Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A baby is born...

I have been somewhat reluctant to post about Libby's birth. To be honest, it was not at all what I had expected. But I think I am ready to share our experience....

Two weeks before Libby's arrival, you may remember this saga. Well, I didn't get a whole lot of information about a caesarean birth from the hospital, infact I really felt like a number in the system. Nobody explained much to me at all. So I set to work asking friends who had been through it before what I should expect. They all said I would feel the pushing & pulling, but no pain. They said it would all be over pretty quickly & that I would get a cuddle very soon after she/he was born.
I told myself it I would be fine, because so many others had gone before me.... The midwife warned me though, that I mightt feel cheated afterwards... I doubted her....
Well at 3:10pm they wheeled me off to surgery. I was feeling pretty nervous.
When we got there they asked Dan to wait outside until after they had put my spinal block in, then they would fetch him so he could be there with me for the birth. The wait was long. The longer I waited alone, the more nervous I became. Finally at 4:00pm the took me through to the operating room to get the big needle in my back. It was particulary scary getting this part done, as it went bad for a friend of mine who ended up with severe migraines for several weeks after her surgery. Once the spinal block was in, it all happened very quickly... They layed me down, the screen went up, the BP monitors got strapped on etc etc.... Dan still wasn't in there with me, so I asked them to get him. By this stage I was starting to panic a little. I calmed down slightly once he arrived, but not much. Between Dan & the anaethetist, they had there work cut out keeping me calm. It all seemed so unnatural.
My friends were right about all the pulling & pushing. I could feel everything! No pain, but feeling someones hands feeling around inside my body was horrid!! A feeling I hope to never have to experience again! After a little while I felt short of breath & I knew the baby's arrival was close. I remembered my friend explaining that feeling to me. Then before I knew it I heard good hearty crying!! The best sound in the world..... I aksed if it was a girl or a boy... they showed me... I couldn't see as I had no glasses on. Then they told me "Its a girl!!".... WHAT? I told them to check again! I was in absolute shock! I was so sure that we were having a boy... but what a delight! Another little girl. She was born at 4:50pm.
They quickly whisked her off to do whatever it is they needed to do, then they brought her over to meet me. I couldn't hold her, my arms were strapped down with drips & BP machines, but I got to kiss her.... She was so beautiful...
Then they took her away again to get weighed etc. They assured me that Dan & Libby would be waiting in recovery for me where I could have some skin to skin time & breast feed. I was looking forward to being out of that operating theatre. So maybe 20-30 mins later after they finished stitching me together I was taken to recovery. Dan & Libby were no where in sight. I started crying. The nurse told me they were short staffed & they had to go straight to the ward.
My stay in recovery seemed like an eternity. Well it was about 1/2 hour or so I think. I was finally taken back to the ward where I got to meet my baby properly, over an hour after she was taken away from me. I wasn't going to let anyone take her off me again!! She stayed in my bed for the rest of the night.
So did I feel cheated in the end? You bet I did!! Not because I couldn't birth naturally. I was ok with that part. But cheated that I wasn't prepared properly for what to expect. Cheated that I didn't get to cuddle her straight away. Cheated that no one asked me what I wanted. Cheated that Libby got hurt during the delivery even though the whole reason I chose the caesar was for her safety (the surgeon nicked her back with the scalpel).
So after delivering two babies naturally & one via c-section. I can quite confidently say natural delivery wins hands down.
I am so glad that my little girl arrived [relitively] safely. I wouldn't change my decison about having the c-section. However, I do wish it had been a positive experience that I could remember with fondness. I am sure the horrror of it all will fade away eventually, just like the horror of natural delivery does.
I must say though that leaving the sex of the baby a surprise was TOTALLY worth it! Such a delightful surprise!
Here is a photo of me meeting Libby for the first time....

If you made it this far, thanks for reading! Libby is such a delight to have in our family......

8 comments:

Givinya De Elba said...

Oh my dear. Thanks for this post. I want to give you a great big hug. As the weeks go by, there is something that I feel more and more cheated about, and a letter that came today only made me feel worse. Maybe I will post about it...?

Hippomanic Jen said...

I hope your disappointment fades as you spend more time with your little girl. I think you needed to put a warning on this one, though - non-mothers beware - Ick!!!

But seriously, it was good to hear your story.

G3 said...

I think you're allowed to feel cheated while also feeling grateful to have a healthy baby. The two aren't mutually exclusive. For a long time after the birth of my (now) two-year-old, I thought that it would be wrong to feel dudded by aspects of his birth, given that I was so lucky to have him at all. But it's something that has to be processed. In my case it was being bullied into pain relief that I didn't ask for or need and not being told how quickly my labour was progressing. Thanks for sharing your story. I really enjoyed reading it (and relating to bits of it). And congratulations on your beautiful baby girl!

Crazy Sister said...

Isn't it funny how no two caesarians are alike? Nobody could prepare you for it, because there are dozens of different ways it could go. You're at the mercy of everything, from your body's reactions to the drugs, to the number of staff available. It's hard to have absolutely no control. At least with naturals, you're doing the work!

I hear you. Dozens of us know just what you're talking about. And you're doing great! Bitch about the experience, and be glad to have your baby! You did everything right.

le @ thirdontheright said...

congratulations !! well done mamma ! you are right - c sections, elective or otherwise are no walk in the park - both mine went off track in different ways and were horrid.

I feel it is strange they asked dadda to leave you while you got your ephi - MIC stayed thru the whole thing ... that seemed to set the tone for all to come.

I have friends who did the vaginal thing and felt cheated too for other reasons so I conclude that birthing - how ever you choose to do it - is such a powerfully charged experieince that somehow there will always be pluses and minuses on the day.

My love and strength to you for the coming months of no decent sleep - hugs le xox

sewfunbymonique said...

Ack! I had a c-section with my first so I didn't know what was normal. No one told me what to expect, so I just went along with it all. I think I was ignorant to everything and just came out thinking I hope I get to experience a regular birth- and God blessed me with just that with my daughter. Then it was like ooooh, thats what its like! Everything was easier from the start with the 2nd! Hope you recover quickly!!

Dee from Downunder said...

congrats on Libby arriving safely, both my girls were natural deliveries, but both were taken away for special care virtually immediattly, so I understand the cheated feeling in that sense, nothing like bringing you back down to earth with a baby gone and stangers stiching you up or left to your own devices and thoughts till they come get you. I still get annoyed over missing out on the first hour or so of my babies lives.

Ann said...

When we had our baby, we also chose not to know the sex. The funny thing is, when we went to the hospital to deliver, the doctor asked "are you having a boy or a girl?" You should have seen her face light up when we told her we didn't know! She said "you mean I actually get to tell you 'It's a -----?!!' I've never gotten to do that! How fun!" I thought that was really sweet.