Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Other Shoe

I really debated about whether or not to publish this post. Not because I am embarrassed or want to hide it, but more because of how personal this issue is. I use this blog to write about my day to day life, but I don't share many of my opinions and feelings on it. That is just the way I have gone about things. However, I don't want my experience to be for nothing. If one person reads this and understands just a little bit more about postpartum issues, then I have succeeded. It is not something to be ashamed or embarrassed about. Rather it is something that we should feel free to openly discuss and support each other through.
About a month after I had Peachy I started to realize that I just wasn't feeling myself. I was still super emotional. There were times when I would wake up in the middle of the night with my heart pounding unable to sleep. I would feel extremely anxious throughout the day for no apparent reason. At first I chalked it up to normal postpartum feelings. But soon I realized I might be experiencing something more. I talked to a doctor about it and started taking antidepressants and slowly started to feel more like myself.
I was waiting to experience the same thing after Cream was born. I reached the one month mark and still felt good. Sure I still had my moments, but what new mom  doesn't. Friends would ask how I was feeling and I told them that I was feeling good, but waiting for the other shoe to drop. Waiting to see if I would have postpartum issues again or if I would make it through this time.
Unfortunately I began to experience postpartum anxiety again around 5 weeks postpartum. Thankfully I could recognize it this time and talk to my doctor about it at my 6 week check up. He put me back on my medication. It has been two weeks now and I am starting to feel the medication at work. I no longer wake in the middle of the night with an overwhelming feeling. I can have more patience as I deal with Peachy in all her two year old glory. I am starting to feel a bit more like myself.
I know that it is different for every mom out there. For some having a child brings about feelings of complete happiness and fulfillment. For others there is more of a learning curve. And for some of us it just doesn't sort itself out. I consider myself to have a pretty mild case. Some are not as fortunate as I am and end up being hospitalized in order to sort everything out. A low dose of antidepressants is all that I need to control the hormones that are going wonky in my body. Others need to try different forms and dosages of medications until they find the right combination.
And medication isn't the only answer. I have been pouring myself into God's Word. Leaning on the support of friends and family. And talking about what I am feeling. Mr. Cherry is a rock as usual and has been a shoulder to cry on and an understanding ear to listen. And just because I am now on medication I am not automatically the mother I would like to be. There are still times of anxiety. There are still times I am not patient with my girls. There always will be. But to be able to feel a little more like myself and struggle a little less is a victory to me.


Emily said...

I think it's wonderful that you posted this, and I'm glad that you have the resources and support system you need to get you through the tougher times. You're a strong woman, Kristi! Thanks for talking about a subject that should be talked about MORE.

The Ninja said...

It's very good that you were able to recognize the difference between typical baby blues and an issue that needed to be addressed.

I hope you are getting some sleep and feeling better.

Anonymous said...

You are amazing. Love, love, love you. Lots of prayers for you. ~Jenny

Lexie said...

I know where you are coming from... I was similar with both of my girls and it's was not fun. I am glad you are able to get it sorted out. God's Word is amazing along with all your other support. And I do too think it's good to write about it, so many people keep it a secret, it's good to know others have dealt in similar ways!

Heather said...

Thanks so much for sharing. I had the same issues when my son was born. I appreciate your honesty. I am expecting my second child first of the year and am a little nervous yet hopeful that maybe this time I wont need medication but am fully prepared to take it if need be. It helped me even things out last time. Know that I will be reading yours blog during those night time feedings!