Don’t fear a caesarean. And definitely do not listen to other people’s horror stories.
The minute I found out I would definitely have a caesarean, people crept out the woodwork to tell me how horrific it was, how long it took them to recover and even how they thought they were going to die. Great!
I had an elective caesarean because both babies were breech. And I had an absolutely amazing experience.
I was kept in the night before my caesarean was booked because I had protein in my urine and high blood pressure (I maintain my blood pressure was so high because they would let me go home). It turns out my girls were going to come that day regardless of surgery. My waters broke at 1:30am — so pleased I saved my mattress at home from that revolting mess — and was put straight to the top of the list for surgeries that day. Thank god, I wasn’t going to spend all day not being able to eat.
The surgery was very straight forward and I had no idea they had actually begun until one minute before Twin 1 was born. One minute later, they pulled Twin 2 out!
The most painful part of the surgery for me was putting the cannula in my wrist. Not even the spinal injection hurt which was what I was dreading the most. TMI, but even taking the catheter out (you’re numb when it goes in, don’t worry) wasn’t as painful as I thought — I think the anaesthetic was still slightly active.
My biggest piece of advice for anyone having a caesarean would be to listen to the professional advice and ignore everyone else. The whole “listen to your body” thing sounds hippy but it is true. I only took painkillers for four days afterwards. I missed a dose but then realised I wasn’t in any pain so didn’t actually need them (until my milk came through, that is). But, everyone is different so make sure you have enough paracetamol and ibuprofen to see you through the first week. You will also need to be able to sit up in bed easily. Something that may sound really easy to do until you have your stomach muscles cut through and essentially lose all ability to move.
The best thing I did while recovering was to decide to stay in hospital for an extra night, even though we were all able to be discharged. I was lucky enough to blag a private room (apparently you are meant to pay for them but I was never sent a bill) so I think that helped because I didn’t have the noises of other annoying people and their crying babies.