Singer Maren Morris gave birth to her son, Hayes Andrew, just four months ago. I say “just” because poor Maren has already been targeted by the Meddling Mom Mafia when she posted an adorable photo with her baby. Even though that experience affected what Maren will post, she is opening up about his birth. Maren had an unintended Caesarean Section after it seemed a vaginal birth wasn’t possible. Because she hadn’t expected a C-Section, she’d not read anything about the procedure or its recovery, something she now regrets. Maren wishes more people would talk about C-Sections so the recovery won’t come as such a shock.
Maren Morris is remembering both the physical and emotional difficulties following her “unintended” cesarean section to deliver son Hayes Andrew, now 4 months old.
In a new video for Little Spoon’s Is This Normal surrounding her support for the Black Women’s Health Imperative, the new mom, 30, reveals that since she was “not planning for a c-section,” she “didn’t read up on” the procedure beforehand and now wishes she had.
“I labored for 30 hours, wanted to do it naturally, but I stopped having contractions and it was just time to call it and get him out safely,” says Morris. “So I just wish I had done a better job at preparing myself for the shock of a c-section, because the postpartum of a c-section is so brutal.”
For example, the country star’s husband Ryan Hurd “would have to lift [her] out of bed” before she could do so safely herself. “You can’t use any of your abdominal muscles,” she says. “I had to army crawl to get out of bed to use the bathroom in the middle of the night.”
“And you’re also wanting to hold your baby and breastfeed and pump and all this other s—, so that was crazy,” the “My Church” singer adds.
Morris recalls feeling “really isolated” and “really lonely” following her son’s birth, because she just didn’t hear stories about c-sections the way she would’ve hoped to before experiencing one herself.
“I wish people talked more about their c-section stories because I felt, like a lot of mothers, really isolated, really lonely, right after because it was this unexpected major surgery I ended up getting,” she explains.
The difference between an emergency C-Section, an unintended C and a scheduled C has to do with the state of the fetus. An emergency C means the baby is in distress and the C is the best way to save the baby’s life. An unintended means the baby is okay, but something is preventing it from coming out and will eventually become distressed… or maybe just live inside you for the rest of its life (kidding!). A scheduled C is the planned method of birth, often because of a prior difficultly giving birth. My friend, who had had an emergency with her first and a scheduled with her second, asked how I would handle it if I had to have a C-Section at the last minute. I swore I wouldn’t need a C, but hypothesized I wouldn’t care. I was wrong on the first count and right on the second. My first C was unintended and my second was scheduled. I did not have the physical issues that Maren discussed. The recovery with my second was a little more painful because the hospital couldn’t agree on a pain killer for me so I ended up with just Tylenol for the whole postpartum. The oddest part is when the incisions start itching because they’re healing. The exterior one feels normal but the incision on your uterus itches too and its strange having an embedded itch you can’t reach. However, immediately following my first C, I, too, had no idea what to expect and the morphine withdrawal was terrible. And to Maren’s point about being prepared, when I had my second child, I was ready for it and it was much less of a problem for me.
I do know that there is a section of the Meddling Mom Mafia that treats women who have had C-Sections as if they haven’t properly given birth. There are support groups for women who have Cs and part of that deals with this perception. As you know I can’t understand any kind of mom shaming, let alone the idea of harassing a woman who made a medical decision based on the health of her baby. Take care of yourself, take care of your baby, anyone saying anything different than that needs to take a seat.
I’m glad Maren brought this up because we need to view C-Sections as part of the birthing process. Any kind of isolation during motherhood is hard, especially so the first time around. And doubly so if you give birth during a pandemic. I hope Maren’s comments help other expectant moms. The only parsing I will do of Maren’s statement is I was corrected when I said “normal” birth instead of vaginal birth because the whole idea is to normalize the safest option and not give the stigma of only one way being normal or right. That language never bothered me, but I understood their argument so I made the change.
Photo credit: Instagram and WENN/Avalon