C-Section Fears

February 21, 2018

If you saw my post the other week about my 32 week scan, then you’ll know that I’ve got a C-section booked in to deliver this baby at 39 weeks. To say I’m not thrilled about this, is an understatement. Please don’t tell me that I can still opt for a vaginal breech delivery, as I believe that a caesarean is the safest way to deliver a breech baby. This is exactly why I had M via caesarean section. However, just because I’ve had one C-section, it doesn’t mean I haven’t got a whole new range of worries about having one this time. So, I thought I’d write about them in the spirit of my blog as my haven for chronic over-thinking.

My worries around having a second c-section

Will a C-section make it harder for me to breastfeed?

When I had M, I struggled to get breastfeeding right and she lost weight. I put this down to spending longer than I should have in recovery after the caesarean without skin to skin, and lots of well-meaning midwives in hospital telling me that M’s latch was fine, and being discharged too early only to be told by my community midwife later in the week that I was doing it all wrong.

Other women have successfully breastfed after a caesarean, but for me, it felt impossible. I think I had convinced myself that having a VBAC would remedy this problem. I imagined that wonderful, baby-crawling-out-of-my-vagina-and-up-my-body-to-the-breast moment that they show you in videos at NCT classes.

It’s a real worry that having a caesarean will mean that I’ll struggle to breastfeed again. I desperately want to be able to give this baby the same start that M had, but I know I won’t be able to exclusively express for the best part of eight months again, not with a newborn and a toddler to look after!

Will I feel as much pain as I did last time?

I remember being utterly miserable after we were discharged from hospital when M was born. It was terrible. I think this is mainly because I ended up only taking paracetamol as pain relief. My Polycystic Kidney Disease means that I’m unable to take anti-inflammatories, and while I was given oromorph to take, this made me feel worse than I did when not taking it. I’ve heard that arnica tablets are supposed to be really good for healing after C-section. I’m going to find out whether it’s safe for me to take those, and hopefully that will speed up recovery for me a bit.

I’m trying to put it all in perspective. I’ve reminded myself that I was feeling much better and even driving after four weeks last time. I’m really hoping to be able to enjoy the first weeks of this baby’s life, rather than simply surviving it.

How will M feel about me not being able to lift her for weeks?

This worries me as at 20 months, M is still little and comes to me a lot for reassurance. We’ve managed to teach her to climb up and down the stairs over the past few weeks. That will help, but she still asks to be picked up by me all the time. I think the mummy guilt that you won’t be able to give your first child as much attention as you did before is bad enough. I’m gutted that I’ll have to add, “no, Mummy can’t pick you up,” to my repertoire for weeks after the baby arrives.

So there you have it. Those are my three main worries. Yes, I’m sad that I won’t get to experience a natural birth. I’m able to be fairly pragmatic about that (although I’m sure I’ll shed some tears over it at some point!); it’s more the aftermath of caesarean that’s bothering me this time. There is still a chance that this baby will turn and I’ll be able to have a natural birth. I’ll hold onto that but after M staying put for so long, I’m not holding out much hope!

My concerns around having a second caesarean section

4 responses to “C-Section Fears”

  1. I am utterly useless here because the only answer I have is “I don’t know”. I remember the horrendous guilt I felt at not being able to play with Toby or do stuff when I was pregnant with Martha because of the PGP, so I can relate to your third point and I guess just try to remember that it’s not forever, and M won’t remember it xx

    • Jules says:

      Aw I know she won’t remember, but I don’t want her to be sad! I think it will be tough for her if I have a c-section and am in hospital for a few days. So difficult because I know I’ll want to be at home with her, but at the same time, I want to spend as long as I can in hospital healing and getting that early support with feeding the new baby. At least we only live a five minute drive from the hospital, so it should be fairly easy for her to visit lots xx

  2. I won’t lie, I hated the healing after my c-section with Pais and I dreaded the thought of it happening with Didge. However…. The surgery was all very calm, Pais was chilled and latched on straight away. Between her and Dexter, she was my latcher/breastfeeder. By the time the second baby comes along, I think we already know to a degree that some things will go the way we want and some things won’t and that makes us more accepting of the things that don’t go to plan.
    Dexter was 2 and a half when Pais was born so still wanted lifting and stuff too. It was hard but when I couldn’t lift him, I told him to sit with me and Pais and we had extra cuddles that way and he held her a lot (with my help) so their bond was good.
    I’m sure you’ll do so well, M will love her sister and it all goes so fast. Just keep reminding yourself that the pain will pass. You’re gunna rock it!

    • Jules says:

      Yes, my mantra first time around was ‘this is temporary’ so I’ll keep it for this time! Also, my midwife sent me to the hospital to ask for some of those little syringes to collect colostrum in now and freeze, just in case I have the same initial latching problems that I did with M. Hopefully if I can get some of those stored up, I’ll feel a little more relaxed about combatting any potential weight loss this baby may have.

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