There has been so much going on and so much that I have wanted to blog about but just haven't gotten around to it.
But I'm going to hunker down - oh wait, gotta get the baby - okay NOW I'm ready to hunker down (until he starts crying again...) and tell all three of you about where I'm at these days.
Post Partum Depression.
Yep. That's me. I actually thought I had escaped it 2nd time around.
With Noah it was there. I didn't know it, but it was there. For the first 6 or so weeks of Noah's life I walked around in a perpetual state of nervousness, anxiety and paranoia. I was good at hiding it for the most part. But people close to me knew something was up. Like after the baby shower my Mom threw for me when Noah was 10 days old and at the end of it all I hid upstairs and bawled my eyes out. And then, as if by magic, the cloud was lifted and I looked back at the previous 6 or so weeks and realized, "Wow. I was SO not myself. What was up with that?"
This time the first 6 or so weeks were a dream. Jude was sweet and sleepy. He slept a lot and I was able to spend lots of time with Noah and Jamie and recup from an amazingly easy labour and birth.
And then Jamie went back to work. And I was by myself for a lot of the time. The hormones crashed and the sleep deprivation started to settle in. Big time. Noah was/is going through some sleep issues and often both boys would be up during the night. I would cry and swear in anger and desperation to sleep. And then one night I rolled over and told Jamie that I just had a thought of killing myself. And I cried some more. Because saying it out loud made it too real. And saying out loud made me realize it wasn't the first time I had thought something like this.
The next day I started talking to people. I called a counselor in my area that deals with PPD. I talked to a dear friend who is on the recovery path from depression (likely started with her second child) and some wonderful women from my church who came around me in support and love and prayer. I WANT to be a better Mommy. I WANT to feel "normal" and feel like I thought I would. I am NOT a type-A personality. I am laid back and generally relaxed. At least, I was before I had kids. I want that back.
I know I'll never be no-kids Vanessa again, and I'm totally okay with that. I love being a Mom. But I know I'm not healthy right now. And I want to be. I want to be able to cope and deal with every day stress in a "normal" way. I want to be able to feel motivation to get up and DO things (cleaning, cooking, exercising, getting OUT, visiting family and friends and having a nice, full schedule) but as it is, I find myself very stressed out if there is too much on my plate, obligations to fulfill, expectations to measure up to and it's not a fun place to be, quite frankly.
PPD is interesting in that it's not what I thought "depression" was/is. I thought if I was depressed I would be crying ALL the time (not just sometimes). I thought I would be moping around and never smiling. But that's not the case.
I have good days. Full of joy. Full of laughter. But I also have hard days. Days that are hard but shouldn't necessarily be hard. I don't cope well with increased amounts of stress and I especially don't cope well with a severe lack of sleep. I have dark moments and moments where I KNOW that this is not who I am. It's not who I want to keep being.
I want to smile more.
I want to laugh more.
I want to host big parties and not feel completely depleted of any and all energy at the end of it.
I want to sleep more. :D
I want to be more me.
I want the sunshine to outweigh the darkness.
**If you or anyone you know is dealing with PPD or any form of depression, please reach out. There are so many resources and organizations that offer help and information. Please say something. What's the worst that can happen?**