Thursday, June 18, 2009

Anastasia's Birth Story and Seven Things You didn't Know About Having A C-section

I had my 39 week midwife appointment scheduled for Monday, June 8th. I was planning on calling Monday morning to reschedule since Chris ended up having to work and I was going to have to bring all three kids. However, the night before Anastasia was moving a lot less than she normally does so I was a little nervous. When I woke up on Monday and she wasn’t doing her normal acrobatic routine I decided I better just pack up and go to the appointment. I shot a quick email to Chris and let him know that I was heading in for the appointment because I was a little nervous about the fact that her movement had slowed.

We went to the appointment at 9:30 and and Barbara was my midwife that day (she happens to be the one I prefer so I was grateful this particular appointment was with her). After finding the baby’s heartbeat (on the normal position for a vertex baby) She felt my abdomen with her hands. When she said that she wasn’t sure whether she was feeling a head or a butt I instantly knew that Anastasia was breech. I had been overly worried about her position the whole pregnancy but at every appointment the midwife would assure me she was head down. Well, she sent me right away for an ultrasound and sure enough, the baby was totally frank breech. The ultrasound tech also discovered that my fluid was low at 5.5 when they are looking for a 10 (I’m not sure how they measure that exactly) I’m also not sure what caused the low fluid as I know that I wasn’t leaking fluid so I will be asking this at my post partum check-up!

Back into the exam room to see Barbara we went. She said “I know you don’t want to hear this but we have to do a C-section” The low fluid prevented them from trying and techniques to turn her and I would have preferred to go ahead and deliver her vaginally even breech but it is against hospital policy (UGH!!) so a caesarean was my only option. Had I already been in labor when I discovered it I’m sure I could just refuse to sign the consent for the C-section and delivered breech anyway – barring a court order that is (yes, that has happened before).

They wanted to perform a non-stress test to see how urgent the need for delivery was (Like if the baby looked good the section could wait until evening, if she didn’t it was straight to the hospital) While they were setting that up I called Chris at work and thankfully he was able to leave right away and showed up at the office minutes later. The NST looked good so the C-section was scheduled for 5:30 and I was to be at the hospital at 3pm. Just enough time to call the sitter (Thank you, Julie!!!) put Elissa down for a nap, back a bag and head over to the hospital.

Once we got there we were put in a room, I was hooked to an IV an pumped full of fluids, nurses came in and out and I answered all sorts of questions and signed some paperwork. I got to meet the doctor (Dr. Cassidy) whom I was glad was female seeing as she was going to be getting a pretty good look at me LOL! All the while I was nervous but not bad until they said it was time to walk to the OR. At this point I had to leave Chris behind until I was prepped for surgery.

I was walked into the OR and had my spinal put in and was laid on the operating table waiting to become numb. They smeared me with betadine and set up the drapes and Chris was allowed in. I think the scariest part was wondering if I was actually numb enough to not feel pain. It is really strange to be able to feel pressure and being poked and prodded but not having it hurt. Apparently the spinal worked because it wasn’t painful at all (definitely weird feeling though!). They began the operation and at 6:10 pm little Anastasia Grace entered the world! They showed her to me quickly and then took her to be cleaned and checked and wrapped in a blanket. They brought her back for some snuggles with mommy before her and daddy headed to the nursery.

My surgery was finished up and I was taken to the recovery room and Anastasia was brought in a little while later to nurse and cuddle before I was moved to my regular room. We are so blessed to have a healthy baby and successful surgery!

Now here are the things they don’t tell you about having a C-section

1. I was told the spinal lasts about 2 hours but I couldn’t feel my toes until about 5 hours after the surgery. (not that I’m complaining since when the feeling came back that is when the pain kicked in!)

2. A side effect of the spinal is itching when it wear off. I mean bad itching all over your body – even the face. It was almost worse than the pain. That didn’t go away for nearly 12 hours!

3. Even though the incision itself is very sore the area all around it stays numb. It is still numb a couple inches all around my incision and I’ve heard from other that it may stay like that for a long time!

4. The betadine they smear all over you abdomen and marker they use don’t wash off. I was bright yellow for a few days and now I just look dirty. They say it will wear off in a few weeks.

5. The operating room is FREEZING!!!

6. Somehow gas from your abdomen can travel to your shoulders while doing the surgery and ummm OUCH! I could feel that for a few days.

7. Laughing, Coughing, and even clearing your throat are very painful things to do even when you think you are feeling pretty good.

and I'm sure there is more but I'm getting tired and somebody small needs to eat...


Anonymous June 19, 2009 at 7:07 AM  

Thank you so much for sharing this story - it helps when I'm not able to be there with you. I did know about the gas that causes pain in the shoulders, but I didn't know about the itching - how awful. Praise the Lord for our healthy baby girl.

Davene June 19, 2009 at 3:29 PM  

Thanks for sharing more of the details. I had heard some of that stuff about C-sections, but not all of it. Now I'm hoping even more than before that I DON'T follow your example since I really don't want to end up with a C-section! :)

But of course, the most important thing is having a healthy baby and mama, and I thank God for that!

Jolanthe July 11, 2009 at 7:07 AM  

I choked on a salad and started coughing when I was still in the hospital and thought I was going to split my stitches! It was horrible!!

(stopped by via Davene)


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