I’ve always known that life takes unexpected twists and turns and we don’t know what the future holds. Since becoming a mommy this truth has been illuminated to the nth degree. For me, the twist of all twists was this ugly thing called Postpartum Anxiety. The world tells you that motherhood is the most surreal, joyous and rewarding experience of your life. So, you can imagine the distress when it ends up being the darkest experience of your life, one that leaves you wondering if you’ll ever be whole again. However, I am officially kicking PPA and starting this blog to walk myself through the darkest of times, to where I am now and to wrestle with the terrifying thought of doing it all over again. Keep reading . . .
I’ve wanted to start writing for quite awhile now. At one point in time I was pretty into writing poetry and journaling. The past 2 ½ years all I’ve been writing are online discussion posts and essays and periodical journal reviews. Ugh. But, today marks a new beginning for me! I’m graduating with my Master’s in Counseling and I'm DONE! This was a journey I began 8 months before my son was born. A journey that I clung to despite pregnancy woes, two moves, and postpartum anxiety. A journey that ultimately ends today with a big, loud thud.
So… with grad school behind me and all this “free time” on my hands I’ve decided to invest in this blog in hopes that it will be therapeutic for myself and my husband as we walk together through the struggle and unknowns of quite possibly the greatest decision we have yet to make in our lives. To have or not to have another child.
I firmly believe this decision is even bigger and weightier than the decision to have a first child. Why, you ask? Because it now affects three people’s lives and not just two. For those of us (10-20% of mommas) who suffered a perinatal mood disorder we have a whole other list of anxieties, considerations, worries, doubts and fears associated with this decision.
No, this blog is not only for selfish reasons, although it might appear quite self- absorbed. I also want to share my story, both past and ongoing, so that those who have suffered with me can learn, grow and hopefully have some questions answered when it comes to the crossroads of … The S E C O N D child question and the bazillion other doubts floating through your mind as a momma and wife and perhaps PPA survivor. This decision is highly personal and each person’s circumstances are incredibly unique and complex. So, I ask that there be NO JUDGMENT here. One of my new pet peeves is others thinking they have the right to tell you how many kids you should have, how far apart in age they should be, right down to the method of contraception to use and when to stop, by golly! And, by living in Mexico I have the added privilege of experiencing the absurd bluntness of my Mexican friends on a regular basis. Oh, the joy.
So, walk with me.
If you are currently suffering from a perinatal mood disorder:
You are not alone. You are not to blame. You will be well.