Friday, February 27, 2015

A Letter For You

Dear Expecting Mommies and Daddies,

I know how you're feeling. I've been there. You're excited. You're nervous. You're anxious and happy and stressed and worried all at the same time. You have been planning this for months, maybe years, and you just want that little fella to come out already so you can meet him (or her)!! The registry is completed, the nursery is decorated, name is picked out and is already embroidered on an obscene amount of baby all that's left is waiting.

While you're waiting, you're probably going to take a baby class, or Google or Pinterest fun little baby facts and activities. What games can I play with a newborn? How often should they sleep? How do I soothe a crying baby? How much should they eat? How often do I bathe them? Your list is never ending. On top of that, you're also researching baby products and questioning the ones you already bought. Has my car seat been recalled since we installed it? Which stroller is the safest? A Medela breast pump, or a Playtex? Does FisherPrice even make safe bouncy seats? I better read 400 reviews and find out.

What did you find out?

I bet you learned what product was the best for you and your baby. You made a decision and know it's the best one you could make. You are now prepared. You have your checklists checked, your cupboards full of those sanitized bottles and pacifiers, freezer stocked with pre-made meals you spent hours preparing, and you just got told by a technician that your car seat is perfectly installed. Whew! But you're still waiting....

Since you have a minute, I'd like to give you some advice. You can be so prepared, have everything ready, done everything you were suppose to do to prepare for this little baby you are about to get to call your own, but are you really prepared? Whether this is your first or fifth, even if you have countless hours of baby experience, nothing can prepare you for this baby. This baby is different.This one is going to change your entire life, turn everything upside down, change everything you do and how you do it. And all those reviews you read about those products? They don't matter. You are already armed with the tools and knowledge you need to keep your baby safe and healthy. Trust me, it's instinctual whether you would like to think that or not. It will all come to you in the moment because you won't have a choice, and you'll find yourself making snap decisions like you've never made before and you know what? 99% of the time it's gonna turn out just fine.

But mommies and daddies, take this time to be selfish. Think about yourself for just a few minutes before baby gets here. Take the time to arm yourself with the tools you'll need for you after baby arrives. Mommies, read about recovery! There is nothing else like it and you are going to be uncomfortable and overwhelmed by how much you actually have to take care of yourself for the first few weeks. And daddies, spend some time with the guys. Have a few too many beers. And when you sober up the next morning, read an article or two about how to be there for your new mama when you bring the baby home. She is going to need you more than ever, even if she looks like she's handling it, she needs you. Or don't read anything at all, and just sit with her in the dark in the middle of the night while she feeds the baby, or bring her a glass of water (or some of that beef jerky she couldn't have for the last 9 months) without being asked.

Most importantly, cherish your new little family. Cherish the moments you have. The beginning is rough, but you cannot get that time back. You won't get a do over. Love each other on days when it seems really hard to and never take each other for granted.

I'd Rather Be Sleep Deprived

Not everyday is a good day. Sometimes that old friend Bitter and Guilt come over and decide to hang out for the day.

I wish being a new mom made me tired. I wish it made me stressed and busy, but left with feelings of fulfillment at the end of the day. But it doesn't. I'm well rested. I'm bored. A lot. Stress? Nope. Busy? It's not that hard to chase a 9 week old baby...they don't move very fast. And mine is apparently happier than a clam in her swaddle with a paci in her mouth, swaying back and forth with me in a rocking chair so I can catch up on Facebook or, apparently, my blog. I found myself this week bitter at other new moms who share their funny sleep deprivation stories or haven't showered in days because they're so busy keeping their household together. Well people, I just don't get it. I make dinner every night, do laundry, go to bed at a decent hour and usually get 6-7 hours of solid sleep, and showers? Yeah, I take at least a 20 minute shower everyday. I'm one of the lucky ones!! Uhhh....

No. With no stress and long ass showers comes time. Time to think. Time for me to realize that motherhood would be much easier if my worst problem was simply sleep deprivation. No no. That is only the beginning. 

Each morning I wake up eager to pop the next anti-depressant out of sheer FEAR that if I wait too long I'll start to feel an overhelming amount of sadness that I won't be able to bounce back from it and I will spend the entire day in tears questioning every life decision I've ever made that has led me to motherhood. And drugs don't fix everything. The other night I had a legit anxiety attack that Hubs had decided to leave me for another woman and bawled uncontrollably for 45 minutes while feeding my baby. Keep in mind, Hubs was at work at the time and I hadn't spoken to him since his last break hours sooner (at which time he gave no indication that he was leaving me). I was an irrational mess. I AM an irrational mess, and no nap or full night sleep can fix that. 

Then Guilt decides to keep me company too. Why not? Before giving birth, I shared the excitement and happiness with others around me for the arrival of our little bundle of joy. Once she was finally here, that excitement and happiness continued for everyone. Except me. I should be the most happy; I'm her mommy! I watch family and friends holding P and they smile and giggle with her and tell me they miss her later on and how great she is. Well, I know she's great. And I do smile at her and when she smiles at me it is honestly the highlight of my day and I question if I'm choosing to be sad because how can something so precious not make me giddy? So I feel guilty. I feel guilty that I can't enjoy my baby as much as others and it kills me to see how happy other people are when they hold her. And I don't miss her. I could leave for hours and not miss her. Of course, I worry about her. I want to make sure she's safe and soothed because I love her, but I do not miss her. So I feel guilty. And there are times Guilt and Bitter collide and I miss being able to go out to dinner with Hubs or see a movie together, or cuddle on the couch without worrying we're staying up too late because I know I'll be up at 3am. I feel bitter I don't enjoy my marriage like I once did, and then guilty for wanting to put Hubs before my baby.

I tell myself that by writing this blog, putting myself out there and becoming vulnerable that I can somehow help someone and make a difference, but honestly, I'm not so sure anymore. How can I help others when I haven't fixed myself yet? How can I help others when I am still embarassed and ashamed that I have a clinical diagnosis of post partum depression? 

All healing, whether physical or emotional, takes time. I spend my days waiting for the clock to be up on my time and I will suddenly be cured. That I will wake up one day and I will be back to being Me again. That I will be the mommy I have talked about wanting to be for years with Hubs. That I will be the wife Hubs deserves and had before my hormones decided to take me hostage.

Oh yes, I wish sleep deprivation was biggest problem.....

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Dear Baby, I'm Sorry

Dear Baby,
I'm sorry I didn't smile at you
your first few weeks of life.
I'm sorry mommy cried with you
when it was late at night.
I'm sorry I didn't play with you
and encourage you to coo,
I'm sorry I kept my distance
and forgot to say I Love You.
I wish that things were different
and I appreciated what I had
I wish I could have a do over
and believe it wouldn't be so bad.
I'm sorry that I got sick
the day we brought you home,
and that it took so long for me to seek help
because I felt so alone.
But Baby let me make it up to you,
I promise from now on
that I will love you every second
and never do you wrong.
I promise I will work on me
if you can forgive my mistakes
so we can enjoy our days together
nothing for granted I will take.
Dear Baby,
I love you so much
I only hope that you can know
that I never meant to hurt you
and that our relationship will grow.
I will never let you down again,
and I'm sorry I did before,
please let me make it up to you
my Baby, forevermore.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Maternity Leave is Not a Vacation

When I was pregnant I made the decision I would take the longest maternity leave I could to bond with my new baby. I found out I was lucky enough to be able to take off 12 weeks, paid. I went for it! I was so excited to spend 12 whole weeks with my new little baby and not at work. I planned everything out. We would play all day and I would clean the house, paint the living room, cook meals, go shopping, work out, spend time with my dogs and get P into a schedule (yeah, I thought I could start a schedule on Day 1) was going to be the best 12 weeks of my life.

For the first four weeks I had Hubs at home with me. We spent every day on the couch watching TV and playing games on our phones. We took care of our daughter and ate take out when we remembered to eat. We took naps and sat up all night together if P wouldn't stop crying. I didn't shower. I went days without changing my clothes; I lived in pajamas. I didn't clean a damn thing. In fact, the clean laundry would sit in the basket waiting to be put away for a week before I would give in and do something about it. When I did shower, I would stand there and cry because I was sad, and the burning of my stitches made me feel like I was never going to heal. The giant pads as long as my arm that I had to wear every day made me feel so unattractive that I didn't feel the need to get dressed or change my clothes; who was I trying to impress? I knew recovering from childbirth was not easy, but I really didn't know how hard and painful it would be for the first few weeks. I was always uncomfortable, and let's not forget the perpetual fear of having to go to the bathroom! Oh yes, my days were filled with meaning.

Hubs eventually had to go back to work and I continued the same pattern of sitting on the couch all day. Yes, all damn day. I managed to pull myself together to take care of P without him, but nothing else changed. At 6 weeks post-partum I finally started on anti-depressants. After a few days my motivation to live a life returned, and now the real work began. Everything I had neglected for the last few weeks had caught up with me. I washed dishes, did the laundry (and put it away the same day), took care of the dogs, played with P, took naps and ate nutritous meals. By 7 weeks post-partum I began running again. I went grocery shopping and even cooked dinners. I ran errands with P and tried to find a reason to leave the house almost every day, even if it was just to the gas station or the Starbucks drive thru. Anything to get out of the house for a small amount of time seemed satisfying. My days seemed busy and passed fairly quickly. Eventually, P and I fell into a natural routine that consisted of watching Good Morning America every morning, feeding, playing and napping. P would nap and I would enjoy my morning cup of coffee and catch up on my news feed (yes, that bitch Facebook still plays a role in my daily life, although I am much less bitter at others posts now). Throughout the day P would watch me wash bottles and fold laundry or dust the living room, and then we would venture out for our quick errand and come home and play and nap some more before I would start dinner before Hubs got home from work. We always seem busy together and I now involve her in almost every task I do throughout the day. I am finally bonding with my baby.

I am now 8.5 weeks post-partum. I still haven't cleaned my bathroom. I haven't painted my living room. I don't make my bed every day and sometimes I stay in my pajama pants. But I am not bored. Every day I focus on getting better and bonding with P. I don't mind that I can't work out as much as I wanted to or that my house projects remain incomplete; I'll get to it all eventually. I am on maternity leave, I am not on a paid vacation. I've accepted my life has changed and my days need to remain focused on my daughter and my family. People are still in shock that I am choosing to stay home for 12 weeks, but I need at least that long to adjust to motherhood. I am not on vacation. I am in the middle of a total lifestyle change.

Social Media: That Selfish Bitch

Facebook. Everyone has it. Everyone uses it. Everyone (ok, most) shares every detail of their life, including the life changing moment of when they birth a child. Immediately their page is filled with pictures (yes, I am guilty of this) and captions that read "so blessed to be this little girl/boy's parents," or "we are so in love and couldn't be happier." Then come the statuses....almost daily of how happy they are, how perfect their baby is, how they can't believe their baby is already one week old....yadda yadda yadda.

Adorable. I love baby pictures. I am truly happy for my Facebook friends when they become a mommy or daddy. But there was something different about when my own baby was born. I didn't post captions about how in love with her I was, or how blessed I felt to be her mommy. I posted the occasional picture of her, but I didn't flaunt my lovey dovey feelings all over social media for the world to see. It wasn't that I didn't want to, it's that I honestly did not have those feelings.

But social media is a bitch. It's a cruel, heartless, selfish bitch. Social media lies. Approximately 10-15% of women in the United States suffer from post-partum depression, so of the oodles of friends I have on Facebook that have become parents, it would appear that I am the only one that has suffered. This can just not be true. I refuse to accept that. Scrolling through my news feed only added to my depression as I saw other friends that had babies around the same time as me beaming with pride. Just like most people my age, I couldn't resist checking Facebook multiple times a day, but every time I did I sunk deeper into this hole that something was wrong with me and that I was a bad mom, yet I couldn't stop obsessing over how happy everyone else was and how unhappy I was. Why didn't I want to gloat about my baby? Why didn't I feel blessed to be P's mommy? Why didn't I want to rub in everyone's face that I just had a baby and look how adorable she is in this onesie?

Social media lies. Social media allows us to portray a life that we might not necessarily have as a reality, but wish we had. So why are women so afraid to admit they aren't head over heals, can't stop staring in love with their new baby? I couldn't bring myself to lie on social media and continue making posts about how happy I was because I wasn't. Instead, I distanced myself from updating my page at all. I feared that if I did post anything, that eventually people would catch on that my feelings weren't genuine and call me out. And of course, being the only person that has ever felt depressed after having their baby, I couldn't bear the humiliation and guilt of that happening.

It was recently brought to my attention that postpartum depression can start as early as when you first become pregnant. Had I begun to have these feelings while I was still pregnant, I may have been able to prevent it from exploding into this full blown, paralyzing depression. But I didn't. I was happy being pregnant. I loved talking about my baby and planning everything out for when she arrived. I felt unbelievable happiness every time I felt her move in my belly and fell asleep every night with my hand on my stomach. Her kicks soothed me to sleep; I had never been happier. I naturally assumed this happiness would continue, especially considering that everyone else I knew was when they brought baby home. How can a place filled with thousands of people make us feel so alone?

Social media is wonderful. We can keep in contact with more people than we ever thought possible, and it is now made convenient by being everywhere we are. Social media is a bitch. It can also make us believe that everyone is living a perfect life, which can be far from the reality that we're living. It makes us think we're alone, even when we're connecting with others, and it can make us feel so isolated that we are ashamed to admit to ourselves our own true feelings. I can't say for sure if literally no one else on my friends list has never suffered from PPD, but if they did, I hope they were also able to seek help and know that not everything we see online is real. I hope that anyone reading this that thinks they might also be suffering from PPD/PPA/OCD is able to find the courage to seek help and know that you are not alone.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Why I Don't Breastfeed

In 2013, 77% of all American babies were breastfed. The positives are numerous, varying from nutrients for baby, reduces infant allergies, builds immunities, burns calories, saves money, and many more.

That being said, P's health is the most important thing to me. Burning calories was appealing to me as well. It was settled. I was going to breastfeed my baby. I got everything together. I bought a pump, ice packs, storage bags, alcohol test strips (hey, mama needs a glass of wine from time to time), and read countless blogs on starting a supply, what to eat and not eat and tips for producing. Of course, when the time came I was nervous. I told the hospital I wanted to exclusively pump, but would start when I got home, so P would be bottle fed while we were in the hospital. I had every intention of pumping multiple times a day, building my supply, storing extras, and burning those awesome calories. I was excited to do this for my baby.

But then we came home. Understandably so, the first day home was exhausting and we needed some time to adjust, so P was bottle fed for one more day. The days that followed I had no energy. I couldn't get off the couch and, as we all know by now, I was suffering from post-partum depression. Finally, I decided I had to try. I invested all this money into the act of pumping, so I might as well just try it. It wasn't that bad, although time consuming and the pump was loud, but it wasn't bothersome. The next day I was feeling a little better and thought I was finally getting out of this slump I had been in, so I pumped again. But three steps forward for me also meant ten steps back. I couldn't bring myself to pump again. I couldn't bring myself to get off the couch to do it. I kept telling myself I needed to and that it was the best for P, and me, but it didn't matter. Hubs would ask if I was going to and I would dance around the question and just mix another bottle of formula. Friends and family were well aware that I had made the decision to pump and would ask me how it was going. I would say it was going fine, because it did, but I didn't tell them I had stopped.

When P was a few weeks old I couldn't really avoid the truth any longer. Why was everyone so curious how I was feeding my baby? Why did everyone care? After all, it was my baby, not theirs. Nonetheless, I told them I had stopped and she was exclusively formula feeding now. People reacted like I had just told them I had some super contagious disease. They didn't know what to say. What was the big deal? So my baby drinks formula, get over it.

P's health is still my number one priority, which is why she is formula fed. I was so sad and depressed after she was born that pumping was emotionally and mentally impossible for me to accomplish. I was sick. I needed to get better. If I didn't get better, what would happen to P? Maybe she wouldn't get the nutrients from breastmilk, but I had to get better for her. Being depressed and not dealing with it made me a much worse mother than formula feeding. If I was happy, I knew I could make my baby happy. I would cuddle with her, feed her, play with her....if I didn't focus on myself and getting better, what kind of mother was she going to be left with? That's not what I wanted for her.

I would like to think that eventually other members of the Mom Club will stop judging other members. We all have a reason behind the decisions we make for our children, and we believe that the decision we make is the best for our child, ourselves and our family. I do not formula feed because I am selfish or don't care about my baby's health, I formula feed because I want my baby to grow up with a happy mommy that enjoys every moment they share together.

The Mom Club

The Mom Club. n. A club in which all women who mother a child is automatically initiated into whether she wants to or not. Membership often entails unwanted advice and personal details of which you could live without. Dues are paid daily, weekly or monthly, depending on how often you choose to leave your house.

I knew I was becoming a mom for 9 months. For 39 weeks I prepared, planned, researched. I knew everything I needed to know about labor and bringing baby home! What I wish someone had told me was that the day I brought my bundle of joy home from the hospital that I was also a permanent member of the Mom Club.

Staying at home with P was great. Everything was peaceful. Quiet, for the most part. Family and friends were helpful and encouraging of whatever choices we decided to make for our daughter. But taking P into public was a whole different ball game. I think I became a member of the Club somewhere around 20 weeks pregnant. My belly was becoming much larger at this point and it seemed like wherever me and Hubs went, people asked us how far along I was and if we knew what we were having yet. Oh yes, it's a girl and we're due in December. People's eyes lit up and their mouths opened with a flood of words. Current moms and dads alike babbled on and on to us about their experiences as parents, pregnancy, labor, breastfeeding, potty training...information overload!

When I was 37 weeks pregnant, a woman talked to me for an hour about how her daughter was born with severe reflux. Her daughter screamed day and night, they tried everything from her change of diet (as she was breastfeeding) to even trying different formulas. They tried medicines and homeopathic remedies, but their daughter continued to vomit constantly until she was 5. Her daughter was now 11 and still had problems, but they were finally under control and she hoped I didn't have this same experience. Oh don't worry, this didn't scare me at all....

At 22 weeks, I was given grotesque details about a home birth from someone I knew for approximately 4 minutes. They smiled as they described the labor and placenta....oh dear.

Throughout my entire pregnancy I was given random advice from strangers no matter where I went. I thought it would end there, but no such luck. Now that P was here, we received advice from women everywhere! Methods they tried with their own kids, what worked, what didn't, how difficult their children were as babies and how difficult they got when they were, was there anything positive about being a parent? One lady (waiting in line behind me at a pharmacy) told me the first few years of her children's lives were a blur and she couldn't recall one single detail because of how exhausted she had been. One lady, who I'm assuming was an honorary member of the club, kept comparing the similarities I would experience with my baby that she currently has with her terrier. I couldn't stop the advice. I was a magnet for all mothers everywhere. I  was approached in public bathrooms, store check out lines, the doctor's name it, I've probably been given advice there before.

At the end of the day, the choices I make for my daughter are mine. I understand other members of the Club have the best intentions, but I wish the meetings were optional.


Being a first time mom, I only thought I knew what I was getting myself into the day that test turned up positive. When I saw that second line appear, I couldn't believe it. We had been trying for months and the day was finally here. We were going to be parents! We immediately began planning, starting a registry, discussing names, talking about all the things we wanted to teach him/her and what we hoped for the future....we smiled every time we heard the heartbeat and stared at the ultrasound pictures proudly. After many months of organizing and thousands of dollars later, our nursery was complete. It was perfect and we couldn't wait to put our little princess in it.

Flash forward. The day has finally arrived that that little second line has now turned into a full grown baby we were carrying into our home for the very first time. We put her in her swing and stared at her. Hubs beamed with pride. I felt nothing. I was tired, the house was a mess, the dogs were needy and curious (therefore, annoying) and all I wanted to do was lay on the couch, turn on the TV and relax. I did spend the next three weeks doing just this, as P pretty much slept the whole day, but it wasn't the same. I didn't want to pick her up. I didn't want to cuddle her or rock her or feed her or change her...I just wanted to be me again.

Regret immediately set in. What had I done? My life is ruined! I will never get to do anything again! I will never have Hubs to myself again! We will never go out on a date again! What have I done?????

Every day I regretted my baby. I didn't see her as a burden, but I truly believed I had ruined my life. I didn't think I was meant to be a mother after all. I didn't understand why everyone was so happy for us because I was so miserable for myself. I was bitter at visitors who came to hold P and commented on how adorable she was and how lucky we were, then they would leave with the 'Make sure to enjoy that baby!' Ugh. Every time someone said that I wanted to respond with 'No thank you,' but I somehow found the energy to fake a smile instead. It was nice having visitors and seeing everyone, but at the same time it made me resent them because they got to leave and I was tied down to this baby. I couldn't shake the feeling that I didn't want my baby anymore. I knew it was horrible to think that, but I couldn't stop. I didn't know how I could possibly get out of this whole "mother" thing anymore. Worst yet, Hubs was so incredibly happy over our newborn that I knew it would break his heart if I told him I felt this way. What if he decided I wasn't meant to be a mother either and take the baby and leave me? What if he was so disgusted that I felt this way about our baby that we had wanted so badly that he couldn't stand to be near me anymore? I couldn't tell my family because they were head over heels in love with our newest addition, and all of my friends with children only talked about how great and happy their kids made them. They would definitely think I was the worst person. I would lose literally everyone in my life if they knew.

But my life had changed. Every. Single. Thing. My whole world was turned around and it was the one thing I didn't plan for or discuss with anyone beforehand. For 9 months I talked about being pregnant, having a newborn and going into labor, but not once did I think about what was going to happen afterwards. No one warned me. Everyone warned me about contractions and pushing and sleepless nights with a if no one told me there was a slight chance of me being miserable once I was home with the baby, then no one else must have ever felt this way about their own baby before.

That means I was the only one to ever have post-partum depression. Whoa. That's heavy.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Running in Place

Ever since I can remember I have always run away from my problems. Perhaps it was a fear of confrontation, or letting someone down or showing any signs of weakness, but either way I have always tried to avoid them. Growing up, it could have been a disagreement with my parents, a bad grade, a fight with a friend...I would avoid addressing the issue at all costs.

Now here's the real challenge....have you ever tried to run away from a baby? Let me tell you that it is damn near impossible. Physically, yes, easy peasy. Emotionally? Those little boogers are magnets! Despite the fact that each day I struggle to be positive and interact with my baby, I can't seem to escape her. So then the brilliant thought comes that I could just take her with me and maybe the real problem is where I am, not what I'm going through. Well by the time you have the baby fed, burped and changed, the diaper bag filled, the dogs locked up, purse loaded and baby strapped into the car seat, you are too freaking exhausted to make it out the door alone with all that crap, emotional baggage included. So you succumb and throw the bags on the floor, release the dogs and lift the baby back out and plop your ass back on the couch where a nice indent has already been started from the many days of being parked there. Oofda.

There has to be an easier way to run away from your problems. Especially now. The baby is crying, the dog just pooped on the floor, there's three loads of laundry staring me in the face, a sink full of dishes and now I can't stop itching myself because of an allergic reaction to the beautiful meds I was put on to deal with PPD. I can't figure out which is worse....being horrifically sad, or being slightly sad and itching like crazy. It's a toss up, really. It's impossible to run away from all this craziness. It's crazy to think I could run way from what has become my life. It's silly to think I shouldn't want this life.

I tried to think of the last thing that made me happy. Of course, my husband makes me happy, my adorable puppies, my loving family, a glass of wine after a long day.....but what was the last thing I did that made me happy? Of course. The one thing that I was so great at. Running! But this time it would be different. This time, I wouldn't be running away from my problems, I would be running towards a solution to them. I decided enough was enough. After many attempts, I got off the couch, put on my tennis shoes, strapped P into her swing in front of the treadmill, put in my headphones and ran. A very slow, frequently-interrupted-by-baby-cries run. And it felt GREAT! Sure, it took me 17 minutes to go one mile, and I wasn't getting any further away than when I started, but I finally started feeling better. It was the first day in weeks I didn't cry in the shower or feel helpless. I felt filled with purpose and motivation again. I saw a glimpse of the woman I used to be and the woman I am trying to be again. I only hope I can stay running in place long enough to see her again.

Friday, February 13, 2015

I Caved

It was 3am and I found myself crying uncontrollably, staring at my daughter who had been crying for over four hours. I was alone. I couldn't take it. What had I gotten myself into? Hubs was at work and I had been desperately texting him for hours now to please hurry home. When he finally walked in the door at 3:30am after putting in a long day at work, he looked at me and told me to get some sleep, took our daughter and left the room. My goodness, what did I do to deserve such an amazing man??

Oh I even deserve this amazing of a man? Immediately panic and anxiety set in and for weeks following I went over every scenario in my head of how my husband will decide to break my heart and shatter my world. I waited. I knew it was coming. Surely a man that is willing to work two jobs, sometimes 20+ hours in a weekend, take the baby in the middle of the night (sometimes all night), run to the store to get me anything I wanted whenever I wanted, was more than understanding about the "6 week post-partum" rule and did the dishes without being asked did not want to stay with a mess such as myself, right?

I knew it was coming.

Three weeks later Hubs was home on his few hours in between jobs, and instead of napping like he once used to, he was playing with our daughter. I was sitting on our living room floor when he took her to her room for a diaper change. I lost it. I couldn't take it anymore. Why was he torturing me like this? I'm already an emotional mess and dread every moment of the day, and now it is only made worse by waiting for the moment my husband tells me he's leaving me for someone else, someone who has their shit together. I broke down. I bawled. Hubs returned to the room concerned at the sight of me crumbling in the middle of our peaceful home. I told him everything. I'm miserable! I have everything I could ever want and I'm sad all the time and you're going to leave me and we're never going to have time together again and I feel so worthless sitting in this house day after day and I feel guilty for not loving our daughter more or playing with her like you do *gasp for air* and I have a panic attack every time you leave this house and I don't know what's wrong with me or what to do anymore!

Whoa, crazy lady.

I think this was the moment I fell in love with Hubs all over again. He didn't look at me like I was out of my mind, and what he said next was nothing close to the sense that he had found someone else and could I kindly move out as soon as possible. No. He told me he loved me and that having P brought us closer together and he loves our life together and wouldn't change it. He held my hand and told me it's not easy, but that eventually things will go back to normal again. I didn't believe the normal part, but I believed everything else. And when I told him I think I need to call the doctor, he didn't try to talk me out of it or look at me any differently. Instead, he told me whatever I needed to do to get better and be happy again is what I needed to do. I can't believe I had held these feelings in for a grueling 5 weeks!

For so long I felt like I needed to be the strong, do it all, super mom/super wife. I didn't think I could show weakness because that would be letting down my husband, my family, my friends and my daughter. I held everything in, hoping it would all go away and I would magically become me again. Wouldn't it be nice if that's how things worked? And maybe it does. But after 5 weeks of feeling like every day my entire world could fall apart, I couldn't wait any longer. I prayed every night to God to please give me the strength and patience I needed to be a good wife and a good mom and every day I felt like God had let me down....until the night I caved and told Hubs everything and reached out for help. My strength was gifted to me in the form of telling my husband everything and my patience...well, we're working on that, God and I. I'm still healing. I'm still on my long road to recovery. But now I know it does get better and it can get better. I only wish I had been able to cave sooner.

Thursday, February 12, 2015


I remember when I was pregnant asking my other mommy friends 'What if I hate being a mom?' Their response was 'You won't.' I asked, 'What if I don't love my baby?' and they said 'You will.'

So how come the moment she was born and I saw her for the first time, all I wanted to do was eat and sleep for three days? I didn't smile at her. I didn't cry. I felt happy I wasn't pregnant anymore and that labor was finally over, but I certainly did not feel like a mom.

I had heard of other friends feeling like "bad moms" when they sent their newborn to the hospital nursery, but I welcomed the idea. I wanted to just be me for a little longer and to have a few more moments of normalcy. So, I immediately trusted total strangers (nurses) to watch over my newborn baby without a second thought. I didn't even know where the nursery was! Don't get me wrong, I loved looking at my baby girl (she really is the cutest baby, ever!) and changing her diaper and rocking her and holding her, but I did not feel like she was mine.

When we brought baby P home for the first time I dreaded the moments she would wake up and cry because I just didn't want to deal with her. I wanted to sit on the couch with my husband and waste the day away more than I wanted to spend time with my newborn. Something wasn't right. Hubs would leave for a quick convenience store run and I would bawl the minute he left because I missed him so much. Something wasn't right. My baby slept literally all day, yet I went days without changing my clothes, showering or brushing my teeth, and most days I wouldn't eat until dinner. Something is seriously not okay! Friends texted and Facebooked me asking how mommyhood was and I would lie and say 'It's going...' or 'It's different.' Not once did I say it was great, amazing and I am loving every minute of it.

I felt like I had let everyone down. I didn't love being a mom, I didn't feel this overwhelming love for my baby, I didn't have thoughts that everything I did was now for my child. I just didn't. So if everything I had been hearing for the last 9 months was true, then I must be the only one who has ever felt this way. All of my friends, family, social media companions....all of them were happy and overjoyed with the birth of their babies and I was not. I was alone, and I better make sure I don't tell anyone about it because no one else could possibly understand.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015


Oh great, another mommy blog, as if there's not enough of those floating around on the internet, right?

What's the difference between mine and everyone else's? I didn't write everyone else's. Writing has always been a passion of mine, and since it seems to come so easily to me, I thought I would give this blog thing a shot. So, here we go....

On December 26, 2014 my entire world changed. My beautiful daughter, we'll call her P, was born at 6 lbs 15 ounces and 18.5 inches long. She was perfect in every way. My amazingly supportive husband, we'll call him Hubs, cut the umbilical cord and shed a few tears as he met his daughter for the first time and kissed my head thanking me for giving him such a beautiful daughter. Awe, how heartwarming. We finally had it all; great jobs, a house, a beautiful marriage and now our perfect daughter. I had everything I had ever wanted, but why was I the saddest I had ever been?

Everyone tells you that when your child is born and you see them for the first time you fall in love and feel a love more powerful than anything. I was in love with my husband. I was not in love with this wrinkly, wet, jaundice baby that was suddenly thrown on my stomach. Surely, I loved her, but I was not in love with her. I had just met her! I knew absolutely nothing about her and she knew absolutely nothing about me. I assured myself this feeling was normal, however as soon as we got home from the hospital with her I knew something wasn't right. I found myself crying uncontrollably for no reason and felt like I had ruined my entire life. Sadness and regret filled every moment of my day. And breastfeeding? Fuggaetabout! At times, it was nearly impossible to get myself off the couch to tend to my crying infant. Thankfully, Hubs took a 4 week paternity leave and came to the rescue every time. What the heck was wrong with me!! I prayed every night to God to give me the strength and patience I needed to be a good wife and good mother to little P, but every morning I woke up disappointed when the feelings of sadness took over every minute of my day.

On February 3, 2015, one of my worst fears came true: I was diagnosed with post-partum depression. I felt like a failure as a mother and a wife. The one thing that I was biologically destined for was the one thing that was making me incredibly miserable. On the flip side, the diagnosis also brought a sense of relief and hope because I knew that it was the first step to getting better so I could enjoy my new little family. I longed for normalcy in my life and to feel like me again, so here I sit, in the dark on a Wednesday night, with a beer in one hand to maintain some normalcy, while Hubs rocks P to sleep next to me, trying to find myself again, and hoping I can help others that may have gotten lost in their new journey into Motherhood.