by Lisette W
Postpartum hit me like a brick. On the outside I was happy, keeping it together. Inside I felt like I was drowning. So much doubt. So much self-loathing.
My first’s birth was traumatic, followed by a NICU stay where we fell through the cracks of support and had to find our way ourselves. Add the struggle to breastfeed and I was gone.
I was diagnosed with postpartum depression and anxiety. I was screaming at a three week old. I would snap with sudden rage at a little baby who thought I was her whole world. I didn’t want to be her mom. I wanted to run away. There must be someone out there who can love and care for her more than me. Better than me.
This side of parenthood isn’t talked about. The ugly side where you’re at the door with your keys wondering where you could go that isn’t here. The feelings of utter failure because you’re incapable of nursing – the thing everyone notes as natural and easy. Being surrounded by people but not knowing how to ask for help that’s helpful. Surrounded by people but grasping for sanity.
Thankfully I was able to start seeing a therapist who specialized in perinatal mood and anxiety disorders and got onto medication. I am a much better mom for my kids when I take care of my needs first.