*** I am not a medical professional. Just sharing my experience with all of you, that I had post the delivery of my elder son about 4 years ago.
In India, it is the society’s responsibility, when a woman delivers a child. It is considered more as a social affair than a personal affair. That is definitely the best and the worst part about our society. Why ? Where as it is always amazing to have mental and physical support of the family around, we also have this habit about being judgmental about anything and everything that others do.
When a child is born, a mother is born with him. A child may be delivered by either Natural birth, Assisted birth method or through a C – Section, depending on the circumstances of the mother and the child. Though C- Section even today is criticized by our society, but trust me it is a medical boon for mothers. The procedure if planned well, can help both the mother and child have a smooth journey.
A C- Section, requires you to stay in the hospital for 5 days in general, depending on the physical condition of the mother and the child. It is not always that every day is the same. Each day has its own set of challenges, which obviously nobody tells you about. So here is what 5 days post the C-section looks like:-
Day 1 – The Delivery
Before taking you to the Operation Theater, for a C-section, they usually given you Enema or similar medicine to clear your tummy, subsequent to which, they put on Urine Catheter, which stays with you for next two days. Once the surgery is done and you hear the melodious sound of your baby’s first cry, they stitch you up and you are wheeled back to your room. I was almost half conscious during my surgery and could feeling something is tugging my stomach from below my ribs. I could hear the conversation between my doctors and the nurses and feel somebody’s hands on my eye patch.
While I was being wheeled back to my room, I was half conscious and could figure out things but not completely. They showed me my son on my way back to the room. I could not sit up so Latching during the golden hour was just not possible. My son was fed his first meal of formula milk and he burped and puked on my brother’s shoulder. Meanwhile, I could hear everyone’s excited voices, but till afternoon I barely had any strength to open my eyes. After a few hours with continuous friends and relatives pouring in. I tried to initiate the conversation but was too tired. I was being injected through the saline, eating medicines but no food, since the previous day. Every hour the Assistant Doctor would come inside and ask the guest to speak less and leave fast as it is causing disturbance to the patient.
Yes, those initial 48 hours are most crucial to the mother and the child and especially the mother, because it takes some time to wear off the anesthesia.
Day 2 – Trying to be normal again
My first day just passed in a blink. The second day, I was feeling much better, back to the social media and whatsapp and chatting. Again everyone instructed me to talk less and rest as much as I could, as hospital is the only place wherein you can get complete rest. By the second day afternoon, I requested the doctor if the urine catheter could be removed. She said if I am confident to walk to the bathroom (of course with assistance), then I can have it removed. Slowly, I was asked to get up, using the support of my elbows. I successfully managed to do so. Though I could not sit for long, yet managed to do so. I started drinking water slowly. The number of Salines per day had also reduced.
I tried to slowly latch the baby, but it was difficult in the beginning again the doctors asked me to sleep the maximum and to start wearing a Bra.
Day 3 – The toughest day for me.
This was a day, which a couple of my cousins had already warned me about. They day, when it would be a mess. I woke up to a terrible head ache and an uneasy stomach. That one hour was horrible. I tried to drink water, yet it was uneasy. I just cannot express my pain in words. The sister then came and again provided me with Enema. Once I was administered the same and went to the washroom to empty my bowels, my head seemed to be somewhat normal.
When I told my doctor about the same, she said its mostly due to gas as for almost 2 and half days my stomach was dry and it is just now that it is getting accustomed to food and water, it would take sometime to come back to normal, in the meanwhile take sufficient rest. Slowly and steadily, I started to feed as it was only now that I started with liquid food and my body could also produce milk.
Day 3 Night – The Realization
That night my son started crying uncontrollably. No amount of feeding or cleaning him would help. We could not figure out what went wrong. We asked the sisters, they were also of least help. That crying was very painful for me. My mother tried to hold him and walk him around but still no relief, he cried continuously for hours and then ultimately went to sleep.
It was only recently, after reading on a lot of material that I came to know, why we had to face such a terrible night. Seems, its only by the 3rd day or 2nd day that the baby realizes that it is out in the real world and not in his mother’s womb. Though a lot of actions like breathing, passing of urine, stool has been done by him alone, it is only now that they miss the warmth of a mother’s womb. That is the reason that they cry. Similarly, we heard other children cry from other wards, on other days.
Day 4 – A normal day
After the previous night of mess. I could barely hold myself. I went off to sleep, but felt incomplete, I asked my mom to keep the baby near me. That night I slept with My Son next to me for the first time. I was tired but still did not want to miss a moment to admire the tiny angel that I had created. I walked a little bit around the room, with support.
Day 5 – The Discharge
By God’s grace and my Doctor’s hands everything went on very well and I was discharged on the 5th Day. I was given a few instructions by my doctor, which were
a.Always do your own personal work. No keeping maids for self bathing.
b. Try and walk around little bit for the next few days. I remember even my cousin telling me that they will discharge you from the hospital only if you start walking.
c. No external or traditional medicines as I have been administered sufficient medicines to heal my body post the surgery.
d. Can eat everything in moderation, as I did not have any other health issues.
e. If possible to reduce the fat around my stomach and thighs, so that there are no further complications.
Whether you deliver your child by any method, your body will go through certain changes, but that does not reduce your motherhood or your love for your child. As friends and relatives of a new mother, it is important that we support her and not bombard her with our information and presumptions.