Friday, January 19, 2007

C-sections?

It's 8:23 and my daughter is not awake for the day yet. I'm kind of confused because she took an afternoon nap from 3-5 yesterday which usually means a late bedtime (8-8:30) and an early wake up (6-6:30). Ross left just after 6 and before he did, brought me the portable DVD player so I could persuade Sophia to lie in bed with me since he heard her "singing" in her bed. Right after he left she went quiet until NOW! OK she's barely starting to make some noises. Man-- if I could really figure out what formula of sleep gets her to sleep in until 8:30.... that's pretty nice.

So I have c-section on the mind. My friend Lizzie had hers' yesterday morning at 7:30 and is probably coming home today. In case anyone didn't know, I had a c-section with Sophia because she was breech--- (pretty much as breech as they come, feet up at ears, bum down, and head in my rib cage.) I was horrified when my doctor insisted that was my only option... I had fought so long with him to try and have the most natural experience I could handle. (I didn't want any induction, potossin, and in a perfect world, no epidural, but that was definitely up for debate- long labors sound insane to me without drugs.) Anyway, once I conceded to the fact that I didn't really have a choice, or if I thought I did, I could be putting my baby at danger, we went for the c-section. We even had to take her 3 weeks early since I was dilated 4 cm at that point and my going into true labor would have been dangerous. Sure enough, once she was out, and perfect and healthy, I couldn't have cared less what the process was and c-sections no longer seemed so bad. It helped that supposedly my doctor was particularly experienced with them and had the quickest recovery rate in the desert. We were able to go home the next day (like Lizzie will) and while in a lot of pain, I took ibuprofen for 5 days and managed it alright. The whole experience was much better than I'd read and heard about the surgery and over all, I could see why my doctor was, as I called him, a bit c-section happy.

So now, after watching Lizzie go through the same thing, I've been thinking a lot about the next one and I'm terrified all over again. Most doctors refuse, or strongly discourage VBACS (vaginal birth after cesarean). However they also strongly discourage more than three c-sections. So I've just realized that now I'm in a place where I'm either going to feel limited to the number of children I can have (which is just really sad and weird to me), or like I'm putting my baby and myself in danger if I try for a VBAC or try for over three c-sections. Of course they can't keep you from doing either (well my doctor WON'T do a VBAC but I'm sure I could find one that would), but how scary to go through an entire pregnancy knowing that you're pushing it a little bit and your uterus might rupture.

The dangers of VBAC are that during delivery, your scar could rupture and kill mother and child, or for ex. my sister knows someone whose scar ruptured, the baby's head got stuck in it and now she has brain damage-- that she wouldn't have had otherwise-- that would be hard to live with.

I think the dangers with multiple c-sections are just that carrying another baby could rupture your uterus... bad things etc... and then there's just tons of increased risk that comes along with another surgery at that point-- I read about them but don't remember medical terms-- there were a lot. Ross keeps pointing out that a lot of women have high risk pregnancies and do great, and it probably just depends on the body and how well it's recovered from the previous pregnancies.

OK this is probably getting soooo boring. Anyone who has not had a baby might be particularly bored... anyone who has might totally disagree with something I said. I guess my point is just that I'm really concerned lately because I feel like there's a good chance we'll be told we should only have three children and that if we want more, which is the lesser of two dangers? A VBAC, or a 4th c-section. I probably need to stop worrying and figure that we'll have as many as we're supposed to have safely-- as Ross keeps saying. It will all work out... etc... I'm still worried.

So Sophia is talking up a storm in her bed now... better go get her.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Lillie ... I stumbled upon your blog randomly and just wanted to leave some encouragement regarding the c-section thing. My step-mother's first child was born via c-section, also due to a breech baby. She then proceeded to have four children after that and never had another c-section. So, just be stubborn with your doc when the time rolls around!

Sarah said...

A very informative post, Lil, I (one who has not had children yet)learned so much. Wow, I knew there were risks post Csec but didn't know they entailed limiting the number of children you should have. That is a scary thought! But like you said, there is so much in between here and there. I'm sure there are many women who had Csections for their first baby who have more than 4 children, and who didn't have life-threatening complications. You're right - you'll have help deciding along the way... and there are quite a few years between here and there (3 more kids? that's at least 6 years-ish, right?)... so a lot can change both in your life and medically.

And find a doctor when it's time who will do what you want; safely. My mom had my little sister at 43, and her original doctor strongly suggested an abortion with all of her complications. Luckily, she found a doctor who would take her case and support the pregnancy, and though not easy, our little Shayla was meant to be here! You'll have help when you need it - either in making the decision or getting through it. Someone as strong as you? Absolutely.

michelleross said...

hey love :) sorry to know you're mind is heavy today...have you talked with lizzie about it? is this her second time around with the c-section? is her doctor your same one? maybe she can be a help. (hey, what kind did she have, what name, etc?)

it seems to me that much of what we READ about, especially about pregnancy risks, is a bit out-dated..like what sarah was saying about her mom having a late pregnancy...and how much weight gain is normal now as opposed to before....and even with my miscarriage, and how long until we could start trying again. the books were on the WAY conservative end, and my doctor, it seemed on the other end. (which I appreciated, of course) it seems like doctors are giving our STRONG bodies more of the trust they deserve nowadays..so I have to think if you find a GREAT doctor (which it seems like you have for the moment, if you decide to do all c-sections) who really knows their stuff AND who you trust, you will be able to do more than the norm. I'm with sarah...someone as strong as you? no question.

Denae said...

Personally, I would want to find a doctor who would support me in trying a VBAC. The percentage of uterine rupture in labor/births after a c-section is really low. Like you said, I think a lot of docs now days are c-section happy. C-sections are easy and convenient and controllable for the doctor, that's why they like them. Don't worry though, you guys will know what to do when the time comes.

Lillie said...

I didn't anticipate comments to this post making me feel so much better about things. They did. Thank you for your insight everyone, I guess I needed some more opinions.

mamafraper said...

Sweet daughter, Lillie...it was so fun to get caught up on your entries...your thoughts on Ross are so wonderful. He must have cried when he read the things you wrote...and above all, I love his good-to-the-core quality. Give Lizzie my love and congratulations! And, one pregnancy at a time, prayer and solid medical opinions will carry you threw the future pregnancies and how those blessed children will come into the world. Love you!

Missy said...

I wish I could say more, but I believe that Denae is right. The percentage of uterine ruptures post c-section are decreasing each year. I can understand your fear of having a baby vaginally if something were to happen to your new baby like your sister's friend. I think you'll have to talk to your doctor (whether you choose a new one or not). Even if you were to get a second c-section, I don't think that would make it any more of a risk to try a VBAC for the third or fourth. You'll know and like Sarah said, there are years between your second and fourth child coming. Did Lizzie have a c-section with her first? What did she name her baby and how is she doing? Congrats to her!