Hiya, yet again it’s been a while.
Took me a bit of balls to write this post, I have the words in my head, but not sure how they’re going to play out so here we go. It’s a bit too long for an instagram post, and being World Mental Health Day, I thought today was a good day to write about Post Natal Depression and my experience with it.
Before I had my beautiful Nelly, I must admit, I hadn’t had much experience with anxiety/depression, I hadn’t been around anybody who had it (that I was aware of anyway), you see, with these illnesses, you don’t walk round with a cast on, or you don’t get a wheelchair, so people don’t tend to know you have it, unless you talk about it, but then you don’t want to be a burden to anyone.
The first few weeks after having her, I knew it was tough, of course, I always knew it would be, but I kept having this drowning feeling, like I’m in the middle of a deep swimming pool, can’t reach the floor and I don’t know how to get out of it. It was actually my mum and my sister who sat me down, and asked me if I was okay, and in that moment, I knew I wasn’t. But just saying those words ”I’m not okay” felt like a weight lifted off my shoulders straight away. There are so many emotions, I felt bad because I knew how lucky I was to have my beautiful girl, I felt guilty for feeling this way as I know there are people who can’t have children, and what a fortunate position I’m in. I felt guilty because my Nelly is the most precious little girl, and she is so good, and I was in love with her the second they put her on my chest, so why was I feeling like this?
You see, depression, my depression anyway, isn’t me sitting around crying all day. I don’t have suicidal thoughts, I just simply feel like there’s no way out sometimes. Like I said before, that drowning feeling and I can’t catch my breath. I have had days where I’ve sat crying all day, of course, and I understand that’s part of being a new parent as well, as it is bloody hard.
So my first step was to make an appointment at the doctors. Again, this took a pair of balls, and especially to actually turn up to the appointment. The first thing I said was, ”first of all you need to know, how I’m feeling, is nothing to do with my daughter, as she is the best thing that has ever happened to me”, and it’s true, ironically post natal depression has nothing to do with my feelings for her, it’s my feelings for me, and most of the time everything around me. So anyway, she referred me to a psychiatrist .. that word ‘psychiatrist’ it’s horrible isn’t it? Yet it’s the same as a psychologist, the only difference is the psychiatrist can prescribe medicine. So anyway, I saw her, I had a good cry as it just all came out, and she prescribed me some tablets.
Now I’m not going to say the tablets helped straight away, cos they didn’t. But the feeling of validity, that what I’m feeling is completely normal, and it’s okay to talk about it, that made me feel better.
So yeah, I’ve been on them since May, and they are helping a bit, getting back to work is helping alot too, and getting back into a routine is good too.
I still have my bad days where everything is too much, but I know I can talk about my feelings now, and there is nothing wrong with that.
It’s weird, in today’s world, it feels completely fine to talk about how good you’re feeling, and what amazing holiday you are going on, what car you are going to but, all the good stuff, yet we feel like anything negative, if we’re feeling down, having a bad day, that’s alot harder to talk about, you don’t want to feel like you’re ”attention seeking” or anything like that.
I feel like I need to say on this post, I haven’t written it to make people feel sorry for me, or to seek attention. If by writing this I can let at least one person know they are not alone in how they feel, then it’s worth posting in my eyes.
It’s okay to not be okay. It’s okay to talk. If anybody ever wants to talk about anything, or even come round my house, have a cuppa and not talk at all, then please, I’m only a message away.