Part II: The Trauma of a C-Section
My son did not get an easy transition into the world. He did not get to feel my uterus wrap around his tiny body and make his way down the birth canal. In the only place he ever knew as "home", as safe, he was suddenly and forcefully pulled from my womb into a cold, bright room. With no hormonal releases from his body or mine to say, "this is it, let labor begin" he came out like a white cold turkey not knowing he needed to breath. The first hands to touch him were not mine, and the first voice he heard was not a familiar one. The first people who saw him, who touched and caressed him were not that of his mother or father. The first thing he felt in this world was not my warm chest, but the hard sterile warming table. The first eyes he gazed into were not the loving hazel eyes of his mother, but that of a nurse who viewed him as nothing more than another patient. My joy, my life and my vocation viewed and held as just another baby in the first seconds of his life. This was his introduction to the world.
And me...I was left numb to it all. I was brought into the hospital crying instead of full of excitement. I never felt a contraction or the intense pain that comes with childbirth. I had no active part whatsoever in my own child's birth. I was left to lay on the operating table and ask a thousand times, "is he out yet?". I was left shaking from head to toe from the drugs and felt completely out of control of my own body. I had to manuveur my head in every direction I could just to get the slightest peak, the slightest glance of my child! I had to listen to every word said around me, just so I knew he was alright. And worst of all, after NINE months of waiting, I had to wait to hold him in my arms and kiss his tiny face.
Looking Towards the Exam Table at Our Son
Finally Getting to Hold Him
Many people may think that I have over thought this event, or that I am making too big of a deal out of a simple c-section. Trust me, I have asked myself this many times. But the truth is, this is the way I feel about what happened that day. I did not write this post so that you will feel sorry for me or to try and over dramatize my experience. But I will say this: over 1/3 of all babies will be born via c-section, often times elected by the mother herself (on a side note, I am not at all against c-sections as a whole. If they are medically necessary, then by all means do a c-section. But I don't think that all c-sections done today are "medically necessary"). I believe very firmly that the way a child is brought into the world does matter. I believe in letting things happen naturally so as not the impede the awesome bonding experience between a mother and her baby. This is a hard view to hold in a society that views birth as a medical procedure instead of a natural event...but perhaps I can explain myself a little better.
Part III to Follow