I have so much on my heart, but this cloud of sadness and anxiety leaves me in a state of inertia. Wanting to speak, but sitting silent.
My 5th baby is here, and 24 days after I brought her into the world, I’m finally fully bonding with her and feeling some of the cloud lift.
My pregnancy was hard and not very enjoyable. Typically I love being pregnant. So, I waited for her birth.
Her birth came on fast and fierce. She was my fastest labor by far, and I couldn’t shake this feeling of being unprepared. I couldn’t enter into a “birth space” state of mind. My desire was just to get it over with.
Her birth came days after my aunt died suddenly, so I met life and death in the same week. Her first outing was to a funeral.
I didn’t have much of a break before I had no choice but to dive back into life with the kids, and responsibilities.
I usually have at least a few days to enjoy the “cocoon” of just baby, husband and I.
So, I felt the depression sneak up on me. The anxiety started to come over me. I wanted to crawl into bed, put the covers over my head, and leave the world.
Of course, with 5 children this was impossible. Not only that, but with my experience of depression, I knew hiding would only sink me deeper.
Instead of hiding, I reached out. I took a friend’s advice to have skin to skin time with the baby. I took the babies first bath with her. She LOVED the bath! She was so calm and peaceful. It felt like a return to the womb. I drank her in, enjoyed her, focused on her alone. It was then that I was able to open my heart more fully and get to know her.
I also took the advice of many wise women friends who told me to relax, be gentle to myself, and not stress over the laundry or dishes. I had JUST given birth, they reminded me. This helped me to rebuke the thoughts of “you’re a failure” ringing in my head.
Now we are nearing one month post partum and I am connected with my baby girl, and the emotional cloud to getting brighter and lighter every day.
I’m thankful I have learned to always SAY SOMETHING before getting truly depressed. This has saved me from a lot of suffering.
Please reach out if you don’t feel well. Come out of hiding and say something!