Snips and Stitches You May Experience During Labourby Leah Dealy
Ahh childbirth, the miracle of life, the light at the end of the tunnel... quite literally when your legs are strapped in stirrups, under the spotlight whilst a medical professional stitches up what is left of your ladyhood! Or as I like to refer to it after three kids and a bunch of stitches - Frankenstein minge!
See this is what nobody speaks about, they’ll tell you about the first time you hold your beautiful baby and that rush of love, but sometimes; if you're one of the unlucky ones (like myself) that blissful moment only lasts 10 minutes until your back on the gas and air feeling the tug and pulls off the stitches whilst hoping with all you have that they do a good job!
I was unfortunate enough to need an episiotomy with my first, luckily I had already an epidural which works wonders for the pain but doesn’t stop you from hearing the *SNIP* ooft; even the memory of it makes my legs cross! But that’s just the start, that one snip leads on to a week of negotiating a new way of crawling in and out of bed to limit the contact time between bed and undercarriage!
It’s cool and time-limited baths so your dissolvable stitches and tender area don’t suffer too much. And let’s not forget the odd midwife stitch check! Mine caught me
Unaware just a few days after coming home with my firstborn. It started with the usual chat, how are you doing? how are they feeding? shall we check your stitches? In my head I’m thinking please no! Five minutes later I’m lying on the couch, fanny out, curtains open! Hoping and praying in that moment the neighbours don’t decide to glance over!
But it’s obviously very easily forgotten about because 16 months later, I’m back on the labour ward!
Begging the midwife to keep the scissors to herself! Worried my scar would rip open during the delivery! I’m on edge.
But my son storms into the world with not a scissor or instrument in sight *yay*
BUT... remember the epidural I told you about? Well, it may have been brilliant for the pain but it also prevents you from being able to feel anything whilst pushing; which meant I never knew I was pushing! How would I? The gas and air were working wonders! I was on cloud 9. Until 3 pushes later I speak out “I think I’m pushing” minutes later my baby was out.
Sounds good, but what sometimes happens when your baby’s head is born too quickly and isn’t controlled slowly out is that you graze or you tear. I did both.
When I tell you that pain is WORSE than an episiotomy! Ouch.
Maybe it was just the placement of it, but going for a wee was agony! Imagine rubbing your vagina on a cactus and then rinsing it with acid! That was the pain.
Having a wee was agony. They tell you to pour a jug of water down yourself at the same time to ease it! So there you are, it’s three o’clock in the morning and your baby is crying for a feed! You’ve nipped to the bathroom for a quick piddle before remembering what you're about to endure! You're stood at the sink nearly wetting yourself trying to regulate the temperature of the water in the jug! Not hot water but not ice cold! And then.... it doesn’t work! It stings anyway.
So you start learning how to improvise, different leaning positions, holding tissue over where it hurts and applying a little pressure, or if you feeling adventurous (and you find the time) running a shallow bath and wee’ing in that! You’ll try anything.
Luckily with my third child, all stitches were internal so third time lucky for me.
I’m hoping none of you have to go through the same but some might. So here’s your warning. Don’t be afraid to ask for pain relief if you need it! More than likely you will be prescribed something anyway.
What works for some may not work for others so find out what works for you. Just get past those first few days and it’ll get better I promise.
Oh and if you're one of the unlucky ones - welcome to the Frankenstein crew.