My biggest baby was 9.5 pounds, and least complicated labour. My first three were vaginal births, with the third being delivered on the way to theatre for a c-sec.
My fourth however was breech, and was manually turned at 37 weeks so I could avoid a c-sec, with an induction booked for the 38th wk due to my complex medical issues.
At 37 wks and 6 days (induction the next day) I started bleeding very heavily. Ambulance rushed me to hospital, with me having regular contractions. Was taken to delivery where they felt we could continue with the labour despite the bleeding, as bub was ok.
They broke my waters, and blood just gushed all over the doctor and floor. Bub's heart rate dropped, so it was off for a c-sec. I had a spinal block done immediately, as it works faster than an epidural, and within seconds they had made the cut.
They were worried over the spinal working properly due to my damaged spine, and I felt a stinging with the cut but couldn't bear not seeing bub born and making sure he was ok, so didn't say anything. I have a very high pain tolerance, so figured I'd get through it for bub.
But when they put their hands in to get him out, I felt everything tearing in a white hot pain from my belly button up. Apparently I sucked my breath in and screwed my eyes shut, so the anaesthetist (who knew what I could tolerate) told them to stop, and promptly put the gas on my face while pressing down on the artery in my neck to knock me out.
I was lucky, as I would have pushed as long as possible to have a vaginal birth as bubs heart rate actually steadied in the op theatre, so felt a bit cheated afterwards. However, that lasted for 5 seconds, as bub was in NICU after having been resuscitated at birth. So he had a normal heart rate, but in fact he was literally drowning in the blood from a torn placenta. He ended up in NICU for a month.
So for me, from the moment that bleeding started there is no way my body could have done anything differently. I still feel sadness that I missed my sons birth totally, but am thankful that the c-section saved his life.
There isn't enough info available on all the reasons a c-section might be needed, and not enough people saying that a c-sec is simply another form of birth, such as breech, homebirth etc.
And I think new mums should be offered counselling before leaving the hospital. What's needed is maybe a midwife who is very much respectful of mums choices in feeding etc, and is very knowledgeable and informed about all the things that can happen in labour and birth, and has empathy no matter the situation.
I would have loved this, with all of my births. For someone like the above, who has read my file and knows what birth I had, and to talk, discuss and allow me to celebrate or cry on how the experience was for me.
Imagine how much sadness and guilt mums could offload, and how much it would help in the weeks to come.