Claire’s Birth Story + My C-Section Recovery

I realized today that I never published Eloise’s birth story, I wrote it, but somehow I never finished the post. I went back and read it today & cried all over again. It really seems like it was just yesterday, and now not only is Eloise running around & talking, but baby Claire is already two weeks old. I really can’t keep up with this whole time thing! 😉
Let’s start with Claire. We had my c-section scheduled for July 1st, the first day that my doctor would be available to the surgery, even though I could have gone a few days earlier. I love love love my doctor, she delivered Eloise as well & was my doctor with Harper, even though she wasn’t the one to do my c-section that time. 
I was extremely nervous for this c-section, being that it was my third one, and I have had some issues with thinning scar tissue in my uterus from my first two. We went into the hospital at five in the morning, and I was immediately thrown off by us having a different type of surgery prep room than I had with the other two girls. For some reason, when we had Eloise, everything felt so familiar that it put me at ease, but this time around I felt like I was doing it for the first time since we had different surroundings. They started with my IV, which the nurse had all sorts of issues finding a vein, so they ended up putting it in a very awkward spot right where my thumb meets my wrist, making me unable to really move my thumb or bend my wrist. Not that this matters, it was just annoying & I don’t recommend ever getting an IV in that spot. The nurse came in to give me the sour drink (like a small mouthful) that helps to neutralize stomach acid, I remembered having it with the other girls but for some reason it did not settle well this time. I immediately felt super nauseous. And more nervous. We facetimed with Harper & Eloise while they ate breakfast, my parents stayed with them at our house while we were in the hospital. Seeing their faces & excitement definitely helped ease my nerves a bit.

After 30 more minutes of waiting while they gave me two bags of fluids, the anesthesiologist came to place my epidural. He had me lying down for my epidural, which I wasn’t used to since the first two times I was sitting up, I was shaking already from the cold IV bags & my nerves. The epidural was placed, and really was not painful, more uncomfortable if anything. I have very low blood pressure, and the epidural tends to cause it to drop even lower, so they had to administer the medicine slowly switching between the numbing medication & medication to keep my blood pressure up. Every time it dropped, I felt more and more nauseous. At this point I was shaking uncontrollably from the medicine, so they had a hard time taking my blood pressure, and the numbing wasn’t kicking in as quickly as it should have, so everything was moving at a snails pace. After maybe 45 minutes them poking me to see if I could feel anything sharp, they finally decided that the epidural was working correctly & it was go time! 
Once we got into the operating room, I felt better. I was so happy to see my doctors face & talk to all of the sweet nurses. I was crying (again, out of nerves & excitement) but really felt pretty calm at that point. During surgery, my doctor & anesthesiologist gave me a play by play of everything that was happening, and Brandon was by my side the entire time trying to distract himself from what they were saying by talking to me about whether baby Claire would look like Harper or Eloise. After just a few minutes on the table, at 8:20 am, Claire Vivien was born weighing 7lbs, 10oz. She had the cord wrapped around her neck & came out fighting to breathe, which caused her to have some broken blood vessels in her face. They whisked her away to the other side of the room, and told Brandon he could not come see her yet. I was in tears, wanting to know if she was okay, and finally we heard a loud scream & cry from across the room. Brandon got to go see her & after a few minutes of the nurses checking her out, he brought her over & I met my baby girl for the first time.
She had a full head of dark hair, a little squish face & looked so much like Harper when she was born. Once we were in the recovery room, Claire got her first bath & had a few tests done. The doctor recommended running some blood tests as they were a little bit concerned about the blood vessels. Claire’s doctor was worried she may have an infection, so they took her away for what seemed like hours to do blood work & monitor her. We were wheeled up to our room without our baby girl, it was heartbreaking & I was desperate to hold her. We worried & prayed, and finally they brought her to us & let us know that the initial results were negative but they would continue to monitor her blood cultures for an additional 48 hours. We were so happy to have her in our arms.

Later that evening, I got out of bed for the first time & was able to stand up on my own. I remember it being so painful after my c-section with Eloise, I was dreading it but it ended up not being too bad at all. I felt much better this time, and they took my epidural out first thing the next morning. Then I was able to shower & walk around during the rest of our hospital stay. We stayed in the hospital for three nights, which felt like a luxury vacation to be able to just nap all day with our new baby. By the time we were going home that Saturday, I really felt pretty good! I was pleasantly surprised with my overall recovery, this has been my easiest yet. I am putting this out there for those of you who are afraid or nervous for your first, second, third, etc. c-section. I know that they can all be different, but not all recoveries are like most of the horror stories out here. I was so thankful to people who gave me reassurance when I was nervous for my first one with Harper. Now that we are two weeks out, I almost feel like my old self again, I am so thankful for that.
We also thank God every day for our third healthy baby girl. Claire Vivien, we love you so much!
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  1. Every birth story is so beautiful, and this one is no exception! Thank you for sharing! (However, I did have a flash back of that nasty sour drink when you mentioned it…gag!) I am glad that you are recovering well and enjoying your new little bundle of joy!

  2. I am so glad your c/s went well! I went into labor with my son and then had to end up having a c/s so when I drank the meds to settle my stomach it made me VERY SICK. I think Claire looks sooo much like Elosie!!! Regardless, all three of them are adorable! 🙂 Congrats!

  3. So sorry for those scary moments but thank goodness for a 3rd healthy & beautiful baby girl! Glad that your recovery this time is going so well! Giving me baby fever over here! I have two girls close in age to yours. 😉

  4. Thank you for sharing your story! You are such a brave & beautiful mother. I love getting to follow you! Claire is a perfect addition to your sweet family!

  5. I teared up just reading Claire's birth story. It really is awful when you're worried and can't see them right away, isn't it? So happy you're healing well and you have your three amigos to entertain you!

  6. So happy to have read your birth story this time around, I gotta agree the third time around recovering has been a lot more easier than I imagined ( I was very nervous about that myself) But again Congratulations, love the birth photos and you my dear look beautiful just after having baby Claire

  7. Well thank you for making me cry at work! This brought back a flood of memories from 16 months ago when I first met my baby girl… such a perfect day! And girl, your C-section story is so similar to mine… it took my nurses forever to find my vein and they finally had to put my IV in a weird spot, too. I also have naturally super low blood pressure so I had issues with that as well, and then it took me forever to get numb after they administered my spinal. It felt like it took forever just to get the whole process started!

    Congratulations again! Claire is gorgeous just like her sisters. I hope you all are adjusting yet again to newborn life! Soak up those moments… I miss them so much.

  8. My second had the cord wrapped around his neck and ended up with bruises around his neck. He is a happy healthy 4 year old now (a little bit of a daredevil though) Glad you are recovering well and nursing is going good.

  9. I have my C-section scheduled for next week. I love reading your stories! They are so positive and detailed and make me feel so much better. Congrats on your newest addition! 🙂

  10. Beautiful. I teared up reading this, especially seeing the photos of you holding her looking like you might cry. I had a very long labor after my water broke, and they took my baby girl away for tests/monitoring after we got to hold her for a bit. I was so desperate to have her in my arms, I felt like my heart was breaking. Makes me cry every time I think about it, and she's nearly a year old. Love keeping up with your precious family! Welcome, little Claire!

  11. This story brought me to tears; I think it was your photos and the look on your face. You looked scared but hopeful and happy. I'm so glad little miss Claire is ok now. Thank you for sharing your birth story! 🙂 -NG

  12. yassss! I am so hesitant about a third section…so thank you for posting this story…I am so glad she is ok. and let me just say you look extremely awake and alert…after I had my surgeries I looked like I had just woke up from a drunken bender…you look like you are as fresh as a daisy…you were meant for this!!!!

  13. This totally made me cry as I can relate to so much of it with my little guy that was born almost a year ago. I'm glad you are healing well, mine was so much easier than I expected. And I shook like crazy during 12 hours of labor plus the c-section. I shook both before and after my epi, I was so sore from shaking. And we had some complications when he came out too, and had to wait what seemed forever to hear if he was ok and finally hear him cry. Then, since L&D was so busy, I wasn't able to have him in recovery with me for like an hour! They said it was over their limit. Um hello, he's a baby, he shouldn't count! It was so sad! But, he was with his daddy at least! And then he had to go into the hospital for three days after we went home due to me not having enough milk. It's so scary when you don't know if something may be wrong! Glad they could figure it out quick for you guys! Just wanted to let you know people have similar experiences! Congrats!

  14. Glad your recovery is going well and Claire is so beautiful! I've had the wrist IV before from an ER visit and it hurts like none other! The place they put it in (which sounds like the same place as you) was literally sore for months after they took it out. I chalked it up to the ER nurse being lazy, but come to find out one of my arms has deeper veins so that's why she couldn't find a vein thru my arm. Needless to say every time I need an IV and especially with the birth of my daughter last September I tell them don't you dare put it in my wrist! I have my second due in January and will be saying the same thing. It's the worst!

  15. What a beautiful birth story! and you looked amazing!
    The pictures show true emotions, love that one where you shed a tear.
    Im glad you had a speedy-recovery! Thanks for sharing!!!

  16. Ohh so glad you are feeling good!! She is a beauty… Thanks for the pep talk about c-sections. My baby girl was born via emergency c-section (cord prolapsed) and it was just about the scariest thing ever and im dreading the second one. Didnt take the drink maybe because mine was an emergency. You look so good right after I was out for hours! Congrats on the baby!! 😊

  17. This post is beautiful! It also increased my major baby fever for #2. My little one also had the cord around her and was rushed away to the nicu nurses. It's so scary, but I'm happy to hear that sweet Claire is just fine. Thank you for sharing your story and being honest, but also positive about life. I can't believe you were able to post twice this week already! Oh, and I hope this means that you're going to post Eloise 's birth story still.. so you know my baby fever can get even worse haha.
    Kendra

  18. Your new baby is beautiful, glad you were able to again endure the C-section and get on your feet so soon! I have had 2 C sections, but the second time around I was at least prepared and knew what was coming. And I wasn't out cold (like I was when I went through it the first time, I was induced and epidural had worn off), so I got to see my second baby right after she was "delivered". Nothing beats that feeling of having your newborn against your face right after she is born! Your pictures are VERY beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

  19. I love reading birth stories, but especially yours! After an "emergency" c-section (I use that word flippantly… my doctor told me 12 hours beforehand that I would probably be having it since my labor had stopped progressing, and he finally did the c-section after 27 hours of labor) that wasn't so great, I'm slightly nervous for it again. I'm glad to hear your repeats weren't so bad!

    Sweet little Claire is absolutely beautiful. Congratulations!!!

    xoxo

  20. Congratulations! I had a C-section after 16 hours of HypnoBirthing and an additional 10 hours of not responding to medical intervention. At the end of the day, a healthy baby and mommy are the most important. Enjoy your new beautiful baby girl!

    Strive to thrive,
    Em

  21. I loved reading your post and feel for you, I was due with my third child (second son) on July 13th – just this past Monday. But we lost him at 18 weeks. I delivered him to find out his cord was wrapped around his neck twice and they ruled that as the cause of his passing. I am so happy to hear that Claire is doing okay. She, along with Harper and Eloise are so beautiful. I love watching them grow up! You have the best posts to read. I have been following since a few months after Harper was born. While reading this I was definitely taken back to both C-Sections and I got a little nervous. We are 13 weeks along with another little baby and I don't want to go through it again! It's bad until I hear my babies cry! Then all of my nerves go away and I just want to see my littles. Thank you for sharing your story and congratulations to you all!

  22. Congratulations! So glad she arrived safely, and funny you reminded me about my epi and my low blood pressure during K's labor. The epi was too strong and my bp is really low too, at one point I almost passed out.

  23. I love birth stories and this was so sweet to read! How scary with the cord but so glad she was okay!!! Thanks for sharing! I can't wait to experience giving birth again. I'm so glad you're feeling well!

  24. This reminded me of my second c-section. I had my girl at 7 in the morning and didn't get to hold her until 9 that night-in the NICU. I knew it was God's plan and wasn't too worried. But it was hard not to be able to hold my babe.

  25. can't lie… these birth posts are always some of my fav to read!!! the genuine, raw emotion always comes back to me and i love all the details friend!!! thrilled for your AMAZING and beautiful family OXOX

  26. I just lost it looking at the third pic from the bottom. Your face is such a combination of emotions – that look of 'don't take my baby away from me again' and relief that she's in your arms and you aren't going to let go of her anytime soon! It's precious! Congrats to you and your family!

  27. The picture of you holding Claire for the first time, with the mascara tear running down your cheek was so beautiful yet brought tears to my eyes. Absolutely beautiful photo, hope you have it framed 🙂 So glad things turned out okay, can't even imagine what a stressful situation that was!

  28. Oh yeah, the stupid IV. I have NO clue why they put it in my thumb as my veins are really easy to hit elsewhere. It was awful! Every time I moved my hand it like stabbed in farther! If we have another I will make sure to request it NOT be placed there unless there is absolutely no other alternative….

  29. Heart melting! I am delivering my first baby (girl) in 4 weeks. Your blog has always made me look forward to having a family. Thanks for sharing your story! Your girls are the cutest things!

  30. Lovely story. I'm so jealous with your IV you look beautiful! I was on magnesium and IV fluids and blew up like a balloon. I'm curious, why do you and your doctor choose C-Section? No judgement, I just wondered what prevents your from having a vaginal delivery? Thanks 🙂

  31. I don't know why, but this post made me cry. I've never had a c-section. I only have one baby. But there's one photo of you holding Claire combined with the story of you being worried and wanting to hold her while they were testing her that I think every mother to a newborn–whether it's your first or not–experiences. That initial fear of worry, need to protect and maybe a bit of feeling less in control now that the little one is out of your body and is operating on it's own. Beautiful post. I love the honesty and beauty of these photos.

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