If I could do it all over again…

So my hospital/birthing experience, of course, was unique to me.  I had a c-section.  If I could do it all over this is what I wish I knew before going through it all and what was useful to bring / what I wish I had brought with me.

We arrived at the hospital at 5:30am.  It was a scheduled c-section.  The cafeteria was not open.  I know my husband now wishes he had listened to me and gotten food on the way to the hospital for him.  I couldn’t eat anything (c-section = surgery, duh).  He didn’t get an opportunity to eat until the afternoon.  

For me the overall worst part of the c-section procedure was the nurse blowing the vain in my left hand while putting in my IV before the surgery took place.  If someone is identified as a trainee or if you overhear that the person person putting you’re IV in is fairly new, ask for someone experienced.  My damn hand was still hurting days after my discharge.

Don’t eat anything with mushrooms the day before your c-section.  FYI, it’s totally normal to throw up after your anesthesia is administered.  I threw up the mushrooms I had on my pizza for lunch the day before.  The anesthesiologist and my husband were in a deep discussion over why the mushrooms didn’t completely digest in my system.  Not the conversation I would have expected to be board by during my c-section.  

Durning the c-section the doctor moves some vital organs outside of your body while getting your baby out.  I did not know this.  This was told to me after the c-section.  This freaked me out.  I wished I had known beforehand.  

The hospital I delivered at was very pro-breastfeeding.  Which is fine if you are planning to breastfeed.  If you aren’t or up in the air about it then it could be uncomfortable as the nurses put a lot of pressure on you to nurse the baby.  I was up in the air about it and did say I would give it a try.  Apparently saying that gave the nurses the green light to take my boob and put it in my son’s mouth without asking me.  While I was in recovery.  It happened so fast I had no way to really process what was happening.  I nurses him for 6 days until I couldn’t take the pain anymore.  FYI your nipples can become cracked and could bleed.  My right one did.  And if you have latching issues then it is PAINFUL.  It felt like razor blades were cutting my nipple off whenever my son would nurse, which was every 2-3 hrs.  Think about that for a moment….

You get like no sleep in the hospital.  I didn’t send my son to the nursery since I was nursing him.  Not sure I would have sent him giving the opportunity to do it over.  But it was an option.  Maybe if I wasn’t nursing I would have…  

If I could do it over, pay for a private room if they don’t give you one.  It was an extra $200 a night.  My roommate sucked and it was uncomfortable having to share the room.  Next child I’m definitely paying for a private room.  

About 12 hours after your c-section they get you up to go to the bathroom.  It will look like a murder scene.  Blood was in my bed, on the floor, in the bathroom.  All over the place.  And the nurses not only make you pee into a cup but they watch you do it and help wipe you up.  Throw any pride you have out the window before having a c-section.  People will be look at and touching your privates all day and you won’t even know their names.  

I, like I’m sure most new mothers, brought way too much stuff with me.  Next time I will bring these items again because it actually made sense:

  • My iPad and cell phone. Hospital has free wifi.  TV/phone cost $10 a day.  I didn’t pay for that since I have a cell phone and my iPad has my DirectTV app so I was able to watch TV on that.  Genius on my part 😉
  • Charges for both.  And don’t forget your iPad charger like I did.  They called to say I forgot it but by the time my husband drove back to the hospital the next day to get it, someone had stolen it from the nurses desk.  Bastards.
  • Dry shampoo.  You will not be in the mood to do your hair everyday.  At least I wasn’t.  And I don’t have the type of hair that drys perfectly.  I need products or I have to blow dry/straighten it which again, I wasn’t not in the mood nor position to do.  Dry shampoo was my friend.  Along with a hair tie.  Don’t forget a hair tie like I did.
  • Face wash, contact stuff/glasses (if you wear them), toothbrush and toothpaste.  
  • The boopy.  In addition to it being so useful when nursing/feeding the baby, the hospital pillows suck and I sleeper with it when I wasn’t using it for the baby.
  • Bring like one or two pairs of granny panties.  The granny-er the better.  Night and high up to your belly button or better yet, covering it.  This won’t bother your new c-section scar and it will work out great with wearing those god awful pads when you leave.  Also get a bunch of maxi-pads, because you’ll be bleeding for weeks after giving birth.  I haven’t bleed much but I have bleed every day and my son is 5 weeks old now.  You only need to use the maxi pads on your last day at the hospital and when you get home, the hospital will provide an extremely unflattering mesh panties with ghetto pads while you are there.  
  • Bring very loose fitting PJ’s.  PJ’s that you can quickly whip out a boob when nursing and the nurses/doctors can easily see your c-section area with ease.  I’m glad I did this.  I felt more human in my own clothes and they were way more comfortable than those hospital gowns.  
  • Comfortable PJ’s or clothes to go home in.  You will most likely not want to wear jeans, even the maternity jeans.  I wore PJ’s home.  I kid you not.  I always care how I look, until I was in the hospital for 3 days after aging a baby.  I didn’t care at that point, I just wanted to be comfortable.  
  • Bring a pen.  You’ll have to be signing paperwork and tracking pee and poo and feedings, I wish I had a pen on hand and didn’t have to keep asking for a pencil.  

I hope this helps!

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