Hi there Coll, best of luck with the upcoming birth of your baby - believe me, it willl blow your mind!!
I had a caesarian in March this year at 37 weeks and 6 days. Having some high blood pressure, family history of pre-eclampsia, a large baby and being a large baby at birth myself, it was the safest option for us both.
The thing that surprised me the most was how quickly it all happened. Once in the surgery I had the spinal inserted (ouch!), I was laid down on the table, the screen went up and Stella was born about 10mins later. She was brought around to us and we cuddled her while I was stitched back together (took about 45 mins).
I went into recovery and was meant to only be there for about an hour but unfortunately was there for 6 hours :( I was quite unwell, not sure why, I think it was a combination of blood pressure issues/drugs reactions/diabetes etc.
Stella was in great shape, needing just a quick visit to the nursery for a check up - her blood sugar was only slightly low - they gave her 40mls of formula which brought it back up to normal and then she and my hubby relaxed in our room while waiting for me to return. She didn't need any special care at all, didn't get jaundiced or anything. I was thinking that I would be fine and she would be sick, but it was the other way around!! She weighed in at 9lb 12.5 oz or 4430 grams.
My initial days after the surgery were a bit hard as I kept passing out every time I sat up - once again, not sure why, could have been a blood pressure thing once again. But after 4 days I was up on my feet again.
I was wisely recommended to take the pain relief medication regularly which helped me feel more comfortable.
I was surprised how unstable and weak I felt in my stomach muscles - moving around in bed was quite difficult. I felt quite incapcitated. The physio visited me while in hospital and gave me some exercises to do to help strengthen them.
Once I got home I didn't drive for about 6 weeks - I was advised to start driving again once I felt strong enough to do an emergency brake and be able to turn around to look over both shoulders.
I felt a lot of numbness in the skin over my lower stomach and the skin was ULTRA sensitive - I couldn't even touch it to rub cream into it for weeks.
Over time I felt stronger, in my stomach, the things that hurt the most were coughing and sneezing.
Now, 6 months later I feel I have recovered really well (my scar is starting to fade) and I look forward to doing it all again with bubs number 2 sometime in the near future!
Please remember, this is only an account of my own experiences - I have many friends who have had caesarians (some multiple caesarians), and of course they all have their own unique story to tell :)
Keep us posted on your progress - good luck with everything