Unlike my first birthing experience, this one was a little bit stress-free. I knew what was going to happen and was prepared for the worst.
My little Michaela was born via scheduled c-section. I checked in at the hospital a day before the actual surgery. All the monitoring and preparations were done a day before. I am also very lucky to have good friends who worked at the hospital and were very helpful with the preparations. The moral support and reassurances made a lot of difference in the whole experience.
I couldn’t help but shed off tears when I heard her first cry. This was an experience that I never had with Jakub. Back when I had him, I had general anesthesia and was completely knocked out. This time, the surgery took a little more than 45mins. The anesthesiologist and my husband talked to me through the whole process and that alone helped a lot.
Afterwhich, I was transferred to the ICU for a day to aid in recovery.
The actual surgery was completely painless except for some sensations of pressure here and there. However, the recovery was painful. I had to ask the nurse for pain reliever shots and just slept it off.
I am not sure if it is common practice here in Czech, but it seemed like breastfeeding is almost a given. While in the ICU, my daughter was brought to me twice and I was encouraged to breastfeed. I was too weak to do anything fruitful, so all those attempts were unsuccessful. The nurses were understanding and they continued to encourage me to always give it a try.
The next day, I was asked to stand and take a shower. I was then transferred to a regular room where I had my daughter room in with me. As with the previous attempts, there was again the push to breastfeed. The nurses never even broached the topic of feeding formula to my newborn. It was as if every mother is expected to breastfeed. And so I did. And guess what? It all paid off. I am proud to say that my daughter was completely breastfed from the day she was born. Again, another experience that I never had with Jakub.
There were only 2 things that I didn’t like about this experience: 1) the hospital parking arrangements and; 2) the cleanliness of the bathrooms. The Kolin hospital probably has one of the worst parking arrangements that I’ve seen here in CZ. There is no designated parking for patients (people park on the streets) and only 3 parking spaces for newborn pick-ups.
Another con is the cleanliness of the bathrooms in the hospital. The building is quite old and has seen better days. Although some parts have already undergone some extensive renovation, others have remained old and untouched. Perhaps one aspect that I really didn’t like was the way the bathrooms were kept. There were a few traces of mold on the tiles and shower curtains. I may be overacting, but I thought it should have been better. Bathroom cleanliness is one of my pet peeves.
However, despite these 2 technical negatives, I was quite satisfied with the service that I was accorded. I’ve heard horror stories about impolite nurses at this hospital, but I didn’t meet a single nurse who was rude to me. The doctors themselves were also very competent and professional. These made a whole lot of difference in the whole experience and somehow made those technical negatives better.
Right now, we are already back home and I am slowly trying to get to know my daughter. Jakub is very excited in his new role as a big brother and I am lucky to have my husband and mother-in-law stay with me for 3 weeks until I regain my strength back. I’ve had a series of sleepless nights but otherwise happy to be home and spend time with my new daughter and loved ones.