Once you’re in the land of parenting it’s easy to forget how freaking scary being pregnant can be because of all of the unknown. My grandmother once told me that the most terrifying moment of pregnancy is when you realize, “That little bugger’s gotta come out somehow.” For a month before my scheduled Cesarean birth I would sit up in the middle of the night and madly research everything there was to know about C-sections.
I had never been in the hospital over night before, let alone scheduled for (gulp) surgery. I madly researched mortality rates of women undertaking this major surgery and emailed friends and Facebook acquaintances about their C-section experiences, trying to convince myself that everything was going to be okay. What I found was a range of experiences, mostly positive, but those aren’t the ones I was reading about in the middle of the night. In the final weeks of pregnancy a handful of friends unknowingly mentioned news stories surrounding an outbreak of c-difficile at local hospitals sending me into another nightly tailspin.
This is Why I Chose to Have a Planned C-Section:
There was no love lost for me in opting out of the home birth scenario even though I understand the appeal – especially after the baby arrives and you can be at home together rather than under strict hospital regulation. I never day-dreamed of a granola filled natural birth experience in my living room. A few years ago a family member told me that they had to lock up their cats during their home birth so they wouldn’t attack them during labour. Anything that’s going to turn my house into an episode of Animal Kingdom isn’t going to sell me on the beauty of the experience.
I have never felt like a failure for not being able to experience labour. My woman warrior experience was carrying two babies to full term on a 5 foot 1 frame. Given the high risk of my pregnancy, complete with my son being breech, most midwives wouldn’t touch us with a ten foot pole. So, my husband and I evaluated our options, through extensive discussions with our doctor and the instructor of the online prenatal class we took.
At about 32 weeks into my pregnancy we booked the C-section. Based on the positioning of my fraternal twins, odds were at around one in three that if I went into natural labour with Molly that I’d have to get an emergency C-section anyway. Even if I didn’t have a C-section they may have to use the vacuum or forceps for the removal of my son (twin B). The spinal freezing was also going to be mandatory just in case of the need for emergency surgery. There was also a chance that my boy could lose oxygen and have some brain damage in the time between my daughter’s birth and his own. We decided that #1 we didn’t want to chance any brain damage, #2 I didn’t like the idea of having to recover from labour and giving birth AND surgery while taking care of newborn twins. Another bonus of the C-section, provided that I didn’t go into labour early, was that I was ensured delivery with the doctor who had taken care of us through my entire pregnancy. So we booked the surgery and sent the eviction notice to the minions at 38 weeks and didn’t look back.
*This is an excerpt from a post on my blog. Read the entire post here
SaraBeth is a Toronto based writer. Her blog Multiple Momstrosity was named one on Toronto Mom Now’s 2012 Top 30 Mom Blogs. She is a two-time veteran of the Three Day Novel Writing Contest. She lives in The Junction with her husband and fraternal toddler twins (Molly & Jack).