Wednesday, August 17, 2011

All the C-Section Ladies!

Now put your hands up!  Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh!

Oh, wait...  What?  That's not how the song goes?

I've been having an internal debate for some time now...

To c-section or not to c-section?  

Baby #2, that is... 

(Yes, I really am thinking that far ahead.  No, I am not pregnant.  Yet.)

My cesarean left me with a buttload of side effects, good and bad.  I feel muscle spasms and phantom baby kicks on the daily.  And if I'm really lucky, I'll get these sharp burning pains along my incision.  But you know what, I think I'd do it all over again.

Help me decide!  Lets weigh the pros and cons, shall we?

Less postpartum bleeding
Pain in a different area (belly, not the girly bits)
No painful sex
Plan for baby's arrival
Speedy delivery
No (potential) problems with incontinence or hemorrhoids 
No cone head baby

Can't hold baby right away
Daddy can't cut the cord
Repeat abdominal surgery may cause problems later in life (hernia, scar tissue)
Excruciating recovery when done med-free
Muscle spasms
Scar (which isn't even that bad)
I feel like I've failed as a woman.

I guess on that note, I should at least "try" a VBAC next time around.  I say "try" because with my luck, baby #2 (and #3 and #4) will be breech.  Where's that positive thinking when you need it?  I guess there's always the version - because that went over real well last time.

Any c-section mommas out there?  How was your recovery?  Are you thinking of trying a VBAC next time?  I'd love to hear any and all opinions on the matter! 


  1. Obviously I haven't had a csection...
    But the way I look at those pro/cons, the negatives are far more negative than the positives are positives...if you know what I mean??
    Like, not being able to hold the baby right away, and Dad not being able to cut the cord. Those are MAJOR things. But until you experience them, maybe they don't seem so major?
    Also, there is no guarantee that PP bleeding won't be as bad, or that sex won't be as bad. It may or may not, but I've heard a lot of people that have had CRAZY bleeding, and super terrible painful sex. It's just the luck of the draw each time.
    A lot of docs also won't do more than two csections. So you are better off at least working towards a VBAC if you want more than two kids.
    My honest opinion is that csections are wonderful, when NECESSARY. It is a great thing that we have the ability to help mums and babies when a vaginal birth is not an option. But if it is an option, it absolutely should be the best option (vag that is) as it doesn't have nearly as many complications.
    Babies are amazing either way, but actually being able to go through labour and delivery vaginally, that's priceless.

  2. I was a c-section momma also and want to try to do a VBAC next time. My recovery was not that bad I think, compared to others I have heard of anyways. I definitely agree with the Pros and Cons that you have listed. I did not have any labor at all (I came in to get induced but before I even started the induction her heart rate dropped super low so they got me into surgery within 30 min) and I have always felt like I failed as a women because I did not have any natural labor pains or anything.

    This is also something I think about constantly even though we are a year or more away from even thinking about getting pregnant again. I always think it is weird that I think about it so much that I am glad to see someone else is too!

  3. I'm a natural birth, med-free mama...and an RN and here's my take:

    * Less postpartum bleeding - you still bleed with a c-section, I bled for 6 weeks but it REALLY tapered off fast for me
    *Pain in a different area (belly, not the girly bits) - I'd much rather have swollen/sore girly bits for a week or so than to have major surgery AND have to care for a newborn AND a toddler
    *No painful sex - can't argue there, took months to feel normal again
    *Plan for baby's arrival - I liked letting my body take the natural course, going through my milk came in super fast
    *Speedy delivery - I'd like to think mine was too, only 6 hours of labour, 20 mins of pushing
    *No (potential) problems with incontinence or hemorrhoids - none of that with me
    *No cone head baby - my son wasn't cone headed

    That was just me, I know it's not always like that. If I were you, and you're in the safe zone to VBAC, I would give it a chance. You don't have to do it med-free or naturally, but your body was made to do it and it is extremely empowering as a woman, not to say that c-section mamas fail at all, but for me it was very empowering! :)

    Good luck in your decision.

  4. I was curios about a couple of things you posted in your cons.
    Dad not being able to cut the cord and not being able to hold baby right away. Were these things your Dr/hospital would not allow?

    I ask because with my second c/s (planned, not emergency like the first) Dad was able to cut the cord and hold baby within just minutes. And he is the one who brought baby over to me for me to see him for the first time.

    Plus, recovery (for me) was super quick the 2nd time and I was out of the hospital after just 2 nights because I didn't have a lot of pain and was feeling pretty great!

    1. Our hospital did not allow the father to cut the cord because that would mean letting him in the sterile area.

      And he was able to hold Lucy within a few minutes; he brought her over to me and introduced us. I was referring to myself not being able to hold the baby right away. Most women who deliver vaginally have the baby placed on their chest immediately after birth; I didn't hold Lucy until we were in the recovery room, 30-60 minutes after she was born.