My 3 month old just wouldn’t stop crying! It had been over an hour, and he won’t sleep when clearly he is sleepy. I had fed him, and burped him. But nothing seemed to help. At that moment, all I could think of was running far away from him. His crying was driving me insane, and I wanted to lock myself into the bathroom and cry until I felt better. As a second time mom, I figured it’d be easier this time around. I expected my experience with my first-born would help me manage my newborn more efficiently. But I felt worse with every passing moment. I was not able to connect with him, and started feeling that my two sons would do a lot better without me.
Something wasn’t right with me. I missed being myself and hated myself for having random episodes of sadness, mixed with frustration and anger. My behavior had started taking a toll on my marriage as I snapped at everyone around me. I had read about postpartum depression, but never imagined being a victim to it. And I didn’t realize I had it until my friend pointed it out to me. She always knew me as a happy and positive individual, and I didn’t remember that person anymore. My soul was aching, and I felt a dark cloud surrounding me at all times.Feeling trapped and alone; I didn’t know how or who to reach out for help. I wanted to connect with my little boys, but the wall of bitter helplessness separated us. Which only seemed to be getting taller and taller by the day.
I needed help. So I hesitantly reached out to my closest friends, and I’m so grateful that I did. This sole decision saved me. My friends started to check on me more often, and suggested I discuss my symptoms with my gynecologist. Unbeknown to me, my gynecologist was remarkably understanding and sympathetic. As a result, all my fears of being judged and misunderstood instantly washed away. She recommended a change in my daily routine, and even spoke to my husband to help me get through it.
With the much-needed help of my friends and a strong support system, I managed to push though the darkness. I began going out for walks, and spending some alone time. I missed writing, so with the help of my husband, I managed to write content for a website. Being able to be someone more than a mother helped me recognize myself again. I had already started to feel lighter, and happier. After about 5 months, I had started kinda liking myself again. And most importantly, I could finally bond with my kids, and after what felt like an eternity; the tall wall between us had crumbled down.
My experience with postpartum depression felt like riding through a pitch-dark tunnel that had no end: filled with fear and hopelessness. But a promise with myself to get pass it, to push through the darkness enabled me to get to the other side. There’s hope to get better for everyone. There’ll be days a lot darker than the others, but it gets better. It’s a journey you have to take to reach to you kids. So reach out, if you have to. And find hope in yourself again.