We’re well into our Health & Wellness series and today’s post is a good one.
This is something that many women experience yet don’t talk about it.
I give a warm welcome to Misty from The Family Math.
Iíve been sick since April, really sick.
I was taking medication daily until only a little over a month ago. My illness caused insomnia, exhaustion, stomach aches, muscle pain and many other symptoms. And it was all brought on by one little tiny human named Noah.
To be fair, my son canít be blamed for my illness. It was actually an imbalance of hormones that caused my postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety.
After Noah was born on April 3, I had every reason in the world to be happy. I had a new baby boy and a loving husband. Iíd been surrounded by friends and family after the delivery. While I was on maternity leave I interviewed for my dream job and got it.
So why on earth, five weeks into motherhood, was I spending days screaming at my child, crying when I held him, counting down minutes until my husband would be home from work to take him away from me? Why did I have thoughts of throwing my baby on the floor and leaving him there? Why did I want to run away and leave it all behind me?
My physical well-being also suffered. I literally went days without sleeping. I had only gained 20 pounds during my pregnancy, and by my six-week check-up, Iíd lost 50. I couldnít eat. Every time I went anywhere, I felt as if I might have a panic attack at any moment.
Thank God I got the help I needed before anything terrible happened.
Mental illness can be so easily overlooked or downplayed as not being a ďrealĒ health problem. Critics say itís all in peopleís minds (well, yeah, thatís kind of the point) and that itís a cop-out, an excuse to shirk responsiblities. But mental illnesses are very real and can be very dangerous if not treated correctly.
I spent several months on anti-depressants. I was scared to take them, scared that I wouldnít feel anything at all or that I would get addicted to them. And I also really thought that I should be better than that; this was something that could happen to other people, but I was normal. I was sane. I wasnít the kind of person who got depressed.
Now I understand that my postpartum depression was not something I had any control over. I did what I needed to do to be healthy and to be a good mother to Noah. It wasnít easy, and there were times when others questioned my decisions. There were times when I questioned myself.
But 9 months into this motherhood business, I understand that taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your physical health, if not more important. Itís hard to focus on getting the rest of you healthy if your mind is in bad shape.
I came off my meds just before Christmas. Iím not going to lie — itís been really hard. But I have a better idea now of how to take care of myself and my emotions. Iím finally truly happy to be a mom, and Iím making it through a day at a time.
Thank you for sharing this post Misty.
I think there are so many women that will be encouraged by it.
Here are my stats for the week:
Food: going well – same as the last few weeks
Water: still not as great as those first weeks but better than last.
Working out: I’ve done better and am determined to stay on track
Weight: Start weight – 129lbs Today’s weight – 127lbs (gained 1lb)†