Overcoming Postpartum Depression – Becky’s Story
I am no stranger to anxiety and depression. SSRIs and anti-anxiety medications have been a part of my diet since my mid twenties and honestly should have probably been snuck into my baby bottle. When getting pregnant with my son I weaned myself off of the medication because I felt it was what was best for the baby’s health.
Fast forward to my labor which consisted of 12 hours of unmedicated labor (by choice…because I was one of THOSE women) followed by 7-10 more hours of pushing and finally an emergency c-section.
So, to say I was disappointed by how my birth story ended up is quite the understatement. I felt immediately like a failure. I did everything “right”…everything that the documentaries and books said to do, so why did I end up with a c-section? What did I do wrong?
Postpartum depression begins
I vividly remember hearing my baby cry for the first time as they pulled him out and feeling…nothing. I tried to squeeze out a tear because that’s what new moms do, right? I tried to feel the happiness they told me I would, but it wasn’t there.
I recall being alone in the hospital room at night, praying each wheeled cart that went by would not be my son ready for another failed breastfeeding. I remember texting a good friend I thought I made a mistake. A mistake in having him at all.
Check out a list of postpartum depression symptoms here.
As the days went on and the breastfeeding became more impossible (I had Lupus but didn’t know it yet) and the lack of sleep got worse and worse, I felt even more hopeless.
While I never wanted to hurt my child I wished to GOD I could go back in time to pre-child life, and realize that I was never meant to be a mother. I failed at birth, I failed at breastfeeding, and lastly failed at connecting like a mother should.
Things look up for Becky and the healing from postpartum depression begins.
Luckily a tiny part of me knew myself and immediately went to a doctor to get my medication re-prescribed. It took weeks to kick back in and during that time I doubted myself and my baby every day. I didn’t realize hormones crashing could send me into more of a tailspin then I already was.
As I got more stable and I figured out each week was different, my baby would change, begin to sleep, and react and give me emotions I could give back to him. And I would never go back to life without him. I still feel bad I robbed my son and myself from those early days, because we can’t ever go back. But luckily we can go forward. And we have.
Follow Becky on Instagram: @beckbal