The decision to have a C-Section is not always an easy route to go with. As with any surgical procedure, there are so many risks with surgeries and this one is no different. I must say upfront I was terrified to go this route with my first pregnancy. Just like any other first time mom, I had this set plan in my mind that I was determined to go with no matter what and had made the decision that nothing was going to change that.
But I was wrong.
The Magical but Scary Experience
The birth of my first child was a truly beautiful yet scary experience. I was excited and anxious, but I was also afraid and didn’t know what to expect fully even though I had great doctors by my side that I had been visiting for the past nine months whom had repeatedly told me what to expect and how to prepare for it. This was all still very new for me. As I stated before, I was completely wrong about my entire birth plan when delivery time came around. I had planned to go as far as I could without an epidural, in my mind being a superwoman, and then give birth to my baby just like the magical pregnancies and deliveries on television. The sweat. The pain. And then the joy of seeing my first child’s cute little face crying while her dad cut her umbilical cord. But all of that changed once I got to the hospital.
I was dilated pretty good once I arrived and they took me straight back into what they called the triage room and then into my very own birthing room. Everything was beautiful so far even though I was in a lot of pain. My room was comfy and spacious and very welcoming under the circumstances. I realized upfront that I would need the epidural immediately once the real deal contractions began to happen and I was doing pretty good until we reached the 10th centimeter of dilation. The big moment of arrival for my little one. But an emergency began to take place quickly with me and my baby to the point where we had to do an emergency C-Section procedure and honestly at the time this crushed me but it wasn’t the end of the world.
This is my whole point of writing today to let you know that having a C-Section as your delivery route is not the end of the world so to say and can still be a beautiful experience with the right preparation and guidance around you. The tips that I will be giving in this article are from my own personal experience with having a C-Section done, but it doesn’t mean that yours will go exactly like mine and you should always follow the guidelines of your doctor before anything. Everyone’s pregnancy is not the same even if we have the same experiences so just keep that in mind. These are just my recommendations and my point of view, not licensed or certified medical advice.
5 Tips for a C-Section Birth
1. Pack your Hospital bag early
When my water broke, I immediately regretted not already having my bag fully packed and ready to just grab and walk out the door. I had a majority of the major things already packed but some things were missing that I knew I would need in the event that we had to stay overnight for more than one or two nights. With everything happening so fast, I could barely think straight to make sure I was not forgetting anything but I did my best. I also had things in my bag that I didn’t even use like for example all of these cute outfits. While in the hospital I kept on the same robe that they gave me the entire time. I never wore all of those cute clothes I had purchased. Never had the chance to change clothes really.
The robe that was provided was comfortable and I couldn’t get up and walk around once the C-Section procedure was over with anyways so I really didn’t need my own clothes until it was time for me to leave the hospital. I would recommend wearing something comfortable to the hospital and then having one outfit of choice that is comfortable for you to wear when leaving the hospital. Keep everything simply on your end. One item that I was thankful that I did include in my bag were my comfy, fluffy socks and some house shoes. It gets cold in hospital rooms often so these came in handy while sleeping and resting.
You don’t necessarily have to pack a ton of stuff for your baby either. I included plenty of diapers but the hospital provided those so again those were one of the items that I didn’t need to pack. My baby didn’t need a ton of cute outfits either because with the timing of my delivery I gave birth in the middle of the global pandemic that we now know as Covid-19 so there weren’t a lot of people like family and friends in my room taking pictures of my baby and no hospital photographer was available to take pictures of those special moments at the time due to hospital policies with covid restrictions. Those tiny little outfits could wait until once we were home with our little one to take a ton of photos for my little one’s baby book.
A toothbrush was needed but not a lot of hair products. I would recommend fixing your hair into a style that requires low maintenance when it gets to the time closer towards your delivery date that way you don’t have to worry about it. Also don’t worry about being pretty and stylish. This is a surgical procedure, not a beauty pageant.
2. Be prepared to not be able to walk around at all.
This is one thing that I was not prepared for at all. I could not just simply get up out of the bed when I felt like it without the assistance of the nurse or my child’s father. That first day afterwards and night, I couldn’t use the bathroom on my own at all. I needed help. Surprisingly, I couldn’t even get back into the bed on my own.
Keep in mind, you are being cut open and this is not to scare you but the area where you will be cut open sort of controls a lot of your body movements that you may take for granted on a regular basis like walking and lifting your legs and even simply rolling over to sleep. Have someone you can trust to help you through all of this with you at the hospital while you begin your recovery after the C-Section procedure.
3. Prepare to stay on the first floor for a couple of weeks
If you’re in a two-story home, go ahead and prepare to stay on the first floor of your home for a couple weeks while you recover from your C-Section procedure. Again, where you will be cut at, you will not be able to move freely so don’t even think about going up and down any stairs at all. If you have an additional room downstairs, go ahead and set that room up for yourself and your baby and be prepared to be in that room for weeks at a time. You don’t want to rush the process of recovering or you’ll risk injuring yourself pretty badly.
4. You will have a completely new body after your C-Section.
Do not expect for your body to just snap back in place within a couple weeks. I am now one year and a month postpartum as of today and I am just now being able to fully workout in the gym like I normally would before my pregnancy. I know some women who were able to hit the gym and go back to work fully after 6 weeks of being postpartum though. It all depends on your body and you should definitely feel great about this.
Your body just carried a whole human being and protected your little bundle of joy for 6 straight months and then was able to birth your child through a risky surgery. Your body is tired. Rest is apart of your postpartum self-care and you can never get too much of it during this time period. The more you allow your body to rest fully, the quicker your body will heal and you can get back to your normal routine of life.
5. Milk of Magnesia is your friend.
Listen after a C-Section or really any form of birth delivery, you will be constipated and all backed up. Your body is getting back normal and that includes your bowel movements as well. Milk of Magnesia should be in your bathroom cabinet ready to go when you get home from the hospital. It helps alot! I preferred the cherry flavor.
I hope these tips helped you with you recovery and I wish you all the best in your delivery of your new bundle of joy!
Check out my blog at www.deluxds.com/art-mom for more great motherhood and parenting tips!