Out of the Darkness

I didn’t know how much my life would change after the birth of my daughter. I knew that I would have more responsibilities raising a child, but I didn’t expect to have my world turned upside down. While I was trying to get pregnant, I miscarried twice. I was absolutely devastated, but kept trying. I eventually became pregnant a third time and delivered a healthy baby girl nine months later.

After she was born, I felt like I was in a fog. It was the weirdest thing I’ve ever experienced. I don’t really remember much, it was as if I “checked out” for a couple of days. Maybe it was the pain medicine (I had a c-section) or maybe lack of sleep. All I know is, I never want to experience it ever again.

My mom told me that she knew instantly that something was wrong. She said that I wouldn’t look at the baby or show any interest in her at all. It was as if I had totally blocked out her birth. It only got worse over the days to follow. My mom made an appointment with my gynecologist and he recommended a psychiatrist and while I waited for that appointment, he put me on an antidepressant. After a few weeks I started to feel better. I still wasn’t 100% but I was way better than before.

I was blindsided by postpartum depression. The thought of postpartum depression never crossed my mind the entire time I was pregnant. NOT ONE TIME. I really wish someone would have warned me. I wish my doctor would have screened me for it. After all, he knew that my Aunt had gotten sick and passed away in my third trimester, so you would think he would have at least talked to me about the possibility of it happening.

The worst part of it all was looking at my child and feeling absolutely nothing. What kind of mother feels that way about their child? That’s what I kept telling myself over and over and over again. I had debilitating anxiety and couldn’t leave the house with her. I had these intrusive thoughts of dropping her constantly. I cried nonstop over every little thing. I was miserable. What was supposed to be the best time of my life was sadly not that great.

The good news is, I got better. The sooner I realized that this was not going to go away and that I had to do something about it, the better. I am no longer ashamed of what happened to me. I want to share my story in the hopes that I help at least one person during their struggle with depression. I want other women to know that they are not alone and that they will get better!

Read more from Beyond Baby Blues.

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