Following the trauma of baby 1, for baby 2 I was adamant that I wanted a planned c-section. To some this might have seemed like an over reaction, but even though the chances of a 2nd cord prolapse were very low I simply couldn't take that chance. The thought of going through another labor & anything going wrong was terrifying.
I found out I was pregnant again at 6 weeks, I was getting pain in my scar so was sent for an early scan at 7 weeks. I had already decided my 'birth plan' so at my booking in appointment I told my midwife what I wanted. She was understanding, but advised to do my research & take my time to decide for sure. For the 2nd time, the baby was measuring small for dates, so I was referred to the hospital again. Seeing different consultants at each appointment was hard, having to explain what I wanted & why, then listen to each of them advise to try a natural birth. Eventually someone listened & I was sent to a class to explain the risks of a 2nd cesarean. It was held in a hospital by a very experienced midwife, it was informative without much bias but by the end of the class I felt the risks of having a 2nd were no more than having the 1st. Now, I'm not a medical professional, this was just mine & my husbands opinion. Plus, it would have taken a hell of a lot to convince me to put myself through another labor!
They kept checking at each appointment that I was sure I wanted to go through with it, then finally I was given a date for my pre op. It was a very strange day, I was made to feel a bit like I was doing the wrong thing. I was nervous & excited (& exhausted!) & if I hadn't been so 100% sure of my decision, then I probably would have been a bit upset. When I was signing the consent form, the nurse kept reiterating that I was consenting to 'major abdominal surgery' over & over again. I told her I was more than sure & happily signed the form.
Luckily, we were told to go into hospital 1st thing on the day of my cesarean. Baby 1 was only 15 months, so we left him sleeping & my Mum came to look after him & take him to nursery. The plan was for my husband to be able to collect him in the evening & bring him to meet his new baby sister. We wanted to try & make his life as normal as possible for as long as we could! We were 1st on the list, so went down to surgery without too much of a wait. It was very surreal, given that the last time we had been in that situation things had been terrifyingly quick & frantic. This time, everything was very calm & controlled. All of the doctors were so lovely & immediately made me feel very relaxed. Even after explaining that the sensation might feel a bit like someone doing the washing up in my tummy. They set about getting me ready, the oddest thing was the anesthetic, it was like a spray. They did a bit at my feet & kept asking if I could feel it, then moved up to my tummy. It felt like a huge responsibility, I was so scared that they'd start & I'd be able to feel it all! Luckily, I didn't & baby 2 was born just after 9am. I chose not to look at anything as I am super squeamish, so had a screen up, but as soon as she came into the world she was shown straight to us. I cried so much. The relief & joy was just too much & she looked so much like her brother. I was so so happy. They weighed her, cleaned her up & did what they needed to do, then we got to have cuddles & say a proper hello. I was stitched up & taken to recovery where baby had her first feed & we waited to be allowed to go back to the ward. I'm not sure if it was the drugs or the adrenaline, but I had the uncontrollable shakes. I got pins & needles in my hands & had to ask my husband to take the baby as I was frightened I'd drop her. After a drink & a rest, I felt much better & we were soon taken back to the ward.
My husband left me to rest & went home to see our dogs & collect baby 1 from nursery. In the end, we decided that it would be too much for everyone if they came to visit, so we stayed apart. That was tough, I felt so guilty, a feeling that I am now fully accustomed with. How was I going to share myself between to babies? How could I choose who needed me most? I didn't get much sleep that night.
In the morning, I knew what I had to do to be allowed home, so set about proving myself to the midwives! By lunch time, baby 2 had had all of the checks she needed & we were dicharged. My husband came to pick us up & our babies finally got to meet each other. It was a highly emotional moment for me, but they took it in their strides. We headed home together to start our new lives as a family of 4.