April is Cesarean section awareness month and we decided to tell the stories of different Moms who had their baby's via C-section.
This is going to be a series and we hope it enlightens you when you read through it. These stories will also touch on the myths around C-section births.
Our first Mom on the series today is Grace Oriaghan, Mom to beautiful baby Arielle. Grab your popcorn and read through Grace's story.
Qus 1. What is your ideal birth plan, and why?
I've never fancied pushing a baby out of my vagina. The uncertainty and endless waiting for the water to break gave me a headache. I started praying to God that I didn't want a vaginal birth, that He should touch my gynecologist to allow me to go for CS; because most doctors won't approve a CS if there isn't a need. God answered my prayers o, and I had a Cesarean section.
Qus 2. Can you describe your experience with having a C-section?
At 38 weeks, I was so done being pregnant, I went to the hospital and told the doctors that my tummy was too small for my baby; she wasn't moving as much as she used to before. My gynecologist checked me and said I was not dilated, I didn't want a vaginal birth, so I wasn't bothered. I got admitted and was told I'd be induced; again, I wasn't worried.
After monitoring my baby and me for a while, they said her vitals were fluctuating, and they didn't want to stress my baby with the rigor of contraction and pushing. So they'd schedule me for a CS; I said now you people are talking. I was so glad as they wheeled me into the theater Ÿ‚🤣🤣
Qus 3. Did you have any concerns or fear before the procedure?
Nope, the hospital I used was good. The gynecologist knew what she was doing, so there was nothing to fear. I prayed about it and was so excited to finally meet my baby.
Qus 4. How did you prepare for the C-section, both physically and emotionally?
Hmmn, did I prepare? Ÿ˜‚ The main preparation I did was to pray that God should orchestrate everything so I have a C-Section rather than vaginal birth. While at that, I packed my hospital bag as usual. Asides, I’m not sure CS delivery requires any particular things to pack.
Qus 5. How did you feel during the procedure?
Drowsy, sleepy, in and out of consciousness, speaking gibberish and asking questions. I was told that I sang Hillsong music at some point. I was in la la land, but honestly—the best delivery experience in my opinion.
Qus 6. How was your recovery process following the C-section?
The 4th trimester was difficult because it was hard work for me. My recovery was okay and would have been better if I didn't have a newborn to cater for. Imagine healing from a major surgery yet caring for someone else. But thankfully, I had the most supportive family with me, so my recovery went pretty well.
Qus 7. Were there any unexpected challenges during your recovery?
Yeah, things like the stitches ripping off, having swollen legs, headache, and general weakness. But I was able to overcome these challenges by just prioritizing myself and resting. I wasn't exclusively breastfeeding, so I could leave my baby with my mother-in-law and sleep for long periods so my body could heal properly.
Qus 8. How did you manage any pain or discomfort after the procedure?
Thankfully, I didn't experience much pain or discomfort, and I honestly don't know the anesthesia they put me on, but it was strong. People say you'd start feeling the pain after the anesthesia wears out, but I didn't feel anything. If I did, it was almost insignificant. Grateful for that!
Qus 9. What products help you with CS recovery?
For the first few days, it's advised that you don't get the incision site wet to avoid infection. So I did nothing in that area for the first 1 to 2 weeks. After the dressing was removed and the stitches dissolved, I used the Pūre Baby Mama Balm on the incision site, especially when it felt itchy. Honestly, that helped to calm it down. That's all I did.
Qus 10. Did you feel supported during your recovery by your healthcare providers and loved ones?
Yes, 100%. I kept demanding the support and care that I needed. I didn't assume they should know how to care for me; I asked for care and help whenever required.
Note: Never assume. Ask when you need to. Assumption is a deadly weapon.
Qus 11. How has your experience with having a C-section impacted your life?
If at all, It just made me grateful for medical advancement and the availability of different pregnancy and delivery care options. It also reinforced in my mind that CS might be the way for me with subsequent deliveries.
Qus 12. Do you feel intimidated about delivering via CS or do you feel like a proud mom that can openly talk about her birth experience?
Intimidated where? I have heard comments asking mothers if they gave birth normally or via CS as if delivery via CS is abnormal. Thankfully I've not had anyone ask me such questions. But if I have the chance to have this conversation anywhere and any day, I will talk about my birth experience with pride because no birth is easier or better than the other. Period!
Qus 13. Do you have any advice for other women who may be having a C-section?
Just breathe, mama, don't entertain any fear. Relax, pray, and as you are wheeled into the theater, remember that you'd meet your baby in approximately 45 minutes (the best feeling ever).
Don't forget to share this with an expecting Mom. What myth have you heard about CS?