So, awhile back I wrote a post about how I felt like I was failing at my life--about how I needed help.
(Read about that here)
Last year in August, I went in to my doctor to discuss the possibility that I had Postpartum Depression. It was not something that I discussed with anyone other than my husband, my mother, and my doctor. I was embarrassed. Good grief, how many new moms were able to handle their new baby and new lives and not need MEDICATION. How many moms were bring home baby #4 and cruising through their life. They were able to have it together, why WHY couldnt I?
I was not depressed in the sense of I couldnt get out of bed, or I stayed in my pajamas all day (which I dont find all that wrong anyway!). I stayed on top of all our doctor appointments for Nash and me. I still had high blood pressure and was seeing a cardiologist. Nash was is his pediatricians office more times than I could count. We also were seeing a gastrointestinal specialist, his PA, a neurologist, and even had an emergency visit to the hospital.
All of that time, I was only sleeping about 4 hours at night-- and it was interrupted sleep at that. Nash didnt nap. I never got any down time--or time I wasnt having to hold my sad screaming colicky baby. My cleaning of the house, doing laundry, making meals...all of that started falling through the cracks. I was losing my mind. I felt like a bad wife and homemaker...I was angry all the time at my husband because he never ONCE reached out to help me. He slept on at night, instead of taking one feeding like I begged him to. Resentment started building up. I felt like I wasnt cut out to be a mother. This is what I wanted for my entire life and I was failing at it!
My son was sick, and I was sad and mad all the time.
My mom is the one who suggested I go talk to my doctor.
I had to take a "test" to see what kind of depression we were talking about.
He agreed that I had postpartum depression on a mild scale. He suggested an anti-depressant.
Which...made me depressed. I couldnt believe I needed a medication to handle my life.
I took that medication religiously for a year.
(the minimum time they suggest you be on a medication like that).
My life seemed to be "evening out" some...
Nash was napping at least once a day for about an hour. He was sleeping about 5 hours at a time at night. He didnt need to held 24/7. We bought a new home that had lots of room for him to explore.
I was ready to get off that medicine.
And then I got news that shook my whole world. Everything I had been living was built around a horrible, dark, scary lie. I knew I needed that medication longer.
When I finally felt like I could try going off of it (about 2 months after the devastating news), my mother didnt want me to go off the anti-depressant. She was worried about me.
I decided to go for it anyways. I went in to my doctor and we both agreed to wean off it. One month I took half doses...things seemed to be fine...nothing out of the normal really. The next month I was off it completely. For the first 2 weeks, I felt totally normal. I was back to not getting alot of sleep though. Nash was experiencing night terrors as well as having 4 canines coming through at once.
But I was feeling--okay.
The last 2 weeks have been SO up and down. I find myself feeling very down. Not as bad as it was in the beginning, but close. I feel like I'm failing at keeping all the balls in the air i'm trying to juggle. Being a good, interactive mom. Starting and promoting my new business. Keeping a tidy home. Making our meals. Keeping track of all appointments and bills. Trying to have a relationship with my husband. Embracing my new calling as laurel adviser and teaching every week with mutual every week as well. Everything has seemed to slip through my fingers at one point.
AND THE CRYING.
Oh the crying. I can read a touching story. Watch a video clip of a dog. See my son learning something new. Watch property brothers. I START CRYING AT EVERYTHING.
What is going on with me!??!
I was so confused. Apparently, there will be hormonal shifts as my body tries to adjust and go back to "normal". It could be months before I'm back to my old self. I knew that, but now I KNOW its gonna be awhile.
I have been so grateful for that little "extra help"....the one I didnt know I needed.
The one that I feared people would shame me for.
Now without it, I realize what a help it actually was. I am grateful for modern medicine and doctors who care. I'm grateful for my mom for pushing me to go talk to my doctor. I'm grateful that Nash is doing better--enough that I feel sane. And I'm grateful for my mind and body...I'm grateful that I was able to create life and to carry that sweet boy, and that i'm doing my best in being the best mother I can be. I'm grateful to know that we can overcome obstacles.
And that things are only "stigmas" if we let them be.