This is my first blog post on this site and I will be talking about Postpartum Depression. This is something I’ve been wanting to talk about in the past 3 years. It’s very emotional for me to talk about this but at the same time, it’s cathartic! I want to share this across the globe to moms who are going through the same thing; you are not alone!
Like any other moms, I’ve been through a lot of things during my pregnancy and after my pregnancy. I’ve only discussed most of these things to my husband, and later on, after going through it, I’ve shared it with a few friends. I want to talk specifically about Postpartum Depression or PPD, which is basically depression that occurs after childbirth. PPD can actually affect both sexes – the father and the mother.
How was my pregnancy?
My pregnancy was challenging. In fact, I had Hyperemesis Gravidarum. I was literally throwing up everytime I drink water and eat anything. It came to a point when I had to go to ER because I was getting dehydrated and even worst, I was having migraine. Our bathroom almost became my bedroom, I was just missing a pillow and a blanket. I suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum for almost 8 months of my pregnancy. I had lost 12lbs but I gained it back on my 8th month and gained healthy weight after that, so it was all good!
How was my delivery?
I was exactly on my 40th week when I went for a doctor’s visit. I think I was only 5cm dilated or less than that. My ObGyn said that there’s no point of waiting, so she told me to go home, get my things and head to the hospital right away. Well, I was hungry so my husband and I had ramen before heading to the hospital. Everything happened so quickly! They gave me an epidural and I signed papers for vaginal delivery. The next thing I know, my daughter’s heart rate was dropping and I was getting nervous because a lady from across the room, giving birth, was screaming! My blood pressure was getting higher too! So they decided that I’m having an emergency C-section, I signed another paperwork. It was a good call by my ObGyn because the reason why my daughter’s heart rate was dropping was because she inhaled her meconium or first poop basically. She was in NICU for 4 days. We were both at the hospital for 4 days.
How did I feel about all these changes?
I had mixed emotions, I was happy, excited, but nervous at the same time. There were a lot of things going on on my mind. I don’t know if I’m going to be a good mom. I don’t know if I’m still going to be a good wife. There were a lot of worries! I was in so much pain because I had C-section. I was feeling very emotional that I can’t control it anymore.
How did I know I was having PPD?
I didn’t know until I look it up and started reading blogs and secretly joining a moms group. I did not consult a doctor or seek medical help whatsoever. I did not want to! But I know I was having one.
What were my symptoms of PPD?
There were so much emotions!!! My husband knows that I’m good at controlling my emotions BUT after childbirth, I cannot control any of my emotions and my thoughts. I was surprised myself! That’s when I started looking up about it and I came across a blog about PPD. I’ve never thought it existed. I’ve never thought I will ever experience it!
I found myself crying at night, sometimes, for no particular reason. I was so tired all the time and I was just feeling so depressed. I wanted to scream!!! I get upset with little things like if the dishes are piled up, the laundry isn’t done, or it’s messy around the house. I came to a point where I don’t want to talk to people. In fact, I did not want any visitors in my house. As I’m recalling now, I didn’t even want to go out with friends. I did not even want my husband to go out of the house! I made a big deal literally about everything. One midnight, my husband realized that I wasn’t in the room and he found me almost going out of the house. I was spaced out and I just remembered him asking me, what am I doing and where was I going? I just broke down in tears after.
At one point, I felt so miserable and inadequate! I wanted to be invisible for awhile. When I tried to tell someone about what I was feeling, I was told that it’s normal and that I don’t have my family around me that’s why I’m feeling depressed. Oh hell no! It made me sick to hear that! After that, I’ve never discussed to anyone what I was feeling except for my husband, of course! In fact, I believed during that time that he was also having PPD but he had more control of things.
What was going through my mind?
Evil thoughts were in all corners of my mind! I think this is the part where people will start judging me! I don’t care! I’ll be fearlessly and brutally honest about this. This may stir emotions.
I wanted to disappear forever! I just wanted to end my misery, my life! I wanted to walk out of the door and just disappear in a snap! Tears are falling while I’m writing this. I wanted to quit being a mom! I thought of just flying out to an island where nobody knows me. I wanted to turn back time and had an abortion.
Everytime I hear my daughter crying, I always think that my life is over! I was so exhausted physically, emotionally and mentally. Everytime I hear and see her crying, I wanted to just pick up a pillow and shut her up! I’ve punched a wall at one point. I have screamed at her and I was crying and it made her cry even more. She felt my anger and my frustration. It wasn’t fair for her I know! If I can’t calm her down and I’m carrying her, I just thought I can just drop her to shut her up! I just want to walk away of motherhood. I can function great as a wife but not as a mother. It’s tough! It really is!
I also hated the fact that people kept asking when will I have another baby? Guess what, I won’t have another one and I don’t have to explain it to anybody! I just wanted to punch someone in the face everytime I’m being asked that. I just find it so rude for people to ask that when I just had a baby! It gave me too much anxiety.
Everytime evil thoughts and ill thoughts are running through my mind, I’d always think of the consequences of my action, so I guess I was still sane, maybe 10% of me was sane!
How did I go through PPD?
I think my PPD lasted for a little over a year. I am very thankful I have a great man beside me all the time, my husband. He was such a great support system. No words can express how thankful I am for everything he’s done during those times. When I have depression and anxiety attacks, I’d call him from work and would ask him to come home. Luckily, his work is not too far from home. He kept me sane all the time! He’d take me to dinner, an overnight in San Diego. I would just tell him everything I’m feeling and we’ll talk, and I’ll be fine.
I refused to seek professional help because I believed that I can still control it and my husband was there as a great support system. Maybe I could’ve actually! But another thing that saved me from insanity was my faith. I was raised as a Catholic and I believe that praying can do miracles. Everytime I was having depression and anxiety attacks, I would just pray the rosary and it made me come back to my senses pretty much. I felt comfort in praying. I believe that someone up there is protecting us and guiding us.
I also got some support from my in-laws, especially my mother-in-law. She would stay over at our house and help out with everything and with my little one. I’m forever thankful for them. And of course, my parents from thousands of miles away who I can just video call and talk to whenever I’m feeling down.
Honestly, even after 3 years, I feel like I’m still having it. I feel so stressed out! I’m feeling anxious pretty much about everything around me! I just wanted to get out of the house, just stay in the office the whole day and come back home when my daughter is already sleeping. Don’t get me wrong, my daughter is fun to be with but when she cries for unknown reasons, it drives me crazy! She can go on crying for an hour! I hate sleepless nights.
What’s my message to moms going through PPD?
You’re not alone! I wish someone could’ve warned me or educated me about PPD! Looking back what I’ve been through, I still kind of wished that maybe I could’ve sought professional help. There are things that we go through that we can’t explain and Google can’t explain everything.
If you’re going through PPD right now, find a support system who would really understand you. Not everybody understands what we’re going through. Seriously, sometimes, we don’t even need an advice! We just want someone to listen to us. We’re not competing for a “Best Mother” award. We’re not perfect. I didn’t realize these before. I was trying to be perfect and trying to control everything!
Take some time off, momma! Take that much needed massage and spa, or facial for an hour. Take some short trips with your husband or your partner. You’re doing great at being a mom! You deserve a break, reward yourself! Personally, I don’t like going to parties to relax. That’s not relaxing for me. I just want some peace and quiet time. I’d love to just chill by the beach with my husband.
Our kids are our little blessings but they are our greatest blessings! If you are going through PPD right now, and you need someone to talk to, feel free to message me! I’m here to listen.