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My PostPartum Depression Story Part II

Hey, Welcome back to the final part of a difficult time I went through, that a lot of women are embarrassed to speak on, due to the lack of education surrounding these topics.


After my friends left that day, I sat my husband down and told him that I was "unhappy" and did not really know why. For my husband, this meant I was unhappy with him, which was not the case. I loved him and was not affected by our marriage in any way; however I did blame him for not understanding my frustrations. I just wanted him to make me feel better, but at the same time there was nothing he could actually do besides just being there for me and being a supportive father. I could not explain my anger, frustration, disappointment and all sorts of other feelings I was sorting through. I decided to google "struggling as a new mom" and all sorts of different blogs and medical sites came up talking about Post Partum Depression, and some even listed different symptoms which for the sake of any mother who may be struggling and doesn't know why, I will list some of them below:

-Anxiety

-Mood Swings

-Trouble bonding with your baby

-Social Withdrawal

-Loss of appetite

-Insomnia (even when baby is sleeping)

-Extreme fatigue

-Cognitive issues: forgetfulness, difficulty learning new things

-Negative emotions

-Self loathing

-Fears


I then decided I needed to work through this, because I was so tired of trudging through my days as a mother and failing to bond with my son. Fortunately, since Ano was a preemie baby, the NICU at the IWK came with many services such as Social Workers you could meet with weekly, parent support groups that met weekly and even therapists, if requested. I started with the parent support groups. At first I just sat there quietly listening to other mothers speak and wonder how they could be brave enough to even speak about their struggles. I was so embarrassed that I felt this way, and felt like I was failing at this whole motherhood thing. One day, I remember it clearly, a mom spoke about how she had not had sleep in months, and I just remember saying "girl tell me about it..." and then kept going. I spoke for almost 15 mins in between gasps of sobs, and everyone listening intently. When I was done, I felt like I had finally been honest about my struggles and even though I was not automatically healed, I had some hope that I could work through it.


I also started seeing the social workers weekly, and at one point in our sessions I realized another reason I had fallen into this depression because I did not have my mother. Being in a foreign country is hard, but being in a foreign country as a new mother, without the support of our amazing mothers was too much for me, and I had tried to bring my mother here but she had been denied 3 times for a visa, which really broke my heart.


To say it took a while for me to finally feel like me again is an understatement. I don't remember exactly how, but I remember when I felt like I was ok. It was the day Ano started walking. He was a year and a half and I remember those first steps he took meant the world to me! I was genuinely happy. I had missed so many of his milestones but this one I was there for! I took a video and everything. I always say I am truly grateful that my husband Nash was able to capture many of the key moments of Ano's life so I am lucky enough to re watch them now.


In conclusion, all I can say to anyone who has ever felt any of the feelings listed above, please speak up about it to family, friends or even medical professionals. Research what resources are available in your local area to assist you, and also reach out to other women who can relate to your struggles. Do not feel bad about your struggles, as this is quite common amongst women. You can check out https://www.postpartumdepression.org/resources/statistics/ for more information.




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