Six Lessons Learned from Six Cesareans

whether by choice or necessity, these are a few things I've learned about the aftermath of a c-section.

People are usually surprised to learn that I have six kids, but I’ve seen jaws hit the floor when I mention I had six cesarean sections. Although that number of C-sections is not ideal, my small humans would not come into the world the way babies are meant to, so it was back to the operating table for this mama.

Here are my six notable takeaways about having six C-sections:

Each C-section is not worse than the previous one.

I had assumed it would get worse each time. This was not the case. Each C-section was different, and so was my recovery. My fourth C-section was rough, then when I had my fifth (only 17-months later), it went really well. The biggest piece of advice I have for a good recovery is GET OUT OF BED as soon as humanly possible.

I thought the nurses were mean forcing me to get up so soon after surgery, but they know their stuff. The sooner I got up, the better my recovery.

Don’t be rushed out of the hospital.

My fourth C-section recovery was tough. I had babe on a Sunday and two days later I was still on a catheter and fainting if I tried to stand up. When a medical professional came into my hospital room that Tuesday morning and said, “how do you feel about going home?” I was pretty direct with my response: “How do you feel about going to hell?”

Needless to say, no one rushed me out of hospital that day.

Find a place to convalesce.

After that rough fourth C-section, the thought of going home to care for three other children under the age of five was too much. Instead, I went to my mother’s house with my sweet little babe to rest for another few days before facing reality. Remember, you have had major surgery – you do need to take time to recover. If you can hide out somewhere for a few extra days, do it!

You will split stitches. Just sayin’.

The more children you have, the more difficult it is to recovery properly from your C-section. It is very difficult not to lift a toddler or walk past that basket of laundry that needs to be carried upstairs. But don’t. Just don’t. It’s not worth the split stitches.

Don’t drive.

Check your insurance policy. Most insurance companies don’t cover you for six weeks after major surgery. Not driving for six weeks when you have six children to get around was an absolute killer…and I may not have followed this one to the T.

Try to avoid the C-section in the first place.

Having your babies surgically extracted is not awesome. If you can push them out the way they’re meant to come, do it. Turning the birth of your children into a major medical procedure kinda sucks. Obviously, I had no choice, and neither do many, many women. But I hear women saying they’d prefer a C-section to a vaginal birth and I JUST DON’T GET IT.

 

IMAGE SOURCE: FTLAUDGIRL VIA GETTY IMAGES

 

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Veteran mother, Julie Cole has six very young children in her charge and is the co-founder of Mabel’s Labels Inc. She has encountered more than her share of fellow moms looking for advice, primarily about how she manages to juggle life with such a large brood.

With humour, she provides an upfront view of life in a busy family, including honesty about cereal for dinner, monstrous carpool schedules, and advocating for her child with autism.

Julie has become a well-known personality amidst Canadian moms. Her charismatic, dynamic personality has led to various speaking engagements, from morning TV shows to university level business classes.  Read Julie's blog for a motherload of practical advice on babies, balance, bedlam and beyond...

Follow Julie on Twitter or email her at julie@mabel.ca