"It" - My Struggle with PPD

February 5, 2015



 



I wrote a post a few weeks ago prepping my amazing readers for this very post and every time I sat down to begin writing this post I stopped. Why? Honestly, it’s embarrassing, but I know my heart with this blog has always been to remain open, honest, and real. Well, here it goes. {Don’t judge.}

Monday, February 3, 2014 I gave birth to my second miracle, my precious Brayden, and my heart grew even larger than I ever could've imagined. My little family was complete. I was now surrounded by 3 blue eyed men and I couldn’t be happier.

I love the newborn stage. The sweet scent of new baby, the cuddles, the night feedings, the 12 weeks of maternity leave, the stages of figuring each other out; all of it. I love it.

Then it became time to go back to work. The return of early mornings, busy schedules, less time to love on my boys, nonstop go go go go go, rushed dinners, bath times, bed times, late nights, sleepless nights, weekends full of cleaning, laundry, dinner prepping…..and it just continues over and over and over.

Every mother is different, but for me returning to work with both boys brought on an overwhelming sense of stress. There were fewer hours in the day and more things to get done. It took me weeks to get my routine set in place and once I did things got better.

The routine was set, things started to smooth out, and I began operating in autopilot; just coasting through each week. I was content. However, content doesn’t always mean happy for me.

My patience were thin, I was snapping at my husband almost on a daily basis, I was yelling at my oldest son for the littlest of things, I was pushing away friendships, I started staying home from church on Sundays to get stuff down, I was having a hard time waking up in the mornings, I didn’t feel like getting myself ready like normal, I didn’t want to get out of the house to do anything, I didn’t feel like hanging out with anyone; I just wasn’t me. However, at the time, I didn’t realize I wasn’t me. I just felt blah.

The holidays were approaching and I knew that my abundant joy of Christmas would perk me up. At least that’s what I thought.

We got through Thanksgiving and then we started our Christmas traditions, but I just wasn’t feeling any Christmas spirit. My sweet hubby decorated our Christmas tree, planned Christmas movie nights, and tried many things to perk my usual Christmas ridiculousness. Then one night I crawled into bed and told him I’m just not myself. He said he knew already. The next morning I stopped, thought about all the things I had been feeling or not feeling, recounting certain situations and how I handled them, thought about my attitude, and started to recognize that “it” was back. The “it” that takes away the control I prefer to have on my life, the “it” that makes me feel like less of a wife, less of a mother, less of woman, the “it” that causes me to hurt those around me, the “it” that causes me to fail and feel like a failure, the “it” that takes months of my happiness,  the “it” the creeps up on me slowly, the “it” that takes a while for me to recognize, the “it” that’s embarrassing to admit, the “it” that makes the realities of motherhood hard to swallow some days; the “it” of many things.

The “it” that is postpartum depression.

Yep, I’m one of every 8 mothers that have experienced postpartum depression with both of my boys. It’s embarrassing, but it’s real life. It happens and I’m thankful that I’m not alone. I will admit though that very few people know that I’ve ever suffered from PPD so sharing it on my blog is hard, but I want other mothers out there to know you’re not alone and the struggle is real.

For me recognizing it is a huge step in the right direction to work through it. Both times recognizing it helped me to control my symptoms a little better, but unfortunately I had to have a little bit of medicinal help to get me through all of dark clouds that PPD brings me. That has been the hardest part to admit, but if I’m going to be real, I’ll be real all the way.

I have always had a hard time accepting that a pill can make me happy. I serve a God who gives me unspeakable joy and He’s always been my strength. So, even in the darkest times of my life I refused any kind of medicinal assistance to help me. I always felt like taking antidepressants would make me feel like a crazy person.

It wasn’t until I called my doctor’s office with my first son and talked to a nurse whom I adored and trusted. I told her all I was feeling, I told her how I didn’t want crazy pills to help me, but I needed some advice to push through the funk. She gave me the best advice that I still cling to. She made me realize that asking for help, recognizing I need help, and taking something to help doesn’t make me crazy. It makes me humble; it makes me a good mother, a good wife, and a good woman because I want to better myself so that I could be the best I can be to those around me.

It took me a couple weeks to fill that prescription the first time and I only took it for a couple months and my husband was the only one who knew because I was so embarrassed. This time I called my doctor, got the prescription filled right away, and decided to be open about my struggle with PPD. I want other mothers who may be feeling the same way to find encouragement and maybe find the strength they need to make the same call to their doctor for help. I still get embarrassed filling the prescription each time, I still get embarrassed talking about it, I’m still hesitant to even post this blog, but I know I’m not alone.

Every mother struggles differently, but whatever your struggle, please know you’re not alone and even more importantly; please know it’s ok to ask for help. You may be reluctant or embarrassed to admit it like I was, but it’s important to call your doctor if you notice any of these symptoms.

And remember this….you’re an amazing mother, an incredible woman, and you’re doing a wonderful job! You are so loved!

xoxo,
Krista



For PPD support please visit Postpartum Support International or contact your local doctor.


A couple encouraging songs for you.

"In The End"
Can't catch a break
You've had your fill of old clichés
Like "life is hard but God is good"
And even though it's true
It won't stop what you're going through
I wish that I could say it would

But He's outside of what you feel
It might not make sense
But one day it will

There's coming a day the sun will always shine
He's gonna wipe away every tear from your eyes
Hold on my brother, things are gonna better
You're gonna smile again
Cause we win in the end

Oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh

You're standing still
Life has handed you a bitter pill
Once again you're on your face

You've got questions
Plenty of secret confessions
Wondering if you've run out of grace

But He's outside of what you feel
This life is just a moment
But our forever is sealed, oh yeah

There's coming a day the sun will always shine
He's gonna wipe away every tear from your eyes
Hold on my brother, things are gonna better
You're gonna smile again
Cause we win in the end

It won't be about streets of gold, pearly gates
Harps and wings, diamond lakes
All I know is that He's gonna hold you, hold me
Heartache will disappear
Questions will become clear
Life will all make sense in the end

Oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh
We win in the end
Oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh

There's coming a day the sun will always shine
He's gonna wipe away every tear from your eyes
Hold on my brother, things are gonna better
You're gonna smile again
Cause we win in the end

Oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh
We win in the end
Oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh

Glory, glory hallelujah
Glory, glory hallelujah
Glory, glory hallelujah
We win in the end

Glory, glory hallelujah
Glory, glory hallelujah
Glory, glory hallelujah
We win in the end
We win in the end

"When I Leave The Room" 

Good night
Looks like we made it through the day
The moon sighs
And I know that we're okay

Sleep tight
I love to watch you drift away
I would come with you but on my knees I'll stay

Good night
Five little fingers holding mine
Take flight
Into your dreams and lullabies

There's nothing more that I can do
But just fall more in love with you
And ask the angel armies to stand by
When I leave the room

I'm gonna fail you
I already have
Ten thousand times
I will fall down flat

You'll have a seat in the front row
Of everything I don't know
And all I'm trying to be
You'll see

Good night
There will be storms that we come through
In time
We will slay dragons me and you

I'll always wanna hold you tight
Keep you safe with all my might
So I will leave Jesus next to you
When I leave the room

And you will run ahead
As if you know the way
And I will pray more
Then one should have to pray

There will be words we can't take back
Silences too
And I'll be on my knees
You'll see

One night
When I am old and unsteady
You'll want me to fight
But I'll tell you that I'm ready

When there's nothing left to do
I will still be loving you
Then you'll fold your fingers into mine
And I will let Jesus hold you tight
When I leave the room

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1 comments:

Anonymous said...

Krista....this is one of my favorite posts from you -- EVER! After I had Hannah I had terrible PPD. I knew the day I had her that something just wasn't right but I kept telling myself to get over it and just be happy. Then, when she was about two weeks old, she started whimpering in her crib and laid there paralyzed and thought "Cayla if you just kill yourself you won't have to get up with her." Once that thought processed in my head I immediately got up, grabbed my baby girl and started sobbing on my knees with her that God would forgive me for such a horrible thought. The hardest part of PPD I think (as you said) is not being okay with taking anti depressants and wanting to rely fully on God. I remember waiting in my dr office and saying to myself "Cayla why can't you just be happy? You have a healthy, beautiful baby girl....why can't you be happy like Krista?" (haha, you KNOW how much I look up to you Krista!!!) So, for me to read this post...and to see that I'm normal like you...really means a lot! I think that embracing that you went through this in your life will mean so much to the dozens of other women around you who I'm sure have also had a similar experience. You are loved, you are a wonderful wife and mother, and you are brave.

--Cayla Shekell

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