For whatever reason I attempted a haircut on a overactive 4 year old in the bathtub, after Matt had left for work, with a semi-restless 8 week old in the bassinet, with only ½ a cup of coffee in my system. I found myself wishing my brother in law, Luke were there to help fix the botched up back, the sideburns that are a wee bit too long and the bangs that are uneven. Regardless, mission accomplish, no more hair in the eyes… for a few weeks.
I woke up this morning with my fingers aching to feel the keyboard at their tips. I read an article the other day that has given me a lot to think about and I needed to get my thoughts out before they left me again. So, as I have calmed a fussy baby, lotioned, dressed, and brushed the teeth of a resistive four year old, I have finally made it back down to my cold cup of joe and my laptop. Even with a fair bit of Noah’s hair still on my clothes and a growling tummy, I’m ready. I have to be, or I won’t get a chance again until 8:12pm tonight and by then I will no longer remember my thoughts or what day it is.
The article was titled “10 Friends Every Parent of a Child with Special Needs Could Benefit From”. As I was reading through the list, I thought of each person in my life who fills those positions, most filling multiple. Since Mae was born nearly 8 weeks ago, life has been chaotic, to say the least. At first I thought it was simply poor coping skills on my part, then I began to wonder if something was wrong with me…
Why is everything so hard all of a sudden?
Why am I crying constantly?
Why am I going between freaking out about my body, to not caring what I look like?
Why am I acting unlike myself?
Why am I not this wonderfully joyful mother, like all those other new mothers who are enamored by their new child?!
Why is there dried banana on the door to Noah’s toy room?
Did I just repeat myself?
My midwife diagnosed what I should have admitted to myself somewhere around week 3 or 4 when the symptoms didn’t improve around week 2 like they were supposed to do. Having one of my closest friends being a retired psychotherapist, and having an undergraduate degree in psychology, I should have known better than to think things would improve.
Postpartum depression is what she called it, and a mix between asymmetrical and melancholic is how I would define my current self.
I’m typically an introvert. I like social outings occasionally, but prefer to lead a quiet life filled with books, writing, enjoying a brew with my husband, and time spent in the kitchen cooking something delicious with my family. Since learning (admitting) of my PPD, I have tried to make an attempt to do more outside of the house…with other people…not just browsing target with two children… but I can’t lie, it has been even more of a challenge to convince myself to do it, even when I know it is the best thing for me… especially with Matt gone at work all day, I need social interaction in my life. Not that the interactions I have with a four year old and a newborn aren’t meaningful, it might be nice to at the very least discuss what another person in the world is making for dinner tonight. Exciting stuff, right!!
The 10 friends I need in my life have totally stepped up, despite the busy lives they lead and the struggles they are facing. I have felt an overwhelming comfort from my beloved mom, sisters, 3 very dear friends, and my unwavering husband. I think that a commitment to being present in a person’s life, not just when things are good or bad, but friends and family that show up during the mundane parts of life as well is somebody who is honestly invested. A simple call on a tough day and talking about their trip to whole foods, a walk at the mall and sharing a good cup of coffee while our kids squirm, being treated to one of the fanciest dinners out I have had in years, and skype calls from nana to sing to the kids… It all adds up and helps to let me (and Matt) know that we have so much support for our new little addition and the challenges we are facing together regardless of how long this battle is to fight.
I’m thankful for you (you all know who you are). Thanks for not forgetting us or just assuming things are fine. You are what get us through.
Day by day.
Nope, no pictures today, because I get to go clean up the top third of the contents of the trash can that are currently on the floor… including coffee grounds. Woo party.