinking goes all the way through to the finish line. Something always hurts and around miles 10-12 I really think I'm crazy. But then, as soon as I cross the finish line, I think "wow, that wasn't really that bad, I think I'll sign up for another." THAT'S what I thought birth would be like. Instead, I see it as a necessary evil. If that's what I have to do to get a baby, then fine, but I will seek alternatives (now, if only there were an easy, cheap alternative to pregnancy...).
     
  22. heididdl
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    by heididdl » Sep 10, 2013
    When I was pregnant (I have had three children since then) I actually was so against c section that I had a birthin plan for no drugs and n ce section That being said.

    I exercised my entire pregnancy in preparation for a healthy vaginal delivery. I watched my weight and followed all orders and directions from the dr. I am only 5 1 and had nearly 8 -9 lb babies with no trouble.

    I think alot has to do with your physical ability and health.

    if you had such a bad experience it might just be the way you have to give birth. No one is judging the key is to deliver a healthy baby and for you to be able to recover and be able to care for your baby.

    I really wanted to be up and ready so I gave up alot to be really fit to deliver and I was up and doing laps around nurses station within hours after each birth.....

    again what ever is best for you and your baby is what is best for you and your family :appl: :appl: :appl: :appl: :appl: :appl: :appl: :appl: :appl:

    yes I have done marathons anb 1/2 marathons and I think they helped with the duration of labor and the breathing didn't it help you.
     
  23. amc80
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    by amc80 » Sep 10, 2013
    That's true, but not everything was in my control. I was exercising regularly until 29 weeks when I started having contractions. So from week 29-39 I wasn't able to do any physical activity. I was in great shape going into pregnancy and I can only imagine how bad it would have been had I not been in good shape to start. I also think I would have been in a better position to get the kid out had I not had 12+ hours of continual back labor. That is just exhausting regardless of your fitness level.
     
  24. heididdl
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    by heididdl » Sep 10, 2013
    Again , what ever is the safest for you your baby and your dr comfort level for both of you is most important.

    All three of my labor were also at least 12 hours not fun especially watching the husband having lunch in the room while I am having contractions I wanted to clobber him lol
     
  25. amc80
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    by amc80 » Sep 10, 2013
    Yea, mine was sound asleep on the foldout chair thing all night long, while I was having horrible back labor and contractions like 3 minutes apart. Grrrr.
     
  26. mia1181
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    by mia1181 » Sep 10, 2013

    Um I was very fit throughout my pregnancy. I ran races and triathlons until I was like 34 weeks and then I switched to swimming laps right up until the day I went in labor. I only gained the recommended 25 pounds. I was the picture of health and still had a 36 hour labor that ended with a c-section. I did every thing I could to prepare myself for labor but I ended up with a big sunny side up baby!

    I don't think you are crazy at all for wanting a c-section this time! I hope if I have to have another I am able to go into labor on my own first. My baby was so healthy and never had any breathing problems when she was born and my doctor said it helped that she had the labor too.
     
  27. Dandi
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    by Dandi » Sep 11, 2013
    I'm absolutely astounded that anyone would tell you you're crazy for wanting a c/s, or a vaginal birth, or a waterbirth with freakin' dolphins flapping about, and angels flying around playing harps for that matter. I mean for pete's sake!!! It's your body!!! It's your birth experience! Maybe it's because I work in an aspect of the baby-delivering industry, but man, I get really ticked off when I hear stuff like that.

    I laboured for 20 hours and ended up having an emergency c/s. At the beginning of my labour my son's head was engaged, he was in a great position, I laboured fine without drugs etc etc, everything looked peachy. Despite that, the little monkey turned and got his boof head really, really stuck, and was terribly distressed. He couldn't move down, but no one could move him back up either, and nothing I did worked either. My contractions were only about 20 seconds apart towards the end, so my body was working so hard to get him out, but that kid wasn't going anywhere! So obviously it was the best, quickest course of action for us both. You just never know which way things will go.

    I work in the OR and have seen too many deliveries go frighteningly wrong in the blink of an eye, when they started out normally with no signs of trouble. In your case, you've been there, and don't want to chance going there again. You should absolutely do what you feel is right for you. I am not pregnant yet, nor are we trying any time soon, but I will be having a scheduled c/s with baby #2. I had mild PPD after having Oscar, and the delivery was thought to be a part of that, even though at the time, I thought nothing of it. I didn't care that I needed a c/s in the slightest. My baby's health was at risk.

    Recovery was easy peasy from a surgical perspective. I was on painkillers and anti-inflammatories in hospital, and by the day I was discharged (day 6) I was taking Paracetamol morning and night, with no need for anything else. After 9 days I took no pain relief at all. Not driving for a few weeks was a bit of a pill, but hey, I had a newborn and wasn't looking my best, so didn't really fancy leaving the house much anyway :bigsmile: DH did all the housework for the first month or so, and by about week 5-6 I was pretty much back to normal. My belly ached a bit if I overdid things, like carting around too many loads of washing etc, but that's pretty benign in the whole scheme of things!

    Sorry, I tend to yabber on a bit ;)) Bottom line, crazy?! Absolutely NOT. If I were is your position, and the mere thought of another vaginal delivery was causing me such anxiety, I would have a c/s too.
     
  28. megumic
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    by megumic » Sep 11, 2013
    Amc, I think my comments over in WBW might hvae sparked this thread, so I'll chime in!

    I do not think you are crazy for wanting a cs, particularly in the context of your situation and PTSD feelings. I have been diagnosed with PTSD from my birth experience and am dealing with those feelings and preparing for the next birth as best I can so I totally understand where you're at.

    I agree with Dandi in that everyone should choose the birth that is right for them. No judgment here.

    I will say from my experience my cs recovery was horrible. The surgery left me groggy, unable to move, the meds were awful and made me practically nod off, the baby was sleepy, etc. It is major abdominal surgery and it feels like you've been sawed in half. I was unable to do anything physical for 2 weeks. Even then, a walk around the block was difficult. At 10 weeks I was back to exercising, but things still didn't feel 100% and they still don't. I have about a 6 inch scar that I absolutely abhor to remind me of it every day. The area between my bellybutton and scar is partially numb and it feels very uncomfortable to ahve anything brush against it. If I accidentally bump the area on a table or C jumps on me, it is still painful.

    Also, I think it's a key fact that you were induced. That makes labor significantly more difficult -- you're trying to start a natural process artificially so your body is kicking and screaming the whole way there. I also think it's important to understand the benefits of a vaginal birth. Babies are able to breathe better afterwards (fluid in lungs are squeezed out through birth canal), flora from the birth canal make its way to baby's gut improving their digestion, if you intend to breast feed your milk can take longer to come in with a cs (mine took SIX days - it was awful), oxytocin hormone release at time of labor/delivery, etc. There is a whole lot more behind all of this, but I just wanted to point out a few b/c they are worth considering.

    Depending on how many children you want, the more c-sections you've had, the higher your risk of uterine rupture goes. I don't know the exact stats, but one cs increases the risk, and then with a 2nd cs, the risk doubles or something like that. Tori Spelling had issues after her 4th cs and I think its important to be aware of the risks associated with repeat csections. http://news.health.com/2012/09/28/tori-spelling-and-the-risks-of-multiple-cesarean-sections/

    So in sum, no, I don't think you're crazy. Birth trauma is REAL and I know that first hand. That said, I think it is really important to be aware of the risks, complications and long-term effects of a cs. I think it has to be a balancing of your mental/emotional health with other factors in your pregnancy, what's important to you, your careprovider, etc to determine the best mode of delivery for you and #2. For me, the benefits must outweigh the risks when it comes to things like this and only you can make that decision.
     
  29. NewEnglandLady
    Ideal_Rock

    Messages:
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    by NewEnglandLady » Sep 11, 2013
    Amen, sister! I couldn't agree more!
     
  30. Laila619
    Super_Ideal_Rock

    Messages:
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    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2008
    by Laila619 » Sep 11, 2013
    After giving birth to a 9lb 6 ounce baby vaginally and not getting stitched up properly, I'd say no, you are not crazy for wanting a C-section at all. I WISH I would have had one myself!

    The only thing I fear about a C-section is the scar. I tend to scar easily so I am picturing a really bad scar across my stomach.
     

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