Let me start off by saying that I am not afraid of saying the word postpartum and hate the fact that most people look at it and excuse it in an awful way like P.M.S.
According to the wikipedia the exact definition of postpartum is: Postpartum depression (PPD), also called postnatal depression, is a form of clinical depression which can affect women, and less frequently men, after childbirth. Studies report prevalence rates among women from 5% to 25%, but methodological differences among the studies make the actual prevalence rate unclear. Among men, in particular new fathers, the incidence of postpartum depression has been estimated to be between 1.2% and 25.5%. Postpartum depression occurs in women after they have carried a child, usually in the first few months. Symptoms include sadness, fatigue, insomnia, appetite changes, reduced libido, crying episodes, anxiety, and irritability. Current data suggests that 5 to 9 percent of women will develop postpartum depression, but less than one in five of these women will seek professional help. It is sometimes assumed that postpartum depression is caused by a lack of vitamins , but studies tend to show that more likely causes are the significant changes in a woman’s hormones during pregnancy. On the other hand, hormonal treatment has not helped postpartum depression victims. Many women recover because of a support group or counseling.
That said, it’s perfectly normal to go through what I’m going through. Right? Let’s go through the check off list.
Sadness. It’s light but I’ve had my moments. So, CHECK.
Fatigue. I’m not getting enough sleep because Lily wakes up 3-5 times during the night. CHECK.
Insomnia. Sometimes (like last night) at night after a feeding, I can’t fall back asleep and I just lie there crying because of how tired I am. CHECK.
Appetite changes. I think I eat more now than I did when I was pregnant. I tend to go towards food when I’m depressed. CHECK.
Reduced libido. Yup. No interest in sex whatsoever. CHECK.
Crying episodes. I don’t get enough sleep, I’m tired, I hardly get any time for myself. They’ve happened. CHECK.
Anxiety. Not so much.
Irritability. Again, doesn’t lack of sleep and rest cause irritability? CHECK.
It shouldn’t be so alarming for a mom to say she is going through postpartum. After all, in a way, it seems like the normal thing to go through after giving birth. I mean, how could we not?
Just like everything, there are however different levels of postpartum and different ways people deal with it.
This is the way I’m dealing with mine. To write about it here, recognize it and to just deal with it. It’s not like I hate my life or Lily. I am a very fortunate person and have a wonderful life, husband and baby. And, for the most part, I am a happy person. However, things did change very fast as well as did the hormones.
Sometimes I think that maybe I wasn’t yet ready for motherhood because I feel selfish wanting “me” time. But is it selfish to want to be healthy, well rested and to look good and well taken care of as I did before?
How does that saying go? “A happy mother is a happy baby”?
Then I look at Lily and I can’t imagine my life without her. (tears) I love her. And I love Will. I just don’t love myself the way I used to and that makes me feel like I am not loving them as much as I could. It’s hard to love someone if you don’t love yourself.
Everything has been so rewarding lately so how can I feel so…so…old and tired? I feel so old and tired.
At the end of it all, there are worst days and there are better days and just like everything, this too will pass.
In honor of feeling better and normal or better yet, better than normal, I went to get my hair cut today. So here’s to the positive side of things! 😉