To anyone who asks me the story of Boss's birth, they get the happy version. I leave out a few details. You know, clean it up for polite company. Only 20 minutes of pushing! I want to send a fruit basket to the delivery team! She was as loud and pink and hungry as my other kids born at term! Etcetera. I leave out that I couldn't hold my baby for an eternity* because a pediatric team intercepted her. I leave out that she didn't cry at first. (There is nothing so terrifying as a silent room when a baby is born.) I leave out that part of labor when they performed a "version" on me which, besides being hell on Earth, is basically grown adults pushing the entirety of their body weight onto my abdomen in an attempt to turn the baby. I leave out the frustration of a nurse removing the binder that held her in place, at which time she went back to breech and I was briefed on c-section protocol. I leave out my current terrors of SIDS and frustrations with jaundice and eternal boob pain hell. Yes, I'm joyful about the baby but I've also got some cogs in place for postpartum depression.
My hormones are like Silly Oprah.
I'm not usually a depressed person, you see. I take what comes my way and deal with it. If I were male, I'd model myself after the Marlboro man or the Dos Equis guy, all stubble and grit and whiskey. This weird postpartum feeling has nothing to do with my grit or even my actual circumstances though. It feels like a real chemical reaction in my body, like when you drink warm milk and have to pee. It's not my weakness. It's my body that has been through a bit of trauma and transition lately (Seriously, I've lost 21 pounds in five days. I wouldn't be surprised if I sprouted a unicorn horn tomorrow and learned Russian by Monday.) But still, I can't help but feel weak.
Things that have not helped ward off postpartum depression:
- Flowers came for me yesterday, but the florist accidentally sent a funeral arrangement
- Steel Magnolias was on last night and it was either watch that or a Tosh episode I've seen twice (tempting)
- As soon as I bragged that Boss didn't have jaundice, the universe cackled and she turned as orange as a pumpkin. Today her pediatrician threatened to sent her back to the hospital. Here she is in her sci-fi tanning bed blanket:
I mean, things are great. Hubs is a rad dad. As far as men go, I got m'self a catch. Someone did compare him to Bates on Downton Abbey the other day, despite my protests that he's my spicy mediterranean lover. What do you think? We're still the stuff, right? I think we have a few years before the actor my husband most resembles is a 60-year-old Englishman. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
See? There I go. I'll be thinking about something totally norms. TV, trying to remember when the neighbor's birthday party is, calculating how many glasses of wine I can fit into my My Fitness Pal diet and bam, CRY CRY SOB CRY.
Is anyone else out there feeling this way? This being my third round at the postpartum bar, I know logically in my mind this is how five days out feels. I know if I start plotting murder or planning own demise it's time to call the midwife and haul myself in for a work over. I know that I'm supposed to rest and order the people around me to make with the vacuum. It just sucks that you wait for the baby for months and endure the labor and go through all the shit to get to the baby, then you have the baby and nature plays this cruel trick.
I know that it will pass. In the mean time, I'm just going to keep sweating through my ears and staring at the baby. She's the cure.
*15 minutes is nothing, but say that when it's your baby
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