I’ve probably written this post a million times and a million times more erased it. Or so it felt. Month after month, I’d come back and each time, drew a blank. I simply could not express the emotions I felt into words. At first, I felt as though it was a bit too personal. You would think that since I shared so openly about my depression during my pregnancy that this would come easy but it’s probably been the hardest post to write. It’s been nearly 7 months since my first attempt but today of all days, I felt compelled to open up. Tomorrow marks a new day, a fresh start, a new year… what better way than to let go all of things that I’ve bottled up inside. So here it goes…
I‘ve been was depressed. I guess you can say this was some sort of postpartum depression, but I’ve been through this before with my first & the triggers or warning signs were much different this time. It didn’t hit me until much later on and when it did, it felt like I was drowning. Six weeks after having King, I went straight back to work. Postpartum depression is a scary and lonely thing to experience and I figured if I kept busy, continued doing the things I love that I’d be okay. And I really thought I was, okay. I was so enveloped with my career that I really didn’t have much time to feel anything really.
Here’s what I thought: The first few months since having King were wonderful. I was amazed at how quickly he’d hit all of his milestones, especially since he was a preemie. & to see his older brothers connect with him brought me so much joy. Things ran like clockwork in my home… I had a system and it worked. Wake up every 2-3 hours with King, Feed Him, Change Him, Pump Milk, Repeat. Add in the occasional bath, playtime and shower for me. While at work, I’d pump every two hours to keep my supply up and loved that everyone was so supportive. My freezer stash was something I was so proud of. I thought, I could do this for a whole year. It allowed me to work, have some me time and sneak in a nap or two while the bf took care of King. Things were going just as planned. I was in complete denial. Life wasn’t as perfect as it seemed.
In fact, I was in a very dark place and quite frankly very sad. My boyfriend and I fought every other day and I pretty much stayed in my bubble. My room. I cried daily for a good 7 months and still… did not think much of it. Things really hit me after the 5-6 month mark. King didn’t want me to breastfeed him anymore. This brought all of my emotions to light. Of course it made sense because when you’re bottle feeding and breastfeeding at the same time, the bottle kinda wins. Less effort, instant gratification for him. Totally get it. When he finally stopped latching on to me, I hit my lowest point. I would cry just thinking about it… didn’t matter where I was. & sometimes, it still makes me sad. I felt as though I failed him.
Eventually, I became angry and of course, took it all out my boyfriend. I’m surprised he’s put up with me to be honest. I was just upset all of the time… so i did what I do best, drown myself in more work. I would go 14, 15, even up to 18 days straight working and take maybe 1 or 2 days off. I missed out on the entire summer with my kids because I could not say no to work. It was my escape from feeling like I’m just a mom. I’m more than a mom, I’m a ‘Super Mom’. I’ve heard people call me this so many times that I guess I had to live up to the title. I could do it all! Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could stop living in a world full of titles?
Until a few friends of mine mentioned that I was not quite myself, I was still clueless. I was very negative. Everything bothered me. ‘I hate people‘ was my motto for 2017. I was so overwhelmed, so overworked and completely drained of life. I hated my life. I kept thinking if there was a reset button, how could I start this all over again? Would I have chosen a different career path? Would I be with someone else? Would I not have kids? And then I thought… wow, I must be the worst person ever to regret having my kids? Just let me crawl into a hole and die already. I felt really alone with my emotions. I felt alone in general. There was no one to talk to, no one to relate with, no one who could possibly understand what I was going through. Until I had a nervous breakdown.
This wasn’t that long ago but it opened my eyes to a lot. My best friend told me that, I haven’t been happy for a long long time. And she was right. Something was off and she highly recommended that I talked to someone. I was embarrassed which is why it’s probably taken me forever to write this. I mean, I’m the one who always has her shit pulled together… I was struggling to get out of bed everyday, running on little to no sleep, consistently late for everything, forgetting deadlines, blog posts, birthdays, hating life. This was not me. And I needed help. I opened up to friends, other moms and my boyfriend.
Being a Mom is hard but I wear this role proudly. So I put on my cape and take it one day at a time. I’m not 100%, but I feel better today than I did yesterday and I know tomorrow will be even better. If you’re struggling, don’t ever think you’re alone. It’s okay to ask for help. It’s okay to open up. It’s okay to feel what you’re feeling because chances are, someone has gone through it too. Trust and believe that there will be better days. Surround yourself with people and things that you love. More importantly talk about it.
My hope for the new year is that I find my complete and whole self. A stronger, happier and healthier me.