May is Postpartum Depression month. To bring awareness to this very important topic I wanted share something. It has taken me a long time to admit this and to say it out loud.
I suffered from Postpartum depression. I have never actually said this out loud. I talk about the ‘dark times’ in various blog posts but I have never actually come out and said it. I felt ashamed of feeling this way. And this got me thinking. Why is it that, even though there is a lot of awareness around mental illness and postpartum depression, why do moms still feel ashamed to talk about it?
After I had Zara, I had weekly or bi weekly appointments at the doctors for the first 6 to 8 weeks. At each of those appointments, I was asked about breastfeeding, baby weight gain, how many times the baby pooped and peed. I was never asked about how I felt or how I was coping. Sure, I looked fine ( for someone functioning on 3 hours of sleep). But inside I was a ball of anxiety and fear. I kept a brave face, because I was scared of looking weak. I did not ask for help, when I needed it the most.
I went about my day for months, without acknowledging that something inside did not feel right. I never felt like harming myself or Zara. I felt a sense of hopelessness, exhaustion and loneliness. I felt like I was disappearing. I was going through the motions of day to day life, because Zara depended on me. I struggled everyday to put a smile on my face and go about my day.
I wish I had reached out for help. But that meant that I had to accept that something was wrong, and that I was not strong enough to handle this thing called motherhood. I spent majority of the first year of my baby’s life feeling like a failure. I regret that. The first year is special. I can never get it back. Postpartum depression took that from me.
If you are a mom and are feeling like something inside is broken, speak out. Ask for help. Talk about it. And if you know someone who is a new mom, please reach out. Do something for them without them asking.
I hope that this blog post will encourage moms that are suffering from postpartum depression to acknowledge and accept this is as a reality and get help. You will be stronger because of it.
Feel free to Comment, Like and Share. I would love to hear other moms speak up.