Today we have a guest post by my blogging friend Amaris from Crumbs & Glamour on postpartum depression and anxiety. Unfortunately, a lot of new mothers suffer from this but many don´t talk about. Check out Amaris´ post and know that you´re not alone!
Wake up, can’t breathe.
Am I going to have a panic attack?
Start counting. Start breathing. Focused breaths.
Inhale slowly… 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
Exhale painfully… 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
Repeat. Repeat. Repeat… until the heart feels lighter.
Morning anxieties. I didn’t ask for this.
Morning depression won’t lift.
Please God, just lift the cloud.
My oldest child, Drew, is nearly 2 and half, so to be certain, that’s how long I’ve been dealing with Postpartum Depression and Anxiety (PPD&A).
Truthfully, I think I’ve been depressed since I found out I was pregnant with him, but I know FOR SURE I’ve been dealing with PPD&A since he was born.
I had a little bit of a break when I became pregnant with Reese, but I was pregnant… soooo, my hormones and emotions were pretty crazy then, too.
Before you continue reading, let me make something clear:
I love my children, I love my life… I am not complaining. I’m being RAW. I’m being real. Real life, friends, can be difficult. So, I’m going to be me. I’m going to be raw. And sometimes it may look messy.
And through it all, God is going to be glorified, because clearly it’s not me that’s keeping my life together.
Let’s start from the beginning:
Naturally, I’m an extrovert. I’m fun-loving, happy, spontaneous, free-spirited, crazy, wild, fearless, definitely shameless, blunt, politically incorrect, vocal, etc. etc… I am me.
Depression and anxiety weren’t things that I knew.
Did I know death? Yes.
Did I know divorce? Yes.
Did I know insecurity? Yes.
But I didn’t know depression, severe sadness, indifference, anxiety, or things that go with depression or anxiety.
So, coming from my background, when PPD&A hit, I had no idea what I was dealing with. To be as real as I can, I thought I was in some horrible sin and that God hated me.
Typical PPD only lasts a couple months. That has not been the case with me. I’ve been dealing with long-term postpartum depression and anxiety. So, after Andrew was born, I dealt with it for 11 months… Until I got pregnant with my second.
My journal entries, for practically a year, were “Why God are you so far?” “Do you care for me?” “Are you here for me?” “Do you love me?”
But again, I didn’t know that there was anything the matter… so life just continued on, as I felt like I was falling apart on the inside.
When I became pregnant with Reese, that cloud was lifted. Kinda.
I wasn’t necessarily depressed, but I continued to deal with anxiety, fear, control, intense hormones, etc…
I delivered my beautiful baby girl and was soaring with happy feelings.
By 5 weeks postpartum, I was severely depressed.
Worse than what I experienced after my firsts delivery. I found myself crying for no reason, gloomy, withdrawn, didn’t want to be around anyone, and considering suicide. It felt like hell.
I finally began to put the pieces together and noticed it was very similar to what I had experienced after my first pregnancy. I came to the conclusion that it was postpartum depression.
I went to my doctor and told her I needed help, I told her I would prefer a natural vitamin or supplement (if there was something)… but if it didn’t work, I was prepared to go on an antidepressant.
Postpartum depression and anxiety, for me, feels like everything is cloudy and dark.
There is unexplainable sadness and guilt. Every task seems a million times harder. It’s hard to motivate myself and go anywhere. Some days I wake up in the middle of the night with unexplainable anxiety- so severe I’m on the verge of vomiting.
Like I’m a boat that has a leak in it; I’m constantly having to use my energy to stop the leak and stay afloat. Because of that, I have little to no energy for other things.
Fast forward to today:
My doctor did recommend natural supplements, and they work great for me.
I take two herbal supplements from Nature’s Sunshine (if you want to know what they are, shoot me a message), they help a lottttt.
But to have a raw moment with you- life is still not perfect.
I still have my days (my weeks) that are cloudier and not super happy.
Some days I can’t get much done. That’s okay.
Some days the dishes will pile up. That’s okay.
Some months I miss the gym because I’m just too tired or overwhelmed. And, it’s okay that I don’t go.
My point is this: sometimes you just have to have grace with yourself.
Be patient with yourself, nothing in nature blooms all year.
There is a season for everything.
And when life is sweet, say thank you and learn to celebrate.
But if life is dark, say thank you and grow.
Everything will be okay.
We’ll all be okay.
I’m Amaris (rhymes with glamorous)! I’m from Orlando FL, and fully living life. I’m owner and writer at Crumbs and Glamour Blog. Blissfully married <3 Momma of two little chubbers. Coffee and wine enthusiast (really anything I can sip through a straw). Grace saved. Passionate friend. A sucker for laughter, and anything with glitter!