I absolutely refused to let myself fall into postpartum depression.
Even though every nurse I spoke with and every poster I saw in the doctors office shouted that it was likely.
Even though I have struggled in my past with depression.
Even though #momlife wasn’t easy.
Even though I was an emotional wreck.
I knew the odds were definitely stacked against me, but I wanted to ENJOY being a momma. I knew depression was something that could easily rob you of valuable memories, and to me, my little bean lighting up my world seemed like something I didn’t want to be distracted from.
But can I get real with you momma?
It isn’t always easy. Not to mention the fact that the moments I felt most overwhelmed completely struck me at the most unpredictable time.
The first time I really struggled with keeping it *together* was the morning of Addie’s first doctor’s appointment. We had just spent a week at the hospital due to unforeseen jaundice, and we were EXHAUSTED. We were glad to finally be home because nurse visits every two hours even into the night got old really quick. *but thank you to those nurses because you took GREAT care of us!* But we were tired! We hadn’t really slept the whole week, and we knew that sleep wasn’t really in our immediate forecast as new parents. I think we stayed up the entire night all the way until the hour before we were supposed to leave for her appointment that next morning. We didn’t even plan to fall asleep, we were just delirious.
I had been nursing every two hours for 30-50 minutes , pumping for 30 minutes immediately after, changing a diaper, and having about 20 minutes to squeeze in a nap or snack before I had to start the cycle all over again. This was my entire life on repeat until she was almost 2 months. All during the day. Even in the night. Even when we had visitors and obligations at other places.
Back to that morning though. . I woke up and we were already severely late. I was dizzy from the sleep deprivation, my chest felt like rocks from overproduction, I was numb from the waste down, I hadn’t showered, and we were late. I woke up our new bundle of joy and threw a pillow at Cody to wake him up. (because that’s what a good wife does. ) I threw clothes on our *now very hungry* baby, and we rushed out the door. I was pumping, putting my shoes on, and feeding a crying baby in the back seat of our car while calling the doctor to let them know we would be late. In the back of my mind, I was thinking about how I left the house a wreck and we were supposed to have company over later in the day, how I couldn’t remember the last time I ate any form of food, but most of all how this was not the way I wanted my morning to go. I knew that my chances of being seen were slim because this was one of those offices that you HAD to be on time. But I figured I had to at least try because my baby needed to have her billiruben checked. She was still kind of yellow, and she hadn’t been going potty normally. I was tired, sore, hungry, and worried. It didn’t hit me until I got to the office with my hair pulled back in my all too famous #mombun, and the front desk lady asked me why I was late.
I have never in my life been publicly emotional.
But it was at that moment I couldn’t hold it in for some reason. All I could say was, “ We overslept”.
As tears streamed down my face, she immediately looked very concerned. Which made me feel incredibly stupid because I was two tears from a breakdown, and she was looking at me like I was the poster child for postpartum depression.
I wasn’t, I was just EXHAUSTED.
Neither my husband nor myself had slept AT ALL since our bundle had made her appearance, we had visitors coming to see Addie constantly, ( and that continued every day for over a month), and I felt like that worst momma in the world because I am never late to ANYTHING.
She kept asking me if I was okay, and I could feel the stares from everyone in that waiting room. I just turned to my husband and with my tear glazed eyes, asked him to speak for me.
Let’s just say that I had to fill out one of those “ how’s mom?” forms, and Addie got to be seen that day.
The thing is, I wasn’t depressed. I knew what that numbing , empty feeling was, and this wasn’t it. This was depression’s happy cousin: overwhelming exhaustion.
My husband and I both had it, and it wasn’t fun.
But I learned something timelessly valuable: “Ive got this.”
And you do too momma.
Regardless of if you are in that fresh new season of motherhood like I am, the ever-changing dew of toddlerhood, the bittersweet days of starting school, the emotional teenage years, or your little birdies have left the nest. . You’ve got this. You are rocking motherhood, and you should be proud! This is something I have to constantly remind myself. You just have to give your best, and that is more than enough. That will look different on different days, but your best is your best. You have to remind yourself that God entrusted you with this precious miracle (or more) to care for, and that He will give you strength when you feel like your tank is depleted.
It’s perfectly okay if you are late to your appointment.
It’s perfectly okay if you have to supplement a little.
It’s perfectly okay if you can’t remember the last time you wore makeup.
You are a momma, and you are BEAUTIFUL. You are doing GREAT. Don’t get upset over what you can’t do 100%, but embrace all the good that you ARE doing. Most of all, know that you’re not alone. I’ve got hundreds of stories to go along with this one of moments where I could have just been down about not having my #momlife together, and my baby is only a few months. I’m sure I am not the only one either !( Feel free to comment your #momfails below!) I just want to encourage you that you are doing great, and you’ve got this momma!