I had an emergency c-section with my son, and opted for scheduled c-sections with my daughters. I had gestational diabetes with Sophie and ended up with it again with Emma. It was well managed, I saw my midwife every 4 weeks during 1st and 2nd tri then every fortnight in 3rd, and every week during the end weeks which is normal in New Zealand. I was also seeing consultants at the hospital, a diabetes nurse and had a couple of growth scans in 3rd tri. Everything was looking good - fundal height was about 6 weeks ahead but Emma was 50th centile for my customised growth chart (this was new to me, they didn't have those with my other kids). I often had pains low down to the right and left, sometimes I would be curled up on the floor with them. My midwife said round ligament pains. My section was booked very early on in the pregnancy for 39 weeks exactly (July 22nd). The week before though, the hospital called to change it to the day before and we had to be at hospital by 7am. The 21st of July arrived, we all got up early and took the kids to my MILs house. OH and I got to hospital, waited around a bit, got changed into a gown (me) and scrubs (him). We then went into a pre-op waiting room and waited some more. It was so boring but also so nerve-wracking! We were so anxious about having another baby and there wasn't much else to talk about. At 10:15am it was time to go to theatre. Unfortunately my midwife couldn't make it (she was heavily pregnant herself and has a 2 year old) so a hospital midwife was there instead. I walked into theatre with my partner Mathew, we were introduced to all the staff. They were all surprised my midwife wasn't there and tut-tutted. The surgeon was lovely which was a nice distraction! He was a very good-looking older man and very charming with a sexy accent haha. His name was Matthias. I was seated on the edge of the table and held Mathews hands while I had the spinal inserted. I hate that part the most! I was seated for a while as they realised the table wasn't quite ready, so that was freaky sitting there going numb! Mat and a nurse helped me stay up. They layed me down and checked that I was properly numb - yep. The surgeon made his preparations, the curtain was hooked up and it was all go. Mat sat to my left. My left arm had the blood pressure cuff and my right had the cannula. Matthias was chatting to me about what he was doing as he went along. There was a fair amount of scar tissue and adhesions so he was taking his time. I was constantly asked how I was feeling by the nurses and midwife and it was really lovely. The staff there were amazing. I did feel sad that Tracey, my midwife, wasn't there though. It doesn't take long before the baby makes their appearance during a c-section - before I knew it, the curtain was lowered and I saw Emma's head sticking out. I didn't get to do that with my other babies and it was cool! He let her head sit out for about 20 seconds then gently pulled her body out. She did take one breath and made one gurgling cry noise, but went floppy and closed her eyes and didn't breathe. She was quickly taken off to one side. I didn't know it at the time but she was totally unresponsive, not breathing and was being resuscitated. I sent Mat off to be with her. Meanwhile the surgeon announced that my uterus was torn in 2 places and may have had these "windows" for some time. He asked if I ever had pain and I explained that I often had since about 13 weeks. It took ages to get my uterus repaired and I was also getting my tubes tied. He wanted to be careful to not cut off the blood supply to my ovaries and took his time. The spinal was wearing off by now, it was extremely painful. I also lost the ability to swallow (which happened during surgery with Sophie too) and my face was so itchy it was driving me mad. The hospital midwife was bring me cold wash cloths to sooth my face which didn't help but it was nice to have her attentions. I felt so mixed up. So upset the baby was unwell, distressed about being in pain and devastated that I couldn't have skin to skin and breastfeed in theatre, which I had been so hoping to do. Emma was taken from theatre to the special care baby unit. They got her breathing just fine, but her oxygen saturation was sitting at about 86% when she didn't have the oxygen mask on and her lungs sounded very wet. Matthias finished up and said to me that Emma did not seem ready to be born at all, but that I was lucky I had my c-section when I did as my uterus was in a sad state. He also thought there may be damage to my urinary system (I forget the name of the tubes...from the kidneys to bladder? Ureters??). He also put a drain in my wound due to all that had been done, I was bleeding a fair bit. I lost an estimated 600ml during surgery and a further 500ml into the drain in the next 24 hours. I was given both morphine and some tramadol as I was leaving theatre which put me in a buoyant, dopey mood. I was alternating between being sad about not touching my baby or really knowing what she looked like, and feeling giggly and silly from the drugs. I was so out of it. Mat was in the SCBU with baby, and told them I had decided to call her Emma. He took a couple of little videos of her and a picture on my phone. She had the CPAP thing on her head. He brought my phone back for me to see her but I felt weird. Didn't seem like she was my baby. Because of the pain killers my memories of what happened next are a bit fuzzy. I think I was wheeled straight from recovery to the SCBU to visit with Emma, I don't think I went to the ward first. She was hooked up to lots of stuff and looked cute and chubby, but I distant and sad and empty. They explained that if she was still on CPAP after so many hours that she would need a chest X-ray and to also be started on antibiotics that were given every so many hours. She was also having low blood sugar issues. I hand expressed colostrum for her once I got to my room. Mathew went home to be with our other kids. I felt really good about sending off 3ml of colostrum to Emma, apparently that was a good amount! The rest of the day dragged on an on, midwives came to update me on Emma every so often. I kept expressing colostrum by hand. Emma was still needing the CPAP and had the chest X-ray and was started on some nasty sounding antibiotics. Every time they gave her a dose, they had to do a heel prick to see if her body had processed the last dose. She had a cannula in one hand, a tube down her throat and just looked so terrible to me. In the early evening they wheeled my bed in and I lay next to her with my hand on her chest for a good hour or so and it was wonderful. About 9pm one of the SCBU staff came into my room with a massive grin and said "guess who got angry and tried to rip her CPAP off? Come and feed your baby!" My god was I thrilled to bits! I had to wait for an orderly to wheel my bed over and I was so impatient. When I got there she was crying and thrashing around and I was so happy to see it. No CPAP and oxygen was at 100%, yay! She was still hooked up to a few things so it was awkward, but I nursed her and she was brilliant. I fed her for a good 2 hours. She was so enthusiastic and I had been so worried she would refuse to breastfeed but she loved it. She slept on me nursing on and off and we really bonded. I won't go into too much of the rest of the stay, but things went well and eventually she was rooming in with me. My drain was removed, my catheter was in for THREE days to keep pressure from a full bladder off my uterus, I got out of bed and was mobilising really well. I recovered in record time and felt amazing physically considering all that happened. I had an ultrasound the day after surgery to check my urinary system and all looked good. Emma was fine too. We went home on Sunday morning, so on day 4. It was quite an overwhelming experience, but I'm just so happy she's ok and that's all that matters. She's a beautiful, wonderful wee baby, she's such a joy. She was 3.4kg (7lbs 8oz) and 47.5cm long. Here is Emma now at 3.5 months!