Both of my children were born via planned c-section. It was obviously not what I had in mind when I first got pregnant and envisioned how it would all go down but it’s what happened and I had to accept it. I have heard many people suggest that a c-section is the easy way out and that is simply not the case.
When I hear someone joke that a c-section is the easy way out I honestly want to punch them in the face. First of all, not only is it untrue, it is also incredibly hurtful for someone who had a c-section to hear. For the vast majority of us, we did not exactly have a choice in the matter. In my case, it was discovered during my first pregnancy that I had a freakishly large ovarian cyst and I had surgery to have it removed while 15 weeks pregnant. Over the course of my pregnancy, the tumor (which was benign, fortunately) grew back. This was found at my 36-week ultrasound and I had a c-section at 37 weeks- I was almost out of amniotic fluid and the cyst and my ovary had to come out. I was devastated as up until that point, I had my heart set on a natural birth.
I tried for a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) for my son and it did not work out- I hit my due date and had not dilated even a fingertip and my doctor will not induce for a VBAC for fear of pitocin creating strong enough contractions that my uterus could rupture. I accepted the fact that I was having a second c-section and I had several friends and family members suggest that it was better this way as it was “easier” than being in labor. This is so infuriating. Would you tell someone heading into any other abdominal surgery that it was “easy”? There are so many risks inherent with getting a 6-inch wide cut in your stomach and having all of your organs messed with- it is just beyond ignorant to say anything about this is the easy way out.
Not only is the surgery itself daunting, there is also the recovery. I will say I was fortunate and recovered relatively quickly both times but it was still no picnic and I have heard from many fellow c-section moms how hard it was to get back to normal afterward. My abdomen was sore for several weeks and even wearing a seat-belt while driving was painful for quite some time. It was months before my ab muscles felt normal again even after the pain was over- any c-section mom knows what I mean. I couldn’t even lay on my stomach again until at least three months out because everything down there felt out of place.
So many women who have c-sections are already upset enough at the fact of not having a regular labor- it is so insulting on top of that to suggest that this is the “easy” way to have a baby. Whenever I hear it, even though I know it’s bullshit, I can’t help but feel that I did something wrong by not having a vaginal birth. Having a baby is difficult and physically draining no matter how they come out and it would be nice if everyone kept that in mind instead of making c-section moms feel less than.
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