It's a c-section!

A panicked mother's guide to the almighty cesarean

Resources

Sites to Visit

When you envisioned the birth of your child, you probably weren't dreaming of a c-section. This article by the American Pregnancy Association provides some great tips about how to incorporate ideas from your birth plan into your new situation. Although personally, I'd skip the part where they hold up a mirror. The sheet is there for a reason.

If you are interested in how the surgery is performed, this slideshow from MedlinePlus has a jargon-free description with helpful illustrations, as opposed to stress-inducing pictures of real surgery.

The March of Dimes also provides a great summary of what to expect during a c-section, including important questions to discuss with your doctor.

I touched on fetal distress as one of the reasons for having a c-section, but I wanted to emphasize that it very serious and complicated, and, as you may have noticed, I am not a doctor. For a more in-depth description of what fetal distress is and how it is treated, visit the baby centre, which was verified by real doctors.

Networks

Due to a push among women toward natural birthing options, mothers who give birth via Link to http://www.cafemom.com c-section can feel disappointed or like they have failed, especially regarding stalled labor. In response to this, there are dozens of support groups and networks on sites like Mothering.com and CafeMom to share encouragement with other c-section moms.

Helpful Products

Boppy pillow The Boppy Pillow helped immensely when it came to breastfeeding, particularly in the middle of the night. I did not have one in the hospital and I really struggled to find a comfortable position, but being able to rest her on the pillow took pressure off of my abdomen.

This article on Maternity.com describes a few styles of post-partum girdles. The hospital gave me something that resembled a giant ACE bandage that was difficult to put on without assistance and too big after a few days once the swelling went down. I did, however, appreciate that it great support and made me feel very secure at the site of the incision. A friend suggested I buy a girdle, which conjured the image of a medieval corset, but I looked into it and found one that really helped.

Photo of long-handled grabbing tool

You're going to have to trust me on this one. My brother had a toy similar to this Grabber that I borrowed during my first week at home. It may look ridiculous now, but once you drop the pacifier for the 8th time and try to reach it without bending at the waist, you will see this as the precious gift that it is.