I write because if I didn't I might not survive.
That is a really bold statement but its the truth. I didn't start writing because it always be a dream of mine. And I didn't start because I felt that my family was or is any funnier than anyone else's.
I started writing in order to survive one of the best gifts I ever received.
All of you who are reading this are thinking about all the times your own children or grandchildren nearly drove you nuts, but for me it really almost happened.
After the birth of my first son, Dylan I experienced a short period of postpartum depression. And looking back at that time in my life I should have sought help. But I chalked it up to adjusting to my new role as mommy. After all I loved my baby. I wanted my baby.
Wasn't postpartum depression not wanting or loving your baby?
Time moved on and things began to get better and baby number two arrived. This time the depression was a little bit worse, but I had planned for it come. So I was ready, but even with being ready it was still around longer and meaner than before.
Once I knew baby number three was on his way. I told my midwife what had happened before. How my bouts of sadness lasted longer after each delivery. And my concern that since each time it got worse and lasted longer it would be unmanageable. And with three kids under the age of four this would not do. She suggested that during my eighth month to try some medication as a preemptive strike.
(I would like to take a tiny detour here to say that if your are suffering with a mental health issue don't be ashamed to take or ask for medication. We would think it stupid for a diabetic not to take insulin so why not take the help.)
So I drive around for about two weeks with the prescription in my car afraid to get it filled. I felt like I was admitting that I was a failure at being a mother. That people would say why is she having another baby. But in the end none of that mattered. What mattered was I was making the best choice for me. Happy, healthy mommy equals happy healthy kids!
My sweet Denver was born and for a few months things went smoothly. And I thought we avoided the postpartum depression. And then it hit. And swallowed me whole and refused to let me go. I was powerless. I couldn't come up for air. While I wasn't at anytime suicidal, death would have been a welcomed relief. After months of help,medication and counseling. I was able to breath and it finally let me go.
So imagine my surprise when baby number four was clearly on her way. Eric and I both were terrified that the postpartum would again sink its ugly claws into me again. We did all we could to prepare. I told all of my doctors and nurses and pretty much anyone who would listen. We thought we did everything right,
But it came. It was meaner, stronger and deeper. It had longer claws that sank deeper into me.
It came this time with panic attacks as well. That would come on with such force it could instantly bring me to my knees. I would cling to Eric begging for the end to come. I would feel the need to run away so strongly that it would make me want to vomit. I spent hours on the front porch in a rocking chair regardless of the weather. Countless times I wanted to go to the E.R. I wanted something, anything to save me. I wanted a cure in an instant. And none was found.
Until one day my counselor said to me when your out there on the porch take your lap top and right down how you are feeling. So later when the feeling has passed you can look back and see how you don't really feel those things. They are just attacks from the postpartum. So I did and began sending what I was writing to my family to keep them up to date on what was happening. And even though I was suffering the enjoyed my thoughts and they way I expressed them on "paper".
Several months later and when I was feeling more like myself I began the blog. Mostly out of anger because I didn't know a single mother who had suffered from postpartum depression and panic attacks. And I know a lot of moms! I wasn't ashamed of what I went through so why should I hide. I didn't make this happen to me. It was beyond my control. I am certain that there will be those people who don't understand and will judge ,but if I can make one mom, one lost suffering mommy feel like she is not alone then I can take the criticisms.
But what I discovered was I have a deep love of words and writing. And while I never want to go through that again and wouldn't wish that on anyone, but if I hadn't I may have never discovered this hidden gift. I know it a cliche to say that you often have to go through hard things in life to find the in this case, for me it was true.