“C Section? It’s not all doom and gloom” – A guest post from Kate (Family Fever)

My first guest post comes from Kate of Family Fever. Kate has recently had her third child and her third C-section – between us we are pretty experienced in giving birth via “the sunroof option” (or rather more graphically described to me by one Doctor as “the slash and grab” which I have to say did make me giggle).  As I wrote in my guest post for Gemma recently I’ve actually found the build up to this Section considerably more nerve wracking as I know what to expect and have had time to think about what is going to happen -but reading Kate’s post has reminded me that really it’s not the end of the world – it’s not as scary as it sounds and in reality there’s a gorgeous little bundle at the end of it which makes it OK! I hope if you’ve got a section coming up that her words of wisdom provide some comfort! 

Csection? It’s not
all doom and gloom

My first child was born by emergency section. I was under
General Anaesthetic and remember nothing. So when I fell pregnant with my
second, and was advised to have an elective C-section, I was terrified about
what lay ahead. I foolishly Googled, and scared myself silly with horror
stories about epidurals going wrong and babies being whisked away from you.
I am not suggesting that things never go wrong – I know
first hand that they do – but we shouldn’t be so terrified about caesareans.
They are carefully managed medical procedures with a huge amount of staff for
support. So lets bust those C-section myths:

1. Epdiurals are awful – they really hurt and you might be paralysed.
I’ve had 2 spinal anaesthetics and I’m still walking.  The epidural was my biggest fear with my elective section.  I was terrified about having a needle in my back.  But in fact – it’s really nothing.  You are asked to sit on the edge of the bed and bend over a pillow.  A local anesthetic is given first – a slight sting, but really nothing to panic about.  Then the spinal needle is inserted.  You honestly don’t feel this.  There is just the sensation of someone pushing on your back.  The strangest bit of all is when the anaesthic hits your legs.  All of a sudden you have two dead weights where your legs should be, and absolutely no control over them!

2. The bit where the baby is pulled out hurts. 
Of course is doesn’t.  You are numb from the chest down.  Again, it’s an odd sensation – you can feel that something is happening, but there is no pain – just someone pulling and pushing.  Before you really realise what is happening, the surgeon is holding a screaming, writing bundle up to show you. 

3. You can’t hold your baby after a C-section.
Yes. You can. C-section babies sometimes need a bit of a rub down after birth to stimulate breathing as their lungs have not been ‘squeezed’ in the way they would have during a nautral delivery.  But providing you and baby are well, you can hold them against your chest, you can do skin-to-skin, you can ever put them to the breast while you are being stitched up.  

4. Breastfeeding after a C-section is harder.
Another myth that isn’t true.  For some breastfeeding is easy, for others it is harder.  That has nothing to do with the mode of delivery, it all just comes down to practice.  Invest in a nursing pillow before the birth – they allow you to hold your baby more comfortably away from your scar, and puts baby in a better position for latching on. 

5. It takes months to recover, you can’t do anything. 
Rubbish.  Obviously you have had major abdominal surgery, and I’m not suggesting you will be running a marathon any time soon, but it’s not as bad as the scare stories would have you believe.  My third baby was born at 1.19am on a Saturday morning.  By 4pm I was walking down to the special care unit to see him.  We left hospital 48 hours after he was born.  By the Tuesday morning, I was doing the school run.  You do have to take it slowly and listen to your body, but please don’t think that you won’t even be able to sneeze without rupturing your wound – that’s not the case. 

So in conclusion, if a C-section is the way your baby will be making his or her appearance into this world, then please don’t panic.  Birth is hard work, whether it is natural or assisted.  But you will be OK.  You will recover.  And you will have your new baby – nothing else really matters does it? 

If you want to read more from Kate you’ll find her in the following places: 
Twitter: @FamilyFever


  1. November 7, 2013 / 10:32 am

    Great post. I had an emergency c section first time and opted for a section second time round. I knew what to expect. I knew that having a poo wouldn't rupture my wound! I knew it would be painful for 24 hours but then it gets massively better. I knew I had to get myself up and going and like you, I was home quickly. I had my son at 3.23pm on the Tuesday and was ready to leave hospital by 9am on the Thursday, but had to wait the 48 hrs so didn't leave till 3.23pm! giving birth isn't easy, which ever way, but you are right to say not to be too worried or scared. you are being well looked after x x

  2. November 7, 2013 / 8:20 pm

    Great post! I've had two c-sections & I'm a wimp when it comes to pain….lol I got through them x

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