This is the face of postpartum depression and anxiety.
Here I am. Ready to lay it all out for you. Postpartum life... it’s a story filled with a plethora of emotions ranging from beautiful, perfect, pride, sadness, anger, loneliness. You name it, it’s been felt. It’s not always puppies and pastures. Its a wake up every day and make a decision to see the best in yourself even when you are rocking an adult diaper with a pad the size of Texas. #killingit
This go around, I am in a much better place. Those of you who know me well, know that I struggled with postpartum anxiety and depression with my first son. Let me let you in on a little secret... 100% of the time, it’s not just the hormones causing these scary confusing emotions. It’s circumstances like lack of sleep, feelings of inadequacy, and grieving your self centered life that make you incapable of dealing with the anxiety or sadness that was already there. When you don’t have kids, all these quirky things you do to manage the anxiety and sadness are easy and manageable because your life is about you. When a child comes, using the restroom by yourself is a luxury. So you have these hormones making you feel things very intensely and then add on feelings and issues that were already there but your coping mechanisms can’t be employed. This is where it gets dark. This is where they tell you it gets better... but does it ever? Take a shower, you’ll feel better. Go for a walk, you’ll feel better. It feels like the walls are caving in and you are drowning but nothing can help or save you. You wake up the next morning after no sleep and promise yourself, WILL yourself, that today... is going to be different. Today is the day that you will be the mom and person you want to be. But deep down in that dark pit in your stomach... no amount of wanting or willing can get you through this. It’s not a choice you push your way through. Que the shame... oh shame. My least favorite feeling... I don’t need anyone to shame me because I do it enough for myself. No one is harder on me than myself. So now, I feel shame. You are a terrible mother. You are a terrible wife. And the spiral begins. The hours seem like days and my inability to cope amplifies throughout the day. I become impatient, anxious, nauseated, weepy, angry, and hopeless. Thinking back about this time and who I was... I really wish I could give that Bree a hug. And say THIS IS HARD. You aren’t alone. You don’t hate your child or resent them. You are a good mom. You are enough. You are not alone as isolating as it may seem. I’m talking about this because I want you to know I am here. I want y’all to see my struggles even though I am pretty adamant about keeping my personal life personal. But this is what women need to hear. Even if one woman reads this and knows that I stand with them, this post and my naked vulnerability is worth it. Let’s be kind to each other and love each other. Let’s lift each other up. See a counselor. It changed my life. It helped me communicate what I needed to those around me. Here are some we love:
Dallas Postpartum Support- Kimberly Schieffer Kertsburg
Courtney Butts with Dallas Birth
Push Counseling & Coaching
Bina Bird- Haslet Counseling
Behavioral Health Dallas-Katie Sardone and staff
Dr. Bree Katz is a graduate from Parker University with a Doctorate of Chiropractic and two Bachelor of Science degrees in Psychology and Health and Wellness. She is a local Family Chiropractor at Uprise Chiropractic in Dallas with an emphasis on pregnancy and children.