Tegan's Birth StoryJun 08, 2022
Combining the joys of living with Hyperemesis Gravidarum, with being told that you have a Bicornuate Uterus... things started out a little stressful for Tegan and her family!
I'm so grateful to Tegan for sharing such an honest and open birthing story with us. Read on to hear about both of her birthing experiences...
Please share a little bit about your life before falling pregnant:
Prior to having our first child, my husband and I had been together for 8 years, I was working as a Registered Nurse at a local hospital and we had recently moved in to our new home.
We were very excited to start our family and I found out I was pregnant on my 27th birthday!
I had terrible all day sickness early on which quickly turned to Hyperemesis. I struggled to eat and drink for many months.
At my first appointment with my Obstetrician it was discovered that I have a bicornuate uterus, something I had never heard of before. The obstetrician explained all the risks and complications that may occur and it was so overwhelming at first.
Thankfully with close monitoring throughout the pregnancy the only significant issue was that my baby remained breech and it was not safe to attempt an ECV. Because of this I was booked for a c-section.
My little girl was born by planned C-section at 38 weeks.
I was quite nervous about the procedure and felt quite vulnerable. It seemed as though there were 100 people in the room but it all went well.
I was able to hold her after she had been checked over by the paediatrician and we went back to the hospital room together.
Was there anything unexpected, surprising, or negative about your C-section birth?
The unexpected part of the c-section birth for me were the uncontrollable shaking that lasted for a few hours post procedure and the numbness that remains around my scar.
The negatives were the disconnect I felt from my birthing experience. I was very well supported but I felt I had no control of the situation and as though I was not a real mother because I was unable to even attempt a 'normal' birth.
How was your physical recovery?
In the early days, I had to keep up with regular pain medication and was assisted by my husband and family with the tasks I was unable to do. I was not very good at asking for help and at times pushed myself to do more which may have slowed my recovery. I increased my activity as the weeks went on and was eventually able to return to normal although my core strength is still something I continue to work on.
Two and a half years later, I gave birth to my son at 36 weeks, again by C-section due to him being breech, and pre term due to reduced foetal movement.
I was unable to hold him for more than a minute in theatre before he was taken to the special care nursery for 5 days.
Despite the circumstances I felt far more at ease with my second c-section, I think knowing what to expect and having the confidence to advocate for my wishes and needs made a big difference.
I was also up and about much sooner as I wanted to walk to the nursery to feed him and I believe this helped my recovery.
My second birth and postpartum experience was very healing and I had no doubt in my mind this time that I was a real mum.
Do you have any tips or advice that you’d go back to give your pre C-section self?
Be kind to yourself.
Having a c-section does not mean you have failed.
Don't be afraid to ask questions or ask for help, and do remember that your own feelings and needs are important.
Thank you Tegan! I love that you went into your second birth with so much more confidence and knowledge - knowledge is definitely power!
To read more about a Bicornuate Uterus, you can read this.
And if you'd like to share your C-Section story with us, please get in touch with me.
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