Posted by: birdsandsquirrels | January 10, 2010

birth story part two: the c section

Once the c section was decided on, things happened very quickly.

S had to pack up our stuff in the labor and delivery room and get ready to join us in the operating room. I already had the epidural in place, so they moved me downstairs to the OR. It was such an odd experience. The OR was smaller than I expected, and was very cold. The anesthesiologist was so nice to me, but not very nice to the nurses. I began shaking very badly, but I knew to probably expect that. They brought S in, and he sat down and held my hand. I was worried that he wouldn’t be able to handle being in the room for the surgery, but he did wonderfully. He even ended up seeing some blood and the placenta but didn’t pass out! The anesthesiologist asked if I wanted a mirror so that I could see her being pulled out, and I said YES!

Before I knew it, they had started cutting and tugging and I looked up in the mirror and saw a bunch of red watery fluid gush across. Then there she was, with a sweet little cry, arms and legs flailing. They showed her to us and took her to the warmer, and I couldn’t stop crying and shaking. It was so strange and wonderful to finally see what she looked like. She looks so much like my dad, which means a lot to me, because he passed away 5 years ago, and seeing him in her is such a great reminder of his presence. The warmer was right next to S, so we could see them drying her off and weighing her and everything. Eventually they handed baby to S, and he got to hold her for the first time. I kissed her soft cheek and told her we love her so much. We both had such happy tears running down our faces. I couldn’t stop crying the whole time, saying over and over “I can’t believe she’s here.”

I remember asking if there was a reason she wouldn’t descend, and my doctor said she was really wedged in there and that my pelvis is small and that she would never have fit vaginally. I think I also asked how my uterus and ovaries looked, and she laughed and said they look fine.

After they finished sewing me up, they put the baby in my arms and wheeled me down to recovery. I remember distinctly feeling scared that my arms wouldn’t hold her. I was shaking so much that I could barely hold her, and I was so afraid of dropping her. It totally stressed me out. I mean, I wanted to hold her, but I was numb as fuck and dizzy and weak. S took her and held her while they got me situated. My blood pressure dropped quite low (I think it was 74/45 at one point), so they gave me a ton of extra fluids. That first half hour in recovery they had me try to get her to latch on, which was great, but again, I was flat on my back, about to pass out, and couldn’t really hold her or position her well. She did suck, but it hurt, and I knew enough about latch problems to know that things might not be going well. They gave her a bath and handed her back to S.

Right after she was born, S had updated the twitter page, and announced her name, which we had kept somewhat secret up until then. For those that remember the name fiasco, we did end up sticking with the name we liked originally, which is a very very slight variation of the name claimed months ago by some family members for their baby, who is now 20 something weeks pregnant. No one has said a word to us about it. The cousin in question sent a congratulatory text and did not say anything about the name either. I don’t care one bit what anyone thinks about the name. It is so perfect for her, and I am glad we stuck to our our original intention.

At some point, I was wheeled up to a postpartum room, and I got so lucky there. I got a nice big room with a lovely view of downtown AND my own shower. According to my doula, that was very lucky because some of the postpartum rooms are tiny and don’t have their own showers.

Part 3 to come tomorrow.



  1. Sounds like a good story to tell her later 🙂 Love it. What is her name anyway?

    Enjoy your miracle, they grow and change so fast it’s unbelievable 🙂

  2. This is so well-written and I’m so glad you captured all these details now, so you can hold onto them. I am SO happy for you and hoping that you are enjoying this special time with baby bird!

  3. Bird she is just so precious.

  4. Ah yes, the shakes are so common, seems to me even more with epidural C/S than with spinals. I guess better that than feeling too much!
    Glad to hear your DH did so well in there!

  5. Well, I’m glad you got this up since I’m trying to prepare myself for a possible c-section. I had the shakes from shock once and they were terrible, I can’t imagine how scary holding a baby would be with those going on. Glad it turned out well. I’m kinda surprised you wanted to see it… I consider myself strong stomached, but I don’t think I could do that.

  6. It sounds like things went pretty well for you! The shaking part is bad. I wish there was a way to avoid it.

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