WHAT I DIDN't KNOW with my C Section (or what I have recently learned "belly birth" which I actually do prefer)

Posted by Camille Presber on

4 years ago and I still think I'm just as disgusted now as I was after the fact. I'll warn this blog isn't sugar, spice and everything nice. It's my honest experience with a lot of spice XD.

Here goes. As you all would know by now..I'm a researcher, a planner, organized and love to know every option available. Well let me preface the extreme shame I have in how I knew literally NOTHING about what was going to happen to me until I was in the OR getting prepped for an emergency as we could not find my son's heartbeat with the dy-od (no idea how to spell that thing) and I started to crash (the dy thing was a little metal piece that was put onto his head while he was still in my uterus). I'll skip the birth story for this one but this was obviously not the planned water birth or "magical" *slight sarcasm but not really* experience I had prepped and read about for ages and ages. 

I somehow never registered what this c word was. This could have been explained in another language and I would've known just as much.

What I will say is I remember a family member that came in and said "oh you'll be fine.. I had 4 of them"..when I still wasn't even able to sit up. Ummmm your experience is NOT mine, projecting yours is not appropriate in my time nor is anyones recovery going to be the same. What was done VERY well was my maid of honour surprising me with crave cupcakes variety mini pack, bless her soul. Being a blob is not easy for me at all so having treats and visitors passed the time by!

I had so much rage and resentment to the women in my life that kept silent: perhaps they never wanted to share at that time but when I did have the entire experience then all of the stories came out of the woodworks..hence the blog - I'm saying something so maybe you don't feel like a total failure or idiot like I did <3. 

Key takeaways: GET PICTURES TAKEN OF YOU - My Husband had nurses offering to take photos of him which he obviously now treasures...however this photo is the first one I have with my son besides the OR room. HIRE A PHOTOGRAPHER or demand your partner to remember to take them. Here is my first photo with my son 6 hours later..

BUY THE BELLY BAND...they are not for Cinderella they are for YOU..I was cheap and thought it was a gimmick..I was wrong. 

TAKE IT EASY - it's not for the benefit of the doctor's (well it kind of is b/c you could end up back in the ER 3 times like me post-birth). I just moved into my new house, had nothing unpacked and naturally couldn't sit so I figured if I push myself I will heal faster (in my head)..I think b/c when you're in physio the more you do your exercises the stronger you get..well my friend, that's not the case in this situation. What it did was tear a layer that under my skin that has now made very hard scar tissue.

Do not project your experience onto others - your experience is your own. I don't need to expand more on this one. Let Mom come to her own conclusions. However, don't just text "hows baby" because let me tell you their care is 10/10 for checkups and such whereas us Mom's seemed to be left in the dust for anything post even though we had the million appts leading up to the birth.

Don't say - "But you didn't really have the baby"....somehow this was said me from more than 1 person. I will say it was a couple older males but did have a female make this stupid freaking comment. I don't have to elaborate how insensitive it is and how WRONG it is. I did have the baby and had a scar to prove it. The "fail" feeling stayed with me for 2 years with constant shame as to why I couldn't just get to where I needed to for the vaginal.

GET SCAR MASSAGES - I only learned of this 2.5 years prior and still didn't have feeling from the front to my back I'm still fairly numb. I also can feel lots of scar tissue which apparently can highly benefit from massages and needling. 

YOU CAN HAVE A CLEAR CURTAIN - HA.HA.HA that's a no for me however Jeff will request one if we have a next time (fingers crossed this isn't in my future). I just looked at the light which I need to take a moment to comment on. I went from a dark birth room at midnight to calm me down to literally, OR BLINDING lights. I am the person that cracks jokes when it's high pressure so I said "what is this? I get sunglasses at the dentist for a pitiful light and this room doesn't give me that vip treatment?"....thinking the doctor would then give me the obvious sunglasses...nope they softly smiled with their eyes and said that's a first I've heard that but you probably do have a good point.. I'm still surprised even 4 years now..I will be that person that packs sunglasses next hospital bag...comic relief partly XD.

YOU DON'T GET TO HAVE BATHS *cue tears for the religious bather here that had all the boujee sitz things ready to roll - Yes I'm yelling here. I was SO looking forward to sitz baths. I bath every night, it's what calms my body down and I get a little "self care". If you want silly details, my husband would help me lift my legs into the shower which was not easy then he would use the wand to do my hair because I was too busy holding my bandages or holding my gutts in. I'm sure this isn't how it is for everyone but this was it for me. The reason is infections but man did those weeks suck to have to shower.

HAVE A RECLINER - Bless my Dad's soul. He had our old lazyboy from when I grew up and delivered it to our house b/c I couldn't get into our tall bed let alone twist in it. I unfortunately needed the recliner way before birth as I fell on ice and fractured my tailbone pregnant so I slept in the chair to be less painful. I think if I remember right I was in it for a month post-birth then I had co-slept with my son in our king bed after. Cue the tears for those mornings and nights that were oh' so dreamy. 

BRING YOUR OWN PILLOW TO THE HOSPITAL - You could be like me where this was NOT on my radar and then my SIL brought it when she took our fresh48 photo's. I held my pillow to my guts when I walked.

Story time *I woke up and the nurse came in and said it's time to walk..I laughed and said "okay" in a cheeky tone...cue the embarrassment (obviously I had some good pain meds going on). I couldn't sit up, I couldn't twist and when she and my husband turned my body so my legs were on the side of the bed they both stood there ready for me to be supported. I stood up and sheepishly sat on the edge of the bed "I'm good, lets try tomorrow." Well apparently that's not an option b/c blood clots or something along those lines. So of course I naturally bartered with this lovely nurse and said "okay how far are we talking, I'm not walking in the hallway when my insides want to be on the outside." She said "just to the bathroom door"..okay this was 3/4 of a car length away so potentially do-able and I said "you have a deal"....this is where my good ol' pillow saved me and I held it tight curled over and walked babysteps with my lovely catheter still in place and husband to do my little loop.....also LIFE HACK bring that pillow in the car and hold it tight..Saskatoon pot holes and train tracks are far more COMMON than I ever noticed. We were probably a hazard on the road but I couldn't handle much for that drive home. 

HAVE A SUPPORT PERSON AT HOME - I will preface I had not told many what our due date was. I wanted to not share the baby. I wanted to finally have my dream and be in a bubble for 1-2 weeks of just us as a unit. WELL when you're now having multiple sleepovers at the hospital and not mobile you are BORED. We had 14 people come the first day, I shared my sweet perfect 9lb bundle of joy with everyone. It was BLISSFUL. I did not tell anyone his name or gender it was all a SURPRISE fore every visiter. I took video's and I'd do this part all over again..obviously with the pandemic this will now be a home thing but man I was shocked how I did a 180 being so cooped up XD. Jeff worked from home for 2 weeks and I could have used more support for a couple weeks after if I had more people around to drive and keep my company etc.

YOU WILL PUKE A LOT (in the hospital) - I kept being told "oh did you get your pills yet" and well no I seemed to have never had those kept up with. Those poor darn nurses were puked on not 1 or 2 times but far more. I don't know why but that happened often for me but according to all of you this isn't just a me thing...for first 24 hours it was touch and go, then I was good but I never had much notice if you know what I mean. 

PACK FOR SEVERAL DAYS - I was blessed with a midwife - literally bless her soul, if she wasn't there for that birth which she didn't have to be with the csection, some very horrible things would've happened that she caught in time...so with that mentality of birth in mind I only packed lightly..nothing like these bloggers with suitcases and all these silly hospital bag video's that seem to all be trendy. I didn't need much but snacks would've been nice and some things for Jeff. We literally thought we would be home in a few hours not days...oops. 

DON'T GET BRAVE AND QUIT THE SOFTENERS - I mean you can but then message me later that I was right XD. I thought I was good to go a few weeks in and then omg the pain of no tomorrow. 


  • Babywearing was amazing because the compression on my guts was what I needed and you are not allowed (or suppose to) carry more than 10 lbs aka a carseat. 
  • I wore lots of lululemon skorts b/c of the compression bands and LOVED them! Anything that has some substance in that area is your friend.
  • Talk with others, don't feel like you are the only one that has gone through the hell. 


For the future: I will not allow to be induced, I would never hope an emergency csection on anyone. The recovery was the hardest physical thing I have had to go through ever and took forever because BOOKED csections are VERY different in every single way. I have seen my best friends birth video of the booked one and I cried, the room was making jokes and everything was calm and controlled.

If I didn't have my Midwife or Husband I'd be asking my best friend that's a specialist b/c I literally had no idea what was going on until afterwards. My Husband will not trust the system next time and will ask the questions so he can be informed and not almost miss the birth of his tiny human..everything got so harry that the nursse forgot him in the hallway so when he walked in I was not okay (and he has no idea what went on behind the closed doors) and had seconds before our 9lb baby came out screaming.

Did you have an emergency csection? Were you induced? How was your recovery?


All I have to say is Mom's are rockstars. Would I do it all over again? Absolutely, no question. Should I have had to go through any of the extreme's? No. No one should.


With love,




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  • Thank you for this post, wishing I had read it earlier!

    I also ended up with an emergency c due to induction. I was 10 days past our due date, scheduled for an induction BUT went into labor naturally the night before. My labor was not going fast enough after my epidural so the hospital staff wanted to speed it up. I consented but I did not know it would increase the chance of emergency c section, lack of knowledge on my part. Baby girl’s HR was dropping with the lack of breaks between my contractions and they had to get her out quick.

    I am hoping that if I am so lucky to have a second child I will be able to do a VBAC. My daughter is only 3.5 months old so it’s not on the timeline any day soon but definitely important to know more going into the next. I am grateful that both my daughter and I were healthy post birth (other than myself developing cellulitis of the incision site) but would 100% recommend other women to be more prepared than I and will be denying induction next time.

    Thanks for sharing Camille!!

    Alycia on
  • Thank you for sharing. This is so well written and so helpful.

    Ashley on
  • First. Thank you. Thank you for sharing the raw. The real . The hard.

    I was induced on a Thursday morning. Thursday morning they weren’t able to track contractions so they attached cords to baby inside to monitor contractions and babies heart beat.

    Friday at 3, no dilation, they moved me into a new position and left. 20 minutes later 10 nurses came rushing in , I got very sick and baby was in distress. Too many contractions too soon.

    We were rushed into emergency C-section at 350. Again I got very sick . By 420 baby was out. They showed her to me .

    I didn’t get to hold her- she was rushed to NICU. I wasn’t the first person to hold her, that will forever break my heart. I didn’t get to hold her until 24 hours after she was born because I went into shock from the pain.

    They slice us open, pull out our organs and a human, and then expect you to stand up and walk within hours.

    C-section mamas are a whole other level of powerful. Add a traumatic NICU stay and I feel super human.

    Sydney on

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