Its uncommon to hear that someone is planning a Cesarean birth. Many have fears around surgery, or are striving for an intervention free birth. Some people do so much research and take the prenatal classes, read the books, and their baby is breech, or they have another condition that may warrant a cesarean. More often people just go through the motions of their pregnancy, maybe read a blog post, or Pinterest article or two about 'how to avoid a c-section'... but there sometimes is just nothing you can do.
When your baby, or your own well being is in question it's very difficult to go against the current and push boundaries (but if fighting for a Breech vaginal birth is something you're interested in, please shoot us an email!) Cesareans are often demonized, and I would like that to end. A cesarean is a responsible way to birth your baby given your circumstances, and we are blessed here in London to be close to such an amazing hospital when it comes to emergencies.
We all want to avoid trauma. Thats the short version of our goals. We want to emerge from this birth adventure with our heart and soul, and our body (most of it anyways) intact, and our babies pink and crying! Not just Alive Mom, Alive baby, which it can feel like
If you are someone who was hoping for a Vaginal birth and just found out a cesarean is on the table, here is just a little bit of advice for moving forward.
1. Ask yourself some questions...
- What emotions come to mind when you think about what a cesarean birth involves?
- Do you have any judgements or preconceived notions about people who have cesareans? Is there a way to reframe those thoughts?
- If you have an unplanned cesarean, what CAN you preserve from your original birth plan?
- What helps you feel grounded and relaxed?
2. Prepare for the birth.
This isn't much different from preparing for a vaginal birth. Just change up your content specific to your new birth choice. Listen to podcasts about cesareans. Do some research about cesarean recovery. We love 'The Birth Hour', 'The Pragmatic Doulas', and 'Birthfit' for some empowering cesarean episodes.
Practice your relaxation techniques. Meditation, breath work, listening to guided relaxations. These are incredible stress relief tools and can help whether its a vaginal birth OR cesarean.
3. Your doula can still help!
So you hired a doula to help you get that 'dream birth'... guess what... We support ALL variations of births. We have seen it all and know how to adjust our schedules and where our energy needs to be for assisting you.
Some of the ways we can help are:
- We can help weigh your options using evidence based information if you have a decision ahead of you.
- We can assist in communicating your wishes to your care team.
-We can aid your partner in being more involved in the birth by explaining things about the procedure and operating room, making them more comfortable.
-We can support you in bonding with baby after the birth.
-Help with infant feeding
-Talk with you about the birth and processing all the things that occured.
Remember: Your Cesarean birth can be just as beautiful and empowering as your vaginal birth. Its in your hands to feel empowered, present, and in control of your choices.
Hiring a Doula can help ease this transition, and take so much of the fear of unknown out of it.
If you're having a cesarean and are worried or fearful, please reach out. We have support for that.