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Entries in Flap of Skin (5)

Monday
Apr302012

Cesarean Scar: Jess

I hide her.  Deep beneath an apron of fat I wear to protect her and her trauma I hide what remains of my abdominal yoni.  She was used once and then had her lips sewn tightly shut.  When I peek at her, she shows her left side, healing and coping as best she can.  But her right side is sunk deep, sour and pissed off.  She throws out adhesions to my uterus, my ovary, to any part of me that is woman and pulls them to her, trying to get me to listen.  Whenever my right ovary bursts out an egg, my scar makes her scream in pain, as if saying, “No!  Do not do anything that will get me cut again!” 

When I touch her she winces.  I massage her and I feel her pain burning away, even now 6 years later.  She is tight, holding together, afraid of letting all she has stored spill out.

Only my firstborn was born through my belly.  For him, I went into the hospital unprepared for the battle I never knew awaited me.  For my second birth, I went in armed to the teeth with knowledge, both of an obstetric and soul nature.  I emerged a Birth Warrior, triumphant.  A Victory Birth After Cesarean.  Last August I went into the fray once more and again dug deep and blissfully birthed my first daughter.

And still, my scar simmers and stews.  Still so furious, hidden, and alone.

 

Monday
Apr302012

Cesarean Scar: Katie

 

My scar is never visible to me and is almost completly faded. My last cesarean was almost four years ago.  I have a flap of skin from the 1st cesarean that covers it only to see if I look at it in the mirror.  The physical scar doesn't bother me, I can touch it and look at it with no problems.  It's the emotional scar that weighs heavy on my heart. 

The second picture of me and my second son I can't bear to look at without crying.  I have oxygen on because I was throwing up from the spinal. I can hardly see him because I was laying flat and not able to move my arms without them getting heavy and falling on me. I had to have help holding him, it wasn't a natural process.  I can say though at least I have pictures. My first delivery wouldn't allow a camera into the OR so we have no pictures of his first cry, his weight check or anything else in those first moments.

Even though those emotional scars hurt I am so happy to be who I am today because of them.  I would have never been an ICAN Leader had this not happened and never been able to teach so many women about birth and the amazing process it CAN be! Never would have been so happy to have a baby vaginally...naturally, I will never take that for granted. 

My first picture is of my scar and of my pregnant belly too, this baby will be brought up to Mama by Mama and not by surgical staff or a doctor.

Monday
Apr302012

Cesarean Scar: Mandy Renfro

 

My c-section scar hurts. It itches, sweats in the hot summer months, and is numb. It even feels this weird, uncomfortable, pressure feeling when anything, even my husband’s loving caresses touch it.  The weird feelings aren’t limited to the scar itself, but the area below as well.

My stomach has this flap- pooch thing that will never go away.  It is a horrifying lump that rears its ugliness when I wear stretchy pants, some skirts, and a swimsuit. I fear I will always have to wear a girdle of sorts to smooth everything out.  I don’t like my husband to look at my body, I can’t even shave there completely.

My scar says a lot of things to me when I look at it.  It reminds me that my doctors didn’t even give me an option of a VBAC the second time.  It reminds me that I didn’t get to see my oldest son until he was 2 hours old, and that I didn’t get to see my second one until I threw a fit; I didn’t get to see him until he was hours old, I only got to see him those 15 minutes.  It reminds me how I wasn’t allowed out of bed for 24 hours.  My youngest son was in the NICU, and I didn’t get to hold my baby and kiss him until 28 hours after his birth.  And even then, I was in so much pain. It HURT me, both times, to cuddle my sons, to be their momma.  I kissed their foreheads through tears of pain.

Both times, my incision became infected and would not close.  Thus, putting me through weeks more of pain, doctor’s visits, and medications.  The scar says to me, when I look at it … “you wouldn’t have me if you tried harder the first time, you didn’t fight hard enough for your second birth.”  It reminds me that I never got to FEEL my sons come into this world. I did not witness them physically entering the world.  I didn’t get to see their naked, new bodies.  I met both of my sons when they were wrapped in blankets with knit caps on.

When I touch it, it says “that feels weird”. But also, some different feeling comes over me. Connection. This … thing on my body, thick and bumpy, itchy and numb… will always be with me.  The way the most beautiful people came into my life, was through it.  When they’re grown and gone with families of their own, I will still have my scar.  The sense of touch triggers such an emotional response from me.

I can lose the extra pounds from pregnancy and I don’t have many stretch marks, but my body will always, ALWAYS have a reminder of my pregnancies with my boys.

It isn’t the prettiest, most comfortable thing, but it is important, a part of my history, a part of me, a part of them, a part of us.

Monday
Apr302012

Cesarean Scar: L.

 

To be honest, I can't see my scar. It is covered by a flap of skin that I can't get rid of due to having a c-section (unless I can afford plastic surgery, that is) I had to hold the flap back even to take this picture. When I look at this picture, I see something that shouldn't be there. I see the evidence of a failure to wait c-section. I see a doctor who tried to convince me that I could never birth a baby vaginally due to a *small pelvis* even though she was very wrong. I see everything that went wrong during my first birth.

It says, it is numb and hypersensitive all at the same time. On occasion, it still hurts even though it's been over 5yrs. It is bumpy and uneven and thick as my pinkie finger. It is indented in some places and bulges in others. It says, it is ugly. 

Monday
Apr302012

Cesarean Scar: Nastassja H.

 

When I look at my scar it says, "Don't look". It hides under a flap of skin that no diet or exercise will rid me of. I glance past it quickly, it's hidden, why think of it? Why look at it? Why think of how my body will never, ever be the same there? My body has changed in many, many ways in the last few years. I have other scars. Scores of stretch marks, flab that my bony teenage self never dreamed she would bear. I drink it all in easily, before the mirror. I don't spend any inordinate amount of time wondering what others will think when they see it. If they will be disgusted. Stretch marks are normal. Having your appendix out isn't too weird. Heck, that appendectomy scar is kind of cool! Want to see?

But my scar hides. Even in a skimpy swimsuit, it's invisible. Even naked, I have to pull up my belly to see it. And that makes it easier, not having to look at it all the time. I can almost pretend it's just a fold of fat.

It says that I should have done something different. It says that knowledge is not enough to save you. It says that acting on knowledge is hard, so hard, when you are alone, and everyone is telling you it's ok, it's not a big deal, sometimes it happens this way, you tried it all, it's time to let THEM try. Time to hand over the reins of your body to the experts. They know the buttons to push. They can make it work.

And I believed them.

When I touch my scar it yells "DON'T TOUCH!". I cringe and grimace. My muscles tense. Sometimes touches hurt. Sometimes they don't. It has been years, and my subconscious says that it's still not healed. "Don't touch! Be careful! You just don't know what will happen if you press here, or push there. It may hurt!"

The worst part is I've proven to my scar that it's fine. I've carried another healthy, beautiful child, in that scarred uterus. I pushed him into this world with minimal fuss and to-do. Working as intended! Fully functional!

But oh so fragile. Please don't touch. Will my scar ever believe it has healed?