Leaving Postpartum Depression in 2019: A raw look into my life these past few months.
It's a weird feeling when you go from a super functioning, task-oriented person to not wanting to get out of bed. To feeling like the simplest task such as taking a shower seems overwhelming.
I'll never forget the crazy thoughts running through my head, the feeling of sadness that was clouding all my day-to-day events and the anger I felt towards people, my husband...
Rilee May was born on July 8th this year and it felt like magic...is that weird? I was just so excited (and nervous) to bring her into this world. We had way too many hair bows, her brothers were obsessed with filling her crib with stuffed animals, and her Dad was diligently trying to get our house remodel finished so that we could bring our baby home to a drywall-free zone.
I knew it would be hard, having 3 children 5 and under. I knew there would be challenges, but I didn't anticipate all my emotions---don't get me wrong. I have always been an emotional person. I cry at all the movies, overanalyze every situation, get "Puerto Rican" angry when something rubs me the wrong way---I'm Puerto Rican, so I can say that--but nothing prepared me for the drop in motivation/control/stability I started to feel around September.
I was so overwhelmed with everything, I have always had this goal to put my children and family first while running VCB. Kids get sick and I'm the one who stays home. Grocery shopping, dinner prep, taking to and from school, managing the calendar, all of it---I wanted to do it. And I could! I had been doing it so well, until one day I wasn't.
I can't pinpoint the day it happened but I can pinpoint the events surrounding me. I had just learned my sweet friend was closing her store. I was so sad but understood. Rilee had left the "newborn" stage and started to get harder--less sleep, more fussy. Ryanne had moved to Austin and 4th quarter had started. We had been super busy at church and the weather had started to cool off so the boys had all this energy and didn't want to take it outside. Christian was working more hours and it was all just so much. Every little change in plans threw my entire mood into a tailspin and I COULD.NOT.HANDLE. IT. I didn't want to go anywhere; I didn't want to see anyone but I still had a business to run, except now I was bringing an infant with me, and I wanted to! I wanted her to come with me. But my productivity went from super efficient to what felt like non-existent. My mom (and Dad) picked up so much slack all while I just got so sad that I couldn't get stuff done. I know, people will say that I will miss this time----I already do! But the pressure—we had bills to pay, household and business. If I didn't get stuff done at the shop, I had to bring it home with me, OR come back after Christian was home. IT WAS ALL TOO MUCH.
I reached out to a friend the day after I had all these crazy thoughts about life without me in it. It was crazy--I know, but I was just so overwhelmed. I couldn't do it all and I knew my thoughts weren't rational. She encouraged me to reach out to my doctor as she had done. It had made a huge difference for her. But even the thought of figuring out childcare for three kids while I went to the doctor was overwhelming to me. Plus, I like to handle stuff on my own. I didn't want to have to be on medicine, I didn't want to have that regulate my emotions. However, I knew I was miserable and I didn't want that anymore either.
So, I did it. I called my doctor. I remember trying to explain to the nurse how I had been ok, everything was fine until it all came tumbling down and then it wasn't. Thankfully, they were able to call me in a prescription for PPD and I've been on that for a couple of months.
You guys-----the difference this medicine has made in my life. It's weird to even share that with you. I don't want to say I'm embarrassed---because I'm not, but it does make me nervous that people will judge me, or laugh. But I think it's important to share because so many of you are mamas like me, and it's a lonely little world in momhood. I laugh because Christian has mentioned that "I still get mad at him for things" and I do---it's to help regulate my moods, not give him a free pass at living his best life--ha! But most importantly, it's given me freedom to laugh or not get upset if we don't have the sweetest interaction with a customer, or get overwhelmed when my kids are absolutely insane and wiping their grimy fingers on my newly polished stainless steel refrigerator----I know some of you can relate!
So, to end 2019---I'm leaving behind my PPD and looking into a brighter future for 2020, I'm looking forward to embracing the crazy that is 3, 5 and under--to continuing to work VCB and meet some of my favorite people, to strengthen my relationship with God and my hubs and I'm looking forward to genuinely enjoying life. It was really dark there for a while, girls....but not anymore.
Wishing you all peace, love & laughter in the new year!