I just posted this in my due date group thread but I thought others here facing CS might appreciate it.
Caitlin's birth story (or "I love caesarians" )
I was due on 20 May 2011. On 5 May (so 37+6) I felt normal and went to the anasthetist in the morning to discuss my scheduled CS the following week. I had requested a CS for non-medical reasons and my OB had agreed to it. Had my appt, did some shopping in town, went home and had a bite of lunch then walked the dog.
Whilst walking the dog I had some clear fluid discharge which I didn't think anything of. I then fed the horses and chooks, carted bucketloads of water to the horses etc (still felt normal).
At about 5.30pm I had a bit more discharge and this time it was a little pink. It still would only have been a tablespoon or two. I rang the hospital about 6pm and they said I should come in for a check. We waited til DH had had his dinner (I wasn't up to eating but that was normal for me during pregnancy!) then drove into the hospital. I was so sure they were going to do a cursory check and send me home that I didn't even take my bag.
Got to hospital, they hooked me up on the scan thingy for 20 mins which showed the baby was fine, and I was only having mild BH contractions (the same ones I'd been having nightly for weeks). The MW did a vaginal swab which came back positive for amniotic fluid - my waters had indeed broken. There was a bit more of a trickle after the swab but no real 'gush' (and still no true contractions).
OB came in and said we might as well bring the CS forward to tonight. Anaesthetist, paed, nurses etc were called in and I was taken to surgery at 10pm. Everyone was lovely, relaxed and making an effort to make it a positive experience for DH and me, lots of light joking and checking that I was feeling okay.
I had a canula inserted in my hand and was hooked up to a drip. The anaesthetist ran something in that I think was a mild sedative - it STUNG! He said to me "I'm sorry there's only one way to say this, this is going to hurt a bit" and then shot it up the drip line. I swore and everyone laughed and from then on I made jokes about him hurting me - but in truth the spinal block didn't hurt at all. The local stung a tiny bit and then they told me he was doing the spinal but I didn't feel it.
So then it was onto my back and the OB put my urinary catheter in (very dignified I'm sure...) then prepped me up, made sure the spinal was working and started cutting (he didn't laugh when I made some stupid joke about screaming and then going "just joshing"). There was a few minutes of pushing and pulling where everyone kept asking if I was okay, and the anaesthetist's assistant tried to convince me to name the baby after her, then I heard the OB say something like "here she is" and lifted Caitlin up.
(I'm getting a bit teary now recalling this)
Up until that point I had been calm, controlled and casual but once I saw my daughter I burst into tears and couldn't even speak. The aneasthetist's assistant asked me what her name was and I couldn't say it, I just couldn't stop crying. They showed Caitlin to me and then handed her to the paediatrician who prounounced her a "perfect 10". I'm not sure what they did but DH was there by her side for a couple of minutes while she was checked over, then he briefly held her and then passed her to me and laid her on my chest while they stitched me up. One of the midwives pointed out how Caitlin turned to the sound of my voice every time I said anything, which made me cry even more.
They finished stitching me up and the OB pulled out his iphone, cos we hadn't brought a camera (it was in the bag we didn't bring ) and took a pic of DH, Caitlin and me, then emailed it to our home address. Service definitely above and beyond the call of duty!
I was wheeled out to recovery - I'm pretty sure DH carried Caitlin but I don't really remember. The three of us stayed there for a while chatting with the anaesthetist and midwives while they made sure the feeling was returning to my body as it should, then we came back down to the maternity ward. I felt fine other than shaking uncontrollably, which seems to be my body's usual response to any sort of stress!
By about midnight I was comfortably settled in my room, Caitlin had had a feed and been taken to the nursery, and DH had headed home for the night. I didn't sleep a wink that night, I was so adrenalised and couldn't stop thinking about Caitlin. The midwives kept checking on me but I didn't have much pain, and they gave me lots of good drugs for what I did have.
Recovery since has been great - two days later I don't have any pain in the surgery site, the only discomfort I have is the uterus contracting. They are keeping me on Voltaren and Pandadeine to make sure I don't slip into having any more pain but so far so good! I didn't like the lunch provided by the hospital today so I actually left Caitlin in the nursery and went out for a walk and bought Subway. I feel pretty much normal - and she is completely perfect.
Whoops, sorry this turned into a novel but I wanted to reassure anyone else who is facing a CS. Honestly, I am so pleased to have chosen this path!