An Elective Caesarean section
With my second baby I planned a VBAC. I was under a consultant after having an emergency section the first time around. Everything was going as it should, baby was head down and I was just waiting for that first niggle. A week before due date I had some reduced movement. So I went in for monitoring, I had been having growth scans throughout pregnancy too. Because it was my second episode of reduced movement in the 3rd trimester I was referred for a scan. They estimated the baby to be quite big and advised that VBAC was not a good idea in this case and a planned section would be safer.
I had a couple of days to come to terms with it and use the skills I had been working on in class to calm myself down and think clearly. It’s not what I had been planning and I felt so disappointed. But if I weigh up my first birth of 2 days of forced contractions, the difficulty they had breaking my waters, being the most tired I’ve ever been and THEN having an emergency c section. It was a no brainer. (I then started getting contractions the night before my planned section… but that’s another story!)
I walked into theatre, I had a full face of make up and freshly washed hair, I had my own music playing, I got skin to skin in theatre and my daughter latched on whilst I was still on the table. It’s not what I envisioned when I initially thought about having babies and ‘giving birth’. But It was so unbelievably calm and – enjoyable seems like the wrong word…but it really was. I used my breathing techniques and zoned into my music whilst my baby was brought into the world.
I didn’t cry when my son was born, I think I was just too tired, too stunned and just relieved we were both ok. The minute I saw my daughter both my husband and I burst into tears. I think I was more in the moment and more in control and felt safe.
The recovery is tough I cannot lie about that, but I think it was easier second time as I was more at peace with what had happened and it wasn’t so much of a shock. I have also had an amazing experience with breastfeeding this time so I really don’t feel like having a c-section gets in the way of that at all and there were many more reasons I couldn’t feed successfully the first time.
The contractions I did experience gave me the sense that things would not have progressed quickly. And could have potentially ended in an emergency again. In going for the planned section I feel like I took control of the situation and was able to experience a calm and beautiful birth even though I didn’t give birth in the traditional way.
Joni was born weighing 8lbs 14oz.