4 years ago seems like I was a completely different person, because I was. I was 20 and in college studying to get my degree in photography. I was also pregnant (read I was 20 and pregnant.) Pregnancy was so weird and unusual to me, there’s really no experience like it. Morning sickness hit me hard and, admittedly, to this day I have not lost my pregnancy weight. I quickly fell into a depression.
The entire process of having a baby completely changes you as a person, at least it did for me. My body was acting and looking like it never had before. The changing hormones were just hard to describe. Somewhere along the way I was diagnosed with mild depression.
While that was my diagnosis, I was never officially diagnosed with postpartum. However, my depression did start after having Leo. I’m no professional and it has been a while since I’ve been versed on the effects of postpartum. I do want to open up and share with you what I went through after having Leo.
Motherhood wasn’t easy for me at all. And I might not want to say this, but my age surly played a factor. I wasn’t totally naive, I read all the books and took all the classes. However, while my friends were traveling the world, I was on mommy time.
I love my role as a mother, but it was so hard for me to adjust to putting this tiny nugget’s schedule above my own. He decided when we’d wake up in the morning. Our entire lives revolved around nap time, because even skipping one would throw off the entire day. Bedtime was a nightmare. Leo would cry and cry just because he hated bed time.
Back then he was just my boyfriend, but he honestly was so much more than that. Where I couldn’t take care of myself or my baby, he stepped in. Richard truly shines as a dad, and writing this post I realize this may have been the strongest we’ve been as a couple. He truly nourished mine and Leo’s need all while being our only source of income. He cleaned, woke up with Leo when he didn’t have to, and let me cry on his shoulder when I needed to.
It gave me the excuse to be lazy. I’ll never discredit anything Richard did. But him taking care of me let me not take care of myself. Him stepping up and taking care of Leo made me expect him to do that all the time. He didn’t have to do any of those things, but him doing so gave me the excuse to lay in bed and do nothing. Sometimes he still does the same thing today. I love him to death, and I love that he takes care of me, but I think we’d both agree.
I just got tired or being tired all the time. There were so many things that I wanted to do with my life and my business and I felt like a bad mom. Have you been there? I can honestly look anyone in the face now and tell them I’m a damn good mom. I’d never say I’m perfect, but I know feel natural and happy about my role as a mom, but it took me a while to get there.
Leo was 1 years old when I finally went to my doctor. I knew I finally needed help. She said, yep, you have mild depression. I don’t know how long I was on anti-depressants for but they honestly weren’t my favorite. What they did do is get me out of my funk.
To anyone who’s experienced severe postpartum, or just clinical depression my heart goes out to you. There are resources out there for you, I promise it can get better. I didn’t experience anything that needed a lot of help but I know some women who are close to me who have. The best thing anyone can do is go talk to your doctor. Mine is amazing and was on board to do anything we needed to do.
May 22, 2019