C-Section Recovery | 10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Having my Unplanned C-Section
Having a c section is such a different experience for each women who goes through it. I wanted to have a natural birth and I ended up having the absolute opposite. Giving birth is is such an emotional time! With the added factor of having major surgery and having to recover, there are a few things I wish I knew ahead of time. While everyone’s C-Section Recovery is different, I wanted to share my story and hope that it would help those of you worried or wondering about c-section recovery timeline or how to prepare for your upcoming c-section.
Even though I was in denial that I could have a c-section, there are some things I wish I knew beforehand! I legit cried at my 36 week appointment when my doctor said that since my baby was so big already it was a possibility....
I was induced at 40+3 after two days of NST and ultrasounds results. After 32 hours of labor (26 on Pitocin), I ended up having a c-section. I was terrified. Read more about my labor story here.
I honestly had no idea what to expect. I was so scared, but so many people have done it and survived sooo it couldn’t be THAT bad right!? I know people who had a tough time recovering and some people who bounced back super quick (my sister …eyeroll…hehe) Well, I did not recover quickly...
That’s the problem with birth though, I wanted all the answers, but everyone’s experience is so different! I hope this list helps you prepare and give you a better idea of what might come your way.
1. Everything Hurts
I do think that this general "I hurt everywhere" feeling was made worse by the 32 hour labor. I was tired, sore, and thirsty. In the recovery room after I was extremely sick to my stomach and throwing up was the worst thing ever, I couldn’t really do it because I had no stomach muscles! But they have me some medicine and I felt better almost instantly. My butt hurt from sitting in the uncomfortable hospital bed for hours at a time. My insides felt weird moving back into place. I was super swollen and obviously the sleep deprivation doesn't help :)
2. I legit forgot how to pee
I know, that sounds weird, but the second day they take the catheter out and you have to pee a certain volume in order to get the IV out of your hand. Well, since I had a long ass labor, I REALLY wanted to get that damn needle out of my arm. So, I went to go pee after drinking tons of water, and I literally didn't know what to do. Probably a whole minute later I figured it out ha! It was so weird! Also, try not to drink too much before going to the bathroom...I couldn't stand up straight because it hurt so bad when my bladder was full! Anyway, my doctor said the whole not knowing how to pee thing was normal because they actually move your bladder out of the way during the surgery and your muscles have to re-learn how to do it!
3. TMI...Pooping for the first time (and several times after that) was one of the worst things I’ve ever had to do.
They give you stool softeners at the hospital and then you get a prescription. TAKE THEM!! I unfortunately had to poop during my hospital stay and it literally took me 2 hours. Not only did it suck, I was soo pissed that I could have been sleeping while Parker was sleeping LOL
It was like I didn't have the right muscles to make it happen and not going for a few days wasn't helpful either. But eventually, I told myself I couldn't leave unless I went...and I did....
4. It would be difficult to hold my baby while nursing.
Could be because my baby was 9 lbs 7 oz, but none the less, it was difficult to have that pressure on my stomach. Utilize pillows!
If you don't have a Nursing Pillow yet, get one asap. They are amazing for nursing (I still use it at 6 months) and for laying, tummy time, and sitting up!
Seriously, I could not have done it without This Pillow that I ended up buying multiple so I could have one in various rooms :) Plus, not only are they are amazing for nursing (I still use it at 6 months) but they are awesome for laying, tummy time, and sitting up!
5. They press on your stomach a lot in the hospital and it hurts really bad
Yeah. But you'll survive :)
6. I couldn’t sit up on my own
The hardest thing about having the c-section was going from laying to sitting. It was easier in the hospital because your bed inclines and moves, but at home, it was a huge struggle! For the first week my husband had to get up when I got up to nurse to help me sit up :( It was really bad for a bout a week and after that it got better! After a while it was easier to lay on my side and get up from that position.
7. I could move around, but I was extremely slow.
It felt good to be up and about. Even in the hospital I felt like I liked moving around. We did stop at walgreens on the way home from the hospital and it felt like it took me forever to get to the back of the store lol I was moving around okay for a few weeks but did feel like it was slow motion for quite a while...
8. The car ride home was scary
Not only because you have this wonderful new baby but because all of the bumps and train tracks were really painful. ugh.
9. The pain/roughness didn't last long
It only took about a week for most of the pain to subside and two weeks to feel relatively normal. I look back on it now and realize that all of the things above sucked at the time, but really weren't that bad. I didn't worry about showering or getting dressed.
I just focused on me and my baby and lived in a comfy robe (this one) for two weeks :)
10. I would absolutely do it again because I gained the most beautiful & healthy daughter and my life changed for the better <3