Are you expecting your first child? Here’s a recap on how my first labor experience and c-section recovery along with tips on how I overcame my postpartum recovery. Discover what items you’ll need to add to your recovery kit.
This post is part of the Giving Birth Series. It contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase using any of the links below, then I will receive a percentage from the sale.
The months leading up to giving birth are one of the scariest moments when you’re expecting for the first time. I remember planning a birth that had nothing to do with a Caesarean birth or an epidural.
Things quickly changed after I was rushed to the hospital at 38 weeks with our first child.
I had a scheduled ultrasound and check-up with my doctor the day I was told to head to the hospital. My OB/GYN had requested to keep an eye on the amniotic fluid since was odd.
One week it was a bit low, the following normal, and the other test showed it was steady.
On that day I would get the news that my fluid was at 2.8. I was off to my doctor’s office and Googled what this meant in the car ride.
I couldn’t find anything and was a bit frustrated.
My husband told me not to worry and that we’d talk to the doctor about it and he’ll explain everything. We also made the decision to stop by the house and pick up our hospital bag and leave Rocky, our Siberian husky, with some water and dinner in case I’d go into labor.
Related: Introducing Your Dog To A Newborn
18 Hours Of Labor And A C-Section
I went to my OB/GYN’s office and met with my doctor. One of the front desk receptionists came in and said, “We got the results from the ultrasound. We made a note.”
The doctor looked at me and said. “This could be it.”
I had two editorial meetings at the office that day and a call with a company CEO for a feature I was working on.
I wasn’t prepared, but fortunately, it was a Thursday and my husband was off from work.
The doctor checked me and said I was 3 centimeters dilated and that I was going to the “white place” as he called it.
I was terrified.
I didn’t want to leave work unfinished nor did I feel prepared to go into labor. Then again, I didn’t think I was prepared to get pregnant either so I calmed my nerves by thinking of this.
I remember calling a colleague almost in tears because I was so scared of what was to come.
My husband held my hand to reassure me everything was going to be okay. We arrived at the hospital and my husband dropped me off to look for parking.
I walked through the sliding doors, went to the admitting floor, and signed myself in. I waited about 30-45 mins for them to prepare the room. I was excited, nervous, and scared — all at once.
I did my best to cope with the contractions (which in all honesty weren’t that bad). It just felt like your stomach was tightening up for a few seconds.
I was given Pitocin to help make the contractions stronger so that I’d go into labor. I spent almost the entire day on that hospital bed — 18 hours to be exact.
My doctor checked me again.
He said I only reached 6 centimeters and that I needed an emergency c-section because my pelvis was too small to push him out.
Disappointed and frustrated, I prepared myself. My husband went with me and held my hand once again.
I was given an epidural — also known as the worst pinch I had ever felt in my life. Fortunately, the anesthesia worked instantly.
I felt movements as they prepared me for the operation. It was very uncomfortable.
My husband continued to hold my hand throughout the entire procedure, reminding me that everything will be fine — even after he watched them pull out my organs and place them to the side.
How I Dealt With My C-Section Recovery
The doctor showed me the little guy over the drape. I was too drugged up to pay attention.
My husband was a bit choked up when he said the words, “Baby, he’s beautiful.” I wanted to react but I couldn’t. What I needed was rest.
Before going into the operating room, I was asked if I’d be breastfeeding or using formula. Without hesitation, I said I’d be breastfeeding. I wasn’t aware that I’d be feeding him right after birth.
I was rolled into the recovery room and the nurse and my husband helped me up. Before she stepped out she said she would bring the baby for me to feed.
Exhausted and moody, I regretted the conversation of breastfeeding prior to surgery.
When he was placed into my arms I snapped out of those emotions. I was no longer tired, I just wanted him with me forever.
Our newborn latched on to my nipple and I knew we would forever have a special bond.
Walking was tough the first couple of tries, but once I applied the hospital girdle I received for my surgery, it was a blessing to move around.
Using the abdominal binder helped lift my belly and remove the pressure from the wound. If you get a chance to snag one of these on Amazon, then I recommend it. I will say that when I mentioned getting this from the hospital, many other moms said they never got one.
Going to the bathroom wasn’t easy the first couple of times after having surgery. Two things that helped me were lower back massages and drinking plenty of water.
C-Section Recovery Kit For Moms
Recovering from a c-section sounds tough. Getting up from your bed alone isn’t easy for new moms who’ve had this surgery.
I remember the pain I felt every time I laughed or would sneeze. It was as if someone was stabbing my insides.
Thinking back to the experience, I was glad I had asked my OB/GYN about the essential items I would need during my recovery Below is a list of 4 things you’ll need after a c-section:
These plant-based sanitary pads help minimizes discomfort by reducing inflammation. It has aloe vera and mint to help with soreness and pain.
Having scar cream handy will help reduce the appearance of your incision. It also helps with the healing process as well.
Comfort is everything after having a c-section. You want to make sure you’ve got handy are high-waisted underwear that will help keep your sanitary pad in place. This postpartum underwear also has tummy control and is perfect for leaving the hospital.
4. Pain killers are good to have handy as well.
Although I didn’t use pain killers much after we left the hospital, I will admit that many other moms who’ve had this surgery said they prefer using pain killers to help cope with recovering.
Do you know anyone who has experienced c-section recovery?
If you enjoyed this post, head over to other parts of this series. Below are other installments of the Giving Birth Series:
First Trimester Tips You Need To Know
Second Trimester Tips For First-Time Moms
Third Trimester Tips: What You Need To Know Before Going Into Labor
5 Baby Registry Items You Won’t Need And Those You Don’t Think Of Adding
Why Choose Multifunctional Baby Products