Love reading positive birth stories, you’re in the right place…. This positive birth story is with Zoe and how she welcomed her first baby via a planned cesarean section due to her baby presenting as breech.

Like a lot of people, I had really had hoped for a super chilled out water birth but my little girl had other ideas! ☺️ We went for a private 4D scan at 30 weeks and she was transverse with her feet covering her face so we went for a rescan the following week and she was still in the same position. At my next midwife appointment I asked them how they thought she was positioned and they thought she was breech by this point so sent me for a presentation scan. This confirmed she was breech so we then returned again at the start of our 36th week where we were checked again and then booked for our c-section. It was booked for 39+1 and it was crazy knowing this is the latest we’d meet our baby girl! We made the decision to keep the date private and just tell our parents as I didn’t want the added pressure of everyone knowing exactly when she was coming, it’s bad enough being asked “is she here yet?”  all the time.

I re-watched all the info about c-section etc on the course to refresh my memory and did a bit of research online too as my hospital gave me zero info! I just knew I was to go in for my pre-op on the Sat and then back in for the op on the Mon! The time came and other than feeling unprepared I was pretty calm to be honest, no laying awake at night worrying or anything like I’d expected (just the usual wake up every hour for a wee instead!). The thing I was most worried about was the whole being in hospital thing, especially knowing that my partner had to leave. I’ve never had a stay in hospital until this point so that made me very anxious. I think this distracted me from the anxiety about the procedure itself.

We arrived at the hospital at 7.30am and were told we were 2nd in the queue so had a few hours to wait but it was super chilled out and actually really nice to spend that time together. When the time came to go into theatre we wandered along the corridor and into the room where we’d meet our girl! How exciting! They were trialling having partners there start to finish so he was allowed in while the spinal was done and was allowed to stay as long as I was in there – I didn’t know the alternative was a possibility so I was very grateful of our luck that they started this on the day we went in. I sat on the bed with my partner in front of me and as they put the cannula in I started to cry – think it all hit me at that very moment how terrified I actually was.

They then did the spinal, I am not remotely bothered by needles/injections or anything like that so the initial injection was absolutely fine. The spinal itself was a bit of pushing etc but I don’t remember it to be particularly sore. It did however cause my left arm and leg to fly up in the air which was scary but everything was of course absolutely fine. The worst part of the whole procedure for me was the fact I got the shakes and my teeth would not stop chattering the entire time and I kept biting my tongue which was unpleasant. The anaesthetist was an absolute star and kept us both very distracted by chatting the whole way through and when I felt sick she fixed that in seconds. I’ve read a lot of others mention the anaesthetist and how great they were and now I totally see why! The procedure itself did not hurt at all of course, it was just a very strange sensation and it was weird not being able to wiggle my toes.

When they said they could see her feet I could not believe it! I then don’t remember seeing her until they brought her over to me but hearing her cry was the most overwhelmingly emotional and beautiful moment of my whole life. My partner went over with her and was able to trim the cord – I was so pleased he was able to have this time with her. She was then brought over and laid on my chest, but because of the position I was in I couldn’t see her face so he was taking photos and showing me them on his phone screen. Again, there was no pain for the remainder of the surgery but I could feel a lot more moving around for this part which was odd and I kept asking “how long left?” but to be honest I haven’t a clue how long the whole thing took. I also have no memory of leaving theatre – it really is strange that I’ve forgotten certain bits when I was fully awake but I remember the important stuff I think. 

The tea and toast was UNREAL, could’ve eaten it 1 million times over as I’d been fasting since 22:00 the day before and hadn’t had a drink since midnight! We spent a few hours just enjoying our time together as a three and trying to feed until they wanted me up and about. This was strange but fine and I was worried about catheter removal but this was also absolutely fine. We were lucky because she was born at 12 noon and we were able to stay in our own room together until 10pm. I spent the first night just staring at my baby, don’t think I had a wink of sleep which was a terrible idea but I couldn’t help it! We then stayed a second night in hospital because as much as I was desperate to go home we just weren’t quite ready and we hadn’t cracked feeding yet so in hindsight I’m really glad we stayed that extra night. We arrived 7.30am Monday and finally got home at about 5pm on Wednesday. I was over the moon to be home and have an extra pair of hands because I was finding it difficult to pick her up etc after the surgery but this is to be expected. 

Although it was the opposite of what I’d imagined, and I do still feel a tiny bit sad that I didn’t get to experience ‘labour’ as it were, there were definitely some huge positives and at the end of the day the most important thing is that our daughter is here safe and sound.

If anyone else has a planned c-section please do not be worried! All I’ll say is take massive knickers (the more high waisted the better!), lots of snacks and drinks in case you spend a couple of days, and maybe a couple extra outfits for the baby than you originally packed unless you know you are able to have visitors etc. We ran out of sleepsuits and water wipes but we had 2 visits a day so my partner brought extra bits and bobs for us. I also went home in a big comfy dress as this didn’t take any bending down to put on and take a pillow for the journey home to put between your tummy and seatbelt – this is a tip I saw on here I think and it was great.

Click the link for more information about The Bump to Baby Chapter’s Hypnobirthing and Antenatal Online Course. Know what you can do to stack the odds in your favour for the birth that you want. Videos, checklists, audios & a support group all created by a midwife to get you feeling excited, prepared and confident for birth.