I recently became an aunt again. Sweet joy and massive congratulations. Both mother and baby are well…but it was not an easy birth….you might have guessed that given the title of this blog.
The new and beautiful addition to our family was born by c section. This is not particularly rare in this day and age but it is certainly not the norm. What is more ‘abnormal’ is that were it not for the cesarean as a procedure our immediate family would be down by, almost certainly, 8.
My middle sister had 2 emergency c sections, I had 2 emergency c sections and now my little sis can join the club. It’s a weird club, instead of a membership badge you get a scar. Having babies in this family sucks. My poor parents. After the news of this latest section I began to ponder the history of the c section.
Turns out it is quite interesting and not at all completely known. The stand out pieces of information include: reported instances from Uganda in 1879, a man using banana wine and tree roots medicinally to perform a successful section (the observer noted this procedure must have been carried out for ‘a long time’, as it was so well developed), the first successful British c section was carried out by a woman pretending to be a man working in the British army in South Africa (go James Miranda Stuart Barry) and that when anaesthetic was developed the English church didn’t want it used as women should suffer through childbirth because of what Eve did!
Obviously things have got better and most people still manage to have babies through their vaginas, but please consider this my tribute to the cesarean and the people who have learnt how to perform them. Hurrah. Myself and my sisters are tremendously grateful.