Many people asked : “So… is it by natural birth or cesarean?”
And many are still ignorant that multiples will be born preterm. Hmm…since it’s preterm and x3 preemies, natural birth is definitely mission impossible.
So how “pre” term is it? Well, that depends on individuals. The national gestation period for twin is 36 weeks and triplets is 32-33 weeks. We were slightly more “ambitious” and aimed for 35th week from the very beginning. Well… our OBGYN told us 34th week is already a big success and as the pregnancy moved into the 3rd trimester, she was even prepared to deliver the babies at 32th week if my frequent contractions worsen. (Yes, I have contraction from the mid of 2nd trimester onwards, read more about my winding pregnancy journey here)
So it must be by Cesarean – a delivery method which is popular among celebrity moms and over showered by pretty misconceptions such as it’s painless, fast, easier than natural birth, leaves your vagina uncut, able to choose an auspicious delivery date. *Grin* Wrong wrong wrong.
I really regret not reading the book which Roger borrowed from the library “Everything you need to know about Cesarean”, prior to my delivery. I always tossed it aside, sign… should have read the details instead of merely browsing through the summary pages on the eve of delivery. As a result of my ignorant, I was completely caught off guard. Other than feeling excited by my OBGYN’s comments that there would be a big team of nurses, OBGYN and pediatricians in the operation room, so much so that Roger was not allowed to tag along since the room would be very crowded, I wasn’t prepared for the post-op difficulties at all. Sign…
Thus I will like to “warn” you of the facts you should know about Cesarean so that you will be mentally prepared.
No, it’s not done in a cosy lovely room.
Most of the hospital will decorate and furnish the delivery room so as to reduce the distress during labor. However, for Cesarean due to multiples delivery (e.g triplets) or complications, it has to be conducted in a big operation theater. Thus be prepared to celebrate your commencement of motherhood (which is the most touching moment in most women’s lives) lying on a small and cold operating bed, in a scary and mechanically filled theater.
Yes, you still need epidural.
You may have heard of moms who went through natural birth complaining about how scary epidural injection was as it’s injected at the back of your spine (refer to image), and thought that it’s not required for Cesarean. Hehehe, wrong. You’ll still need that couple with other anesthetics measures, so that you will feel painless from the chest downwards. Thus be prepared for this scary injection. Well, at least this is what attribute to the gem of Cesarean – being painless. Although you’ll still feel a slight “pulling pressure” when they pull out the baby, trust me, the whole delivery process is painless, “senseless”. In fact, you can only “hear” the delivery process, when the nurse/doctor narrates the process to you.
No, you can’t see the baby immediately.
Unlike natural birth, whereby the mom can see and feel the baby “coming out” and in most circumstances, nurses will pass the baby to the mom immediately after birth, you won’t experience this for Cesarean. A cloth screen will be placed above your chest so that you won’t be terrified by the bloody process, but that also means you won’t see the baby coming out. And once the baby is out, he/she will be hurried off for a whole lots of inspection. If the baby is ok, and there’s time, the nurses may show you the baby. But for my case, beside hearing their cries and seeing 1 baby from the corner of my eye (which happen to lie on the inspection station near to me), Roger – who wasn’t even in the operation theater, was the 1st one to see and touch them while they’re on their way to the special care units and nursery.
Be prepared to be “bedridden”.
Firstly, you got to wait for the anesthetics effects to go off completely. That will take around 1 day. Alas once the sensation comes back, be prepared to take lots of pain killers for the tummy cramps, leg cramps, and sickening backache (due to epidural injection). And you are supposed to get out of bed and try walking on the 2nd/3rd day so that recovery will be faster, even though you would have wish that you can lie on the bed forever. Whoever said Cesarean is painless, please line up so that I can give you a slap on the face.
Yes, you’re indeed 80 years old.
Why do I say that? Well, firstly, you’re attached with a urination bag initially, and secondly you are “forced” to wear XXXL granny panty (not to pressurize your stitches). Nurses will then check with you “Have you urinate or pass motion? Is it soft or hard?” And if you’re not doing it, they will encourage you to do it.
There’s nothing more embarrassing then using bed pan for urination and passing motion. Well, guess that’s the only “motivation” to kick me off the bed and start walking to the loo, despite in severe pain.
You can’t get your tummy back in shape that fast.
Ok, there’s this post-natal tummy binder to squeeze it back to shape, and in Asia, we will also go for the Malay post-natal tummy tuck massage. Alas for Cesarean…sign…thanks to the binder, my wound was pressurized and bleed. I was re-admitted again 3 days after discharge. It took me more than 1 month to heal. As for the Malay massage, got to wait till the wound heal. So while waiting for the wound to heal, I can’t do much other than continue wearing baggy maternity clothing to hide it and hoping it will shrink miraculously.
Thus, please please please, read more about Cesarean prior to the operation so that you can be mentally prepared. Click here for more details.
We are so so so lucky that the pregnancy journey came to an end and along this winding road, with so many odds and possibilities that the pregnancy will end up in disaster, we keep to our faith that God will lead us and bless our babies with a smooth delivery. So on 11 April 2011, in week 35, 3 healthy babies are born by C-section: Asher 李宇恒 2kg, Brayden 李宇哲 2.2kg, Charlotte 李宇心 2.2kg! Praise the Lord for the miracles!
Brayden and Charlotte had slightly low blood sugar so they spent their first night in “special care unit” for close monitoring and feeding. Thereafter, they were fine and returned to the normal nursery. On day 5 of my admission, all 3 were fit and healthy to go home with me. What we thought is mission impossible (deliver beyond the national gestation period for triplets and 3 babies are able to go home with mom) and see it as a fairy tale which will only happen to others, occur right in our lives!!!
Here are the video and photos of this blessed delivery!