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My fears of choosing a cesarean section

Angela’s email continued: Read the first part here

“In general, a C-section seems to me a weird way of giving birth. A woman is about to experience one of the strongest transitions in her life and we add to this, a major abdominal surgery, which persé is a difficult operation to go through. After such an operation you need a good recovery time and a crying, hungry baby with the hormonal shifts you go through, make it really hard to recover.

2014-c-section-doula

My fears of choosing a C-section

  • Not being in control and being completely dependent despite being a healthy human being. Passively watching other people intervening in something that is regarding me so much (my baby) and being the least active person in the room, drives me crazy. I am not having a heart attack and incapable of recovery myself, I am giving birth to my own child and I should be able to do that myself. The problem of this fear is that this bad feeling wouldn’t last only for the time of the surgery. A C-section implies I cannot be the main caregiver for many days. My child will be dependent on me while I will be completely dependent on my poor husband (at the least, if not on other helpers too)
  • I don’t know how painful it is to give birth naturally but I know how much pain you can feel with a C-section (without complications) It was very, very, very painful. A pain I was not happy about, and pain I really did not want to feel. I can imagine that when women ask for a C-section, they deal better with this pain. I didn’t. I hated my scar and the shape of my belly that for several months was blowing around this painful and ugly line. It would hurt every time I would breastfeed, I would sneeze, I would cough, I would go to bed and wake up. Every time I would remember what happened and this made me feel miserable. I could not exercise and I had to be careful and I did not quite understand why it happened in the first place and how I got here anyway. Why was this C-section needed? I hadn’t even tried to give birth.
  • C-section risks. Don’t need to list them, but the risks for both the mother and the baby are unpleasant. I would like to avoid them, but risks are a probabilistic matter, same reasoning made with the uterine rupture applies.
  • My physical and physiological recovery was really hard. I have mentioned that before. The part I suffered the most was that my heavy recovery did not allow me to enjoy my baby. For me breastfeeding was a torture and I kept doing it only because I believed it was right, but it was never pleasant. I feared the cry of my baby because that meant he was hungry. I was so mentally exhausted from what I had been through that I felt guilty, inadequate, and incapable to enjoy the moments with my baby that I had waited for so long. My baby was healthy, why was I not happy then? I would avoid a major surgery when having to take care of a newborn (and of a toddler too!). It took me almost 2 months to feel physically okay. It took much more to feel mentally okay. I started to feel better when I stopped breastfeeding, when my baby was approximately 5 months. I still have troubles accepting what happened. Am I okay now? I am not sure.

GENERAL REMARKS

I guess giving birth is never easy and becoming a mother is even harder. However, fear of dying, experiencing a surgery, being under the effect of a drug (morphine is amazing) and becoming a mother, all first time experiences and all during the same day can be quite challenging.

I feel angry because I am having a second child without the benefits of it. I don’t know how it feels to enter into labor and I don’t know how I would cope with it. Knowing that women experience shorter labor and quicker delivery with a second child is also disappointing. This is my second child and I don’t have a clue about how to give birth, just like I was a first time mother.

Here is a link to a helpful site with information if you are trying to decide on having a vaginal birth or not. http://vbacfacts.com/

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