Today I wanted to share a little about my experience with getting a Cesarean section and my recovery.
But first, I want to say that this was just my experience. I realize that every woman is different!
As I mentioned in Addie’s birth story, I had to get an emergency C-section. I had intended to deliver vaginally, so I was less than thrilled with the decision, but I knew that it was best for Addie.
The procedure itself wasn’t too bad. I had already been given an epidural, so they just increased the amount of medication that I was getting. I couldn’t feel any pain whatsoever.
The only part I didn’t like was that I couldn’t stop shaking. It was a side effect of the epidural, and it drove me crazy! I also felt a bit breathless, but it mostly had to due with the fact that I couldn’t stop crying!
The doctors explained everything as they were going. Brandon sat by my side and prayed with me. Then, before I knew it, my doctor was telling Brandon to stand up because Addison was about to make her arrival!
I hated that I wasn’t able to hold her right away, but I was thankful to at least have a few minutes with her before they whisked her away.
After she was born, it took about 20 minutes or so for the doctor to stitch me back up. During that time, I felt a little uncomfortable because the nurses and doctor were chatting away about unrelated topics, while I was sitting there in tears, wanting to be with my baby girl.
For the first 24 hours after the procedure, I wasn’t able to get out of the hospital bed. But after that first day, the nurses helped me to slowly get up and use the restroom (I’ll tell you … you lose all humility and pride after having a baby!). After another day, I was able to move around by myself, albeit slowly. I was encouraged to take slow walks around the hospital floor to help my body heal, which I did several times a day. I was even allowed to shower and wash my hair, which made me feel human again!
Throughout my time at the hospital, I was given two types of pain medications several times a day. The medication helped significantly in the beginning, when the incision was still causing me a good deal of pain.
By the time I left the hospital, I was feeling pretty good! The nurses and doctor all commented that they were impressed by how quickly I was recovering.
For the first two weeks after I left the hospital, I had some strict rules from the doctor that I had to follow:
1. No driving.
2. If I had to ride in the car at all, it had to be short trips.
3. I had to slowly go up and down the stairs.
4. I wasn’t allowed to carry anything heavier than Addie.
5. I wasn’t allowed to carry anything up or down the stairs.
Truth be told, I broke rules 3-5 on occasion. But overall, I did try to take it easy.
I was given two different prescriptions for pain medication before leaving the hospital. For the first few days, I took the pills several times a day. But I was able to wean myself to only one pill a day pretty quickly. And now (3 weeks from her birth), I typically don’t have to take any at all!
There are still some rules that I need to follow until I go to my 6 week follow-up appointment:
1. No working out (except easy walking).
2. No getting physical with my husband. (I think that’s a pretty standard rule after any delivery!)
3. Continue to take it easy.
Physically, I’ve been feeling really good. The incision area is still a little sore, but it’s something that I don’t even think about. My body is surprisingly bouncing back fairly well; however, my belly still feels softer than it ever has before. But I know that is completely normal and I’m not sweating it.
(That picture was taken when she was less than a week old … I haven’t had much time for make-up or hair recently!)
Emotionally, I’m honestly still not doing so hot. I tell you this because I want other people to know that if you’re experiencing emotional lows after delivery, you aren’t alone! I know that my body and my life have been through some drastic changes in the last few weeks, so it’s going to take some time to adjust. But in the meantime, I’m allowing myself to cry. A lot.
So that was my experience with a C-section. In a nutshell, I just have to say that it wasn’t NEARLY as bad as I had anticipated. Everyone makes C-sections sound so scary, but it was actually a fairly positive experience (well, as positive as major surgery can be!).
Question for ya …
If you’ve had children, what kind of delivery experience did you have?
Any questions for me, related to the delivery or after?