Since, I am pretty sure the whole stork thing is a myth...I have to start coming to terms with the dreaded c-section birth. Because I have complained enough about not wanting a c-section and contemplated all the risks (blood loss, shock, infection, anesthesia complications, problems for Ashlyn with breathing...I could go on and on....), I have decided to try to think of the benefits of having a scheduled c-section to make myself feel better. Let's see if writing this list will give me a change of heart....
Warning: This list might get graphic.....words like "vagina" and "fecal incontinence" will be used!
- Obviously, the main benefit is that it will be the best possible birth for Ashlyn. We want to make sure she avoids any unnecessary trauma that could occur during labor and a vaginal delivery.
- If her head is really as big as the doctors expect....do I really want to push a bowling ball out of my "area"?! I tore pretty bad when I delivered Braeden, and his head was average sized. Plus, 10 cm dilated is not that much....check out a ruler, you'd be surprised! All I can say is OUCH! Furthermore, imagine how much stretching would have to be done to accommodate a large head....you'd have to do lots of kegels to get your vagina back to its natural size and shape (if that is even possible). I don't want to be one of those women who go to Dr. 90210 for vagina surgery!
- It will be nice having a date scheduled in my planner to work around. No guessing as to if my baby will be born on time or late....All I'll have to do is look at the calendar and know Ashlyn's birthday is X number of days away. I will have advanced notice as to when I should get the nesting done. I can plan a spa day a few days in advance...get a pedi, mani, wax, get my hair done, prenatal massage.....momma needs to be pampered before she turns back into a postpartum zombie! Having a date in mind does give you some sense of control....Although, I am sure once you are lying on the OR table that feeling of control goes right out the window!
- I was thinking to certain days that would be convenient to have the c-section. For example, 39 weeks is ideal....it would be Monday, June 1st. Since I am taking the full 12 weeks off for maternity leave that will give me the entire summer off (assuming I don't go out of work earlier than necessary). I also thought that 38 weeks would be good too....It would be Monday, May 25th (Memorial Day). That means most of my family would not need to take off of work. But I am not sure if they would schedule a section for a holiday....Then I thought, well the day after Memorial Day would be good too. We could go to family picnics on Monday as a last hooray before the big day. If they decide to take her out at 37 weeks (no earlier please!), that would be the day after Chris and my anniversary....not exactly ideal, but it would be a great gift nonetheless!
- Labor....I guess I won't miss it after all. Before the epidural, I was miserable. Contractions suck, and the pressure was unbearable. Seriously, all I could do was cry and sit on the toilet because it was the most (relatively) comfortable position I found.
- 8 weeks (as opposed to 6 weeks) short term disability pay!
- No need to worry about pelvic floor damage, which can cause urinary and fecal incontinence (yuck) and sexual problems. No bladder or vagina prolapse. No tearing or episiotomies to worry about. And no hemorrhoids that can be aggravated by pushing.
- A planned c-section is a much safer route then trying to deliver vaginally, only to end up with an emergency c-section. Let's try to make my delivery as emergency free as possible please!
- We will have to stay in the hospital 3-4 days. At first I thought this would be a negative, but then I recalled day 3 when I was home with Braeden. Chris decided it would be a good idea to leave his wife and newborn home while he went to get a haircut (although looking at the postpartum pics from the hospital...he did in fact desperately need a haircut!). Little did he know while he was at Supercuts hoping that he would get the hot hairdresser (yes, I can tell if he gets the hot one....he always is much more satisfied with the way his hair looks...), mommy was home in agony thinking she was going to die. In fact, my milk was coming in....I had no idea it would feel like I had the flu....I was shaking, had the chills, and was in unbearable pain. Thankfully, my mom was with me....Chris would have never lived that one down if he left me truly alone. By the time he came home, I was sitting in the reclining chair topless, boobs bigger than Dolly Parton's, tears streaming down my face, a bag of pees in my crouch pleading with Braeden to just latch on! We were quite a sight. At least if we are in the hospital, it will nice to have nurses and lactation consultants there to help me through the torture.
- More on the 3-4 days in the hospital. If Strong's rooms are anything like Highland's, the postpartum suites ALMOST feel like a hotel. Granted the sheets are scratchy and there is emergency equipment hiding in the hanging pictures and cabinets. I can bring a laptop, dvds, magazines, and be able to veg out when the baby is sleeping (assuming we get to room in, and she isn't still in the NICU). No need to worry about housework, making dinner, grocery shopping, etc, etc, etc for 3-4 days! That is the kind of vacations mommies like...but we could do without the whole surgery part....
- I won't have to deal with icing my vagina...kind of awkward when you have visitors coming in and out of your hospital room!
- I will admit it....It is a vain reason, but Ashlyn's head might be a little bigger than normal, but it will be perfectly round as opposed to the cone head babies who are delivered vaginally! She will also avoid the bruising and redness on the face that can occur with a vaginally birth (Braeden was pretty beat up when he was born!).
- Mommy might look a little prettier postpartum if she does not need to labor and push for hours...Well, I will probably be less sweaty and disheveled....but I might be more puffy from the IV fluids.
- I will gain perspective for my career as a nurse. When often get surgical patients in the ICU so I will be able to understand better their concerns and physical pain that is experienced postoperatively.
- The recovery will suck....but at least I will get the good drugs. Right? They don't just give you ibuprofen after a c-section....at least I hope not....I'm hoping for a PCA pump with something good like Dilaudid or Morphine for at least the first 24 hours!
- It will be interesting to see how Chris does in the operating room....I just hope he doesn't pass out. Still, it is sad that they will only allow 1 person in the OR. I wish my mom could be there too.....At least (I think) they will allow her and Chris go right to the nursery with Ashlyn.
So that is a pretty long list....Granted some of the benefits are stretches, I am starting to come to grips with the inevitable. At least, with it being scheduled, I can prepare myself adequately.