A little over a month ago, I gave birth to my third baby... a perfect boy we named Sebastian. It was my third c-section. And truthfully the easiest one physically. Mentally? That's another story... being pregnant and giving birth during a global pandemic isn't for the weak. 

While at the hospital I got to thinking about so many things women don't speak about when it comes to pregnancy and birth. I can only speak on my experience so that's what I wanted to share today. A few truths and things you probably didn't know about c-sections from this third time c-section mama. 

I didn't choose to have a c-section, as most women, my first cesarean was a medical emergency. My second was planned and my third also because my doctor didn't perform VBACs so we stuck to what we knew. Cesareans can be scary, I am not going to sugar coat it. It's a lot... the operation room, the anesthesia, the recovery... the gas! Yup, the gas. Add a pandemic to that and this third c-section was emotional different. 
Here are 5 things I don't think women share enough or at all, at least no one ever told me before:

1. You get very gassy. Since they open you up to get baby out, the air gets in your body and it's very painful. For me, this third time was terrible, I literally had to have my husband pat my back to get it out. True story lol I had gas in my shoulders and chest and it was terribly painful for the first few days. The good thing is that it's normal and your nurses will give you gas relief medication and help you through it.  

2. The first time you stand up can be very difficult. You will realize how much you use your abdominal muscles. Laughing, sneezing and standing up are painful but it goes away the more you move around. So be sure to get up and walk as soon as you are allowed to. Now a days, they make you get up the same day! When I had emme almost 6 years ago, it was the next day... but I actually felt better this time around than with my first and second cesarean. I remember with my second, I almost fainted. This time around, it was painful but I did it much more smoothly than the previous two. The woman body is so amazing. 

3. I always hear that going to the bathroom (to do #2) is painful but I have to be honest, I never had an issue. I do take a few days to go but I don't have pain or difficulty but I hear some or most do. So just be ready for that. The upside, you get stool softener and anything you need to help ease it. Even prune juice lol

4. I don't know if it was because of my anxiety this time around but my blood pressure was high pretty much the entire time I was at the hospital. The first day I was fine and all of a sudden it just went up and didn't come down for days. My doctor monitored me and it was scary, to the point where I hated when the nurse came to take my pressure because it made me so nervous. The nurses were amazing though and they understood, they would literally let me relax and apply my essential oils before taking my pressure lol. I had to breath in and out and they would remind to think happy thoughts. They knew it was my nerves and anxiety. So if this happens to you, know that it can be common. The only concern would be if you get a headache because then it can be postpartum preeclampsia. At least that's what they told me. 

5. Last, did you know you will feel numb for months to come? Yes, the incision area will be numb for months, sometimes even years. I forgot about that part and now that I am 5 weeks out I remember it. It's a strange feeling but nothing to worry about as this is normal. Just be sure that you clean it as soon as you are cleared to do so from your doctor. 
I wanted to share these hard truths because when they happened to me, I was nervous and scared and didn't know they were common. So I don't mean to scare you I just want you to know it's all going to be ok, but it can get a little hard but it will pass. 

All in all, with every surgery the recovery does gets easier. I had heard of this but now I can tell you from experience. My first c-section was definitely the hardest. By the second, it was so smooth and calm. I was up and walking right away and felt great, I was even sent home early! By the third, physically I was even better than the second but emotionally it was a different story but that's because of the crazy year we've had with this pandemic. The emotions and hormones were on another level. But all in all my physical recovery was great. I feel really good and I am happy to share that the third time around is definitely easier than the first. 

I really hope this post helps answer some questions and raw truths of what to expect and finally to confirm that c-sections are still beautiful and definitely do get easier as the years go by. Just remember, doctors perform these surgeries daily and they are pros. You will do great mama! Prayer and positive vibes!