Birth Stories Guest Blog

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.

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