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Fischer's Birth Story, Part Three

Part Three: Recovery

Recovering from labor and delivery (not to mention 9+ months of pregnancy) sucks.

Recovering from a C-Section really sucks.

I always thought if I had to have a C-Section I would be really upset and sad. I was surprised that I didn't feel this way at all. As I was wheeled into my post-partum room, I felt pure relief, even thankfulness at my C-section and the ability to get Fischer out and save his life.

I was however, upset that I had to recover from a C-section. Here are the things I have found to be difficult in my experience:

  • Nausea - from the moment I was wheeled out of surgery into recover and later to post-partum, I battled nausea. I knew if I tried to sit up too fast I would throw up. It was just hard to coordinate nursing laying flat on my back, so I tried to sit up just a little bit...literally inches....bad choice, mama, bad choice. It took me a full 12 hours before I could even sit up a little bit without waves and waves of nausea (and this was with anti-nausea medication). 
  • Itching - Oh the itching. After surgery they gave me a medication called "demi-morph" (sp?) that is basically a time-released morphine that stays in your system for 24 hours. Now, I have had morphine before and never had any negative reactions. This little cocktail however made me itch from head to toe every time it would release medication. For the full 24 hours. Wow it was intense.
  • Hot flashes - also a reaction from the demi-morph. We kept our room temp as low as it would go and I was so so hot. 
  • Pain - It took a couple days for the pain to really set it. I had the morphine for the first 24 hours.  I also had been walking a lot because I had heard this was the key to fast healing is walking. So I walked. By Tuesday night, the pain, with the highest level of medication I was allowed, was unbearable. I cried it hurt so bad, but when I cried it made the pain worse so I tried to restrain myself. Finally, by the end of Wednesday, I was feeling a little better. The good news is, that was the worst of the pain. Since I've been home, I've actually been surprised at how much I havn't been hurting. I'm sore and tender at the incision site but for the most part feel pretty decent in this area. I was able to get off the heavy pain meds within a couple days and have just been taking Advil. 
  • Headache - On Wednesday in the hospital, I had an awful headache set in. It did not leave for days. I called my doctor on Saturday and he said it sounded like a spinal headache. Probably not a full-blown spinal headache since I had an epidural and not a spinal block, but the lining on my spinal cord was probably irritated causing the headache. The "cure" is to caffeinate and hydrate. It worked and after a couple days of a lot of caffeine, it was gone. 
  • Fatigue - I have to say this has been the hardest part since being home. Since I havn't been hurting like I expected to, I want to be able to operate on the same level as I was before but the truth is, a major surgery takes it out of you. On top of having a newborn who wants to eat all the time (which would be expected C-section or not), I just feel so tired and lack any energy and stamina. I think this is what takes the full 6 weeks to recover from. 
  • No heavy lifting - including my 26lb moose. My doctor said for around 2 weeks just depending on how I feel. He told me I didn't have to worry about pulling stitches or opening the incision, but it could hurt me if I tried to lift him too soon. I have lifted him a couple times without any effect on me, I just can't hold him for very long. 
  • Baby Blues - Next to the fatigue, this is the hardest. This would have effect on me C-section or not. I just feel sad sometimes and just get emotional sometimes for no reason. It is nothing severe, but it is something I have experienced all three times. I can rationally think through and know that what I am feeling is not "real" that is is spurred on by hormones, but it doesn't make it go away any faster. I am so thankful for a patient husband who never runs out of hugs and is always available to stop what he is doing to hold me. I know that hopefully very soon, I will snap out of it and feel "normal" again and I am very ready for that day. 
Even though this has been far from fun, and so much of it unexpected, I have seen and felt the Lord continue to walk me through this. He never changes regardless of my circumstances. He is always faithful. 

Kyle goes back to work next week and I will have all 3 kids by myself. I am so ready to establish a routine (and my very routine-driven children are too), but I am so overwhelmed as well. I highly cherish your prayers as we embark on this newest adventure. I know that the Lord will continue to show his faithfulness and I am trying to rest in that. 

**I do have to make note of the incredible family and friends who have helped us out. From sweet visits in the hospital, delicious meals, playing with LK and Shep, encouraging calls and texts, and invaluable prayers, we are so so blessed.

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