Birth Stories: Emergency C-Section Vs. Planned C-Section

Written By: Naomi Legault

Jax: 4 years old

When I found out I was going to have my first baby, Jax, I started on a planning frenzy. I had to find out the gender as soon as I could to plan out the nursery, choose my stroller colour, buy clothes and more! For all the research I did, the one plan I didn’t think about as much was the birth plan. I had no idea what to expect, so my plan was to just go to the hospital and have a baby when it was time. I did have a lot of unanswered questions: What does a contraction feel like? Will my water break? Where will I be when it happens?

I’ll never forget being wheeled over to see Jax, my heart was exploding.

I was about 10 days late. It was torture for me because I hate the unknown; obviously problematic when having a baby. Turned out that I had to have a membrane sweep to move things along, a couple of days later I started having contractions. I never knew what they would feel like but once they came, oh boy! It was super early in the morning, I started timing them, showered, and did some minimal make up (in extreme pain). I don’t even know how I did it because when I was trying to get dressed it felt impossible. My mother-in-law was visiting at the time, and said “you need to go NOW”.

When we got to the hospital, I finally had some relief. I can’t say enough good things about the hospital that I was at but I had unfortunate luck with my first nurse. I was in so much pain and she basically told me that I wasn’t going to get any sympathy from her since she had four kids. Luckily I got an epidural and much better nurses. Makes all the difference!

Finally Jax in my arms.

Once the epidural kicked in, I just waited for things to progress. After 8 hours of labour we needed to have an emergency C-section. For starters, dilation wasn’t progressing and then actually began to reverse. I also had a very high maternal fever and the baby had pooped inside. So at this point, the doctor said we need to get this baby out now or it’s dangerous for mom and baby.

It all went so fast and before I knew it Jax was born! It was a bit scary for me because, again, I didn’t know what to expect. He came out looking blue which is apparently very normal but we were a bit worried. They needed to work on him a bit with his breathing and monitored him closely. When I finally got wheeled over in the bed to see him he turned his little head as soon as he heard my voice. My husband and I couldn’t believe it.

And just like that, I was a mom.

Leaving the hospital with Jax.

Hudson: 2 years old

When I found out I was pregnant with Hudson, I immediately knew that I was NOT up for a VBAC (vaginal birth after caesarean). There was no way I was going to spend 8 hours in labour only to find out that I needed another emergency C-section. Having it planned was an odd feeling but I did enjoy knowing when he was coming and likely no surprises. The other great part was… no contractions! How could I turn that down? Other than my miscarriage, I had never experienced such horrific pain!

Welcome to the world, Hudson.

About a week before I was scheduled to deliver, I started having extreme high blood pressure and was in and out of the hospital that whole week on bed rest. I really wished at that point that they had done the C-section early but no such luck. That said, it may have been any doctor on call and I wanted to wait for mine. I felt like I knew what to expect with the second C-section, but it was a little bit longer since it wasn’t a rushed emergency. Certainly not a pleasant experience overall but nor is pushing (I bet).

We women are tough cookies, aren’t we?

Time to go home, Hudson

Recovery wasn’t exactly a walk in the park either, especially the second time around, when I also had a toddler in tow. Luckily both times my husband had two weeks off and I had lots of family to help me.

There you have it, blessed with two beautiful, healthy boys, Jax and Hudson, 4 and 2 years old. I can’t imagine my life without them!

Two best buds settling in at home.

Mom of Fame – Ale: Mom, Step-Mom, Infertility Survivor

Ale is another amazing mom-blogger that we were lucky enough to “meet” through the wonders of the internet. She is a new mom, a step-mom and an infertility survivor. After having her son, she feels like she forgot about what she used to love to do for herself. In order to get those feelings back she started her blog, HappinessYpunto!.

Ale talks about the important advice she received from her mom, what being a step-mom taught her, and how she teaches her boys all about choices and consequences. Please help us welcome her into our Mom of Fame and check out her blog at the link above!

Please tell us a little about you and your family.

Hi, my name is Ale and I’m a wife, a new mom and a step-mom, and an infertility survivor. We live in Florida with our two Boston Terriers. We are an outgoing family, always looking for the next adventure to go to. You can always find us out on the boat, snorkeling, deep fishing, or just relaxing at the beach.

I am a bilingual blogger at HappinessYpunto! A happiness blog helping women think more positive. A place where I share my experiences and life hacks I discover along the way, so moms like you can spend more time where it matters and achieve more #momwins.

What is the best piece of advice you were given about motherhood? Did you take it?

Out of all the solicited and unsolicited advise I received, I think the one that stuck was to “listen to your gut”. It has been my compass and my guide when other advise received has conflicted with one another. Your gut/your heart always knows best.

Would you give that piece of advcie to someone else?

Absolutely! My advise to new moms has been “you will receive tons of advise, too much even. Don’t let the hormones take over and tell people off – just nod. Turn around and listen to your gut. Then do what your gut tells you”.

How is motherhood different that you imagined it would be?

Motherhood has been a lot harder. Your brain is constantly on and there is little room to pause and just relax.

What are your three strengths when it comes to motherhood?

I think by being a step-mother first I learned a lot of tricks and ways to manage situations, so when my baby came along he was kind of like a second child in some ways that I was able to be more relaxed and flexible and understanding as I adjusted to this new role.

Describe a time when you were completely overwhelmed as a mother.

I think the first few months were definitely very overwhelming. This tiny human needed me and depended on me and it was a lot of responsibility when I had no idea what I was doing. I had my step-son since he was two years old, so this baby stage was completely unexplored territory.

Is there anything you feel you have lost about yourself since becoming a mother? What have you gained?

I have but I can’t really put my finger in it. I am so busy in mommyhood that I forgot what I liked and what I did before baby came along. I have slowly tried to make room for those things that sparked joy in my life such as creating art and blogging.

What do you want your child(ren) to learn from you?

I always tell my son that life is about choices and consequences to those choices. Your state of mind is a choice, what you choose to focus your energy is a choice, you can choose to focus on the negative or you can choose to focus on the good stuff life has offered you. I think if I can get them to understand that, they will be happier in life.

Mom of Fame – Christine

Christine is another mom blogger that we recently “met”. Her blog is called The Growing Creatives and it’s a place where you can find crafts, pretend play ideas, and other creative parenting hacks. She told us, “I think it’s really important to be intentional in how we play with our kids to let them freely express their creativity and grow their imaginations. I wanted to add a little corner to the internet where parents could be inspired to find silly and unique ways to interact with their children.”

In her interview she talks about how it’s important to be present, why she tries not to micromanage her kiddos, and how being a mom is “mentally exhausting” (right!?). Please help us welcome her into our Mom of Fame and check out her blog at the link above if you are looking for fun things to do with your kiddos!

Please tell us a little about you and your family.

My husband and I met in 8th grade, dated for a couple years in high school, and eventually got back together after 4.5 years apart. Now we live in a very rural town with our 2 kiddos. My 3 year old, Adeline, is super sassy and thinks she knows it all, but her confidence is amazing and the way she loves loving on her little brother melts my heart. My son, Jaxson, is the silliest and most curious 9 month old ever. He can get super focused on one thing which is pretty cool but also drives me crazy when he’s trying to get into something he’s not supposed to!

What is the best piece of advice you were given about motherhood? Did you take it?

When I was pregnant with Adi, my MIL told me not to listen to anyone but myself. I really appreciated that because you get so much advice thrown at you and it can be overwhelming. It was reassuring to hear from someone I trust that my own intuition will tell me what’s right for my children. I do look to others for guidance a lot, but I’m secure in knowing my final decision will be what’s right for my kids because no one knows them as well as I do or has their best interest in mind as intensely as I do.

Would you give that piece of advice to someone else?

Absolutely. I think it’s the only advice that can be used for anyone. Anything else is subject to that particular mom and baby. But generally speaking, a mother who is involved in her kid’s life and trusts her intuition will always make her decisions out of love.

How is motherhood different than you imagined it would be?

It’s more mentally exhausting! Some days I can’t even think of anything I accomplished and yet I’m still tired. Constantly putting your children before yourself, making sure they’re ok, worrying about their future… it’s a lot more mental weight than I expected. 

 What are your three strengths when it comes to motherhood?

Hmm. I am pretty good at making sure my kids are creatively stimulated throughout the day with art, pretend play, building stuff, etc. Doing activities that make them think or use their imagination is really important to me, so I make it a priority to be a part of every day.

I try to be present with them for a good portion of the day and not distracted by my phone or housework. It’s hard when it feels like so many other things are fighting for my attention. But I’ve realized not only does my daughter behave better when she’s spent a decent amount of quality time with me, but I also have more time to focus on other stuff! If I give her 15 minutes of undivided attention, she’ll willingly play on her own for a little bit. So much better than trying to do everything all at once!

Lastly, I consider it a strength that I don’t hover and micromanage my kids. It’s so tempting to show them the “right way” to do something, or hover over them to prevent any bumps or scrapes. I still make sure they’re safe, but try to give them space within the security of knowing I’m right there while they try figuring stuff out on their own.

Describe a time you were completely overwhelmed as a mother.

When I was pregnant with Jax. I am apparently one of those people who doesn’t like to be touched at all during pregnancy. At the time, my daughter was still nursing a lot during the night. Between the pain and just needing to not be touched so much, I really struggled when she wanted to nurse constantly. One night I remember feeling like I was having a panic attack because I couldn’t stand it anymore. I had planned to nurse until she was 2, but ended up having to wean her at around 21 months because of this.

Is there anything you feel that you have lost about yourself since becoming a mother? What have you gained?

Absolutely, this is something I struggle with. I go through phases where I feel like my identity is entirely based on being a mother. I’m better about it now because I know there are many other parts that make up my whole. 

However, what I’ve gained is the fact that being a mother IS such a large part of my whole and I’m proud of it. There’s nothing more meaningful I could do with my life than make sure my children are cared for and grow up to be kind and productive people.

What do you want your children to learn from you?

To be genuine. There’s going to be so many people in their lives trying to tell them who to be, but if they stay true to themselves they will always make the best decisions for THEM. I will always try to be transparent with them so they know our mistakes don’t define us and there’s a difference between *doing* something bad and *being* bad. 

I also really want them to have amazing imaginations. It’s such an important part of childhood and helps with other mental developments like critical thinking, contentment, and independence. I try to encourage it in as many ways as I can, which is why the daily creative playing is such a priority to me!