The Shame of a C-Section

The Shame of a C-SectionMoozles, my first-born, turns seven tomorrow. But rather than writing a post gushing about how much I love her (I obviously do), I thought I would share her birth story since April is C-Section Awareness Month. When I was pregnant with Moozles, rather than doing NCT classes, we paid handsomely for hypnobirthing classes. I had my mind, and heart, set on a natural birth. That’s right, no epidural, just breathing and panting like the cavewomen did.

But my body, and my baby, had other ideas. I remember, a few days after going on maternity leave, feeling my baby moving around like she was trying to turn around. But she just could not manage it. When I next saw the midwife, she told me that the baby was in position. But I told her that the baby was breech. I could feel her head pressed against my ribs. The midwife disagreed but I was insistent, so she referred me to the consultant midwife for a scan. When the consultant midwife performed the scan, she saw that my baby was indeed breech. I burst into tears. I knew my baby was breech. But I did not want it to be true. I did not want a caesarean section. I felt like my body had let myself down. That I had let my baby down. I felt such shame and sadness.

Sometimes, when a baby is breech, the consultant will try to move the baby around. But in my case, they did not think there would be enough room. I have a bicornuate uterus, which means that I have a little wall near the middle of my womb. This means that my babies have a little less room when they are close to term. This makes it harder for them to turn around, leading to being breech.

Two weeks later, Moozles was born by elective c-section on the 22nd April at St. Thomas’ Hospital in London (the first pic below is a bit bloody, be warned). No, I did not go into labour. But I still gave birth. And I became a mother that day. After I recovered from my c-section, I started going to baby groups and meeting other new mums. And the shame returned when I told other mums that I had had a c-section. I did not read blogs back then. I didn’t have any irreverent mummy blogs who I could turn to, who could tell me that c-sections did not make me less of a mother. It took some time before I grew to accept my situation.

There is no longer any sadness or shame. Time has that effect. I can look back and just be grateful that my daughter had a stress-free arrival into the world.

The Shame of a C-Section The Shame of a C-Section The Shame of a C-Section The Shame of a C-Section

Happy birthday to my sweet little girl. xx