Postpartum anxiety and depression

Where to start? I haven’t blogged in months and a lot has changed since having miss Olivia.

Our experience in the hospital wasn’t ideal since she had to be in the NICU right after her birth. It was hard seeing her hooked up to iv’s and on a breathing machine that first 24 hours of life but she was a fighter and improved so quickly.

Our first few weeks home were the hardest! Things finally started to get easier around 3 months. I was finally feeling like I was getting the hang of being a mom.

I could touch on a million different subjects about being home with a newborn for the first time but I’ll focus on my mental health since that’s why I started this blog to begin with.

My mental health was plummeting fast the weeks after I had her. The pressure’s as a new parent, lack of sleep, changing hormones and no support from family (since they all lived almost 2 hours away) made for a really bad mix for me. I was struggling hard. I cried almost daily. I started to fear night time. Around 3pm I’d get this feeling of fear inside me and I’d want to cry (and usually did) because I was terrified of night time and having to wake up so many times to feed her and knowing I wouldn’t get much sleep. I wasn’t enjoying being a parent at all. I wasn’t enjoying my daughter even though I’d waited months for her arrival. I wondered why I gave up such an easy life before her for this. I was extremely depressed and had bad anxiety once again. Something I feared would happen after her birth, given my past of having the two. I called my OB to talk to them about it. I was put on Zoloft, once again. As much as I was hoping I’d never need it again I knew I needed to give it a shot. I wasn’t doing well and I wasn’t able to fight this bout of anxiety and depression on my own and also try to take care of my daughter. Me and my husband also talked and decided moving back to our hometown would be best for our family at the time. I knew being around family and having that help and support would be beneficial for my mental health. The second we decided to move back I felt instant relief. As much as we loved living in Columbus and knew we’d miss it, we knew this was the right thing to do.

We moved back when Olivia was 3-4 weeks old. She is now almost 4 months old and we are all doing so much better! The mix of taking Zoloft and having help and support from family and friends here has done wonders for my mental health. I also give credit to my hormones starting to slowly balance back out, being able to start exercising regularly again, getting more sleep and Olivia getting older. But I know if I didn’t choose to go back on an anti depressant and move back home things wouldn’t be as good as they are now. I have to add I did have an incredibly supportive husband during all of this. I just needed more.

Everyone’s postpartum experience is different and I wanted to share mine. My body was healing well but my mental health was getting worse. So from the outside I looked fine but on the inside I was struggling. I did what I needed to do to improve my mental health and be the best mom I could be. Our family as a whole is much happier and we are exactly where we should be at this stage in our lives.

At almost 4 months postpartum I feel like I do still need Zoloft for awhile longer. I’ll see how I’m feeling each month and go from there. I’m not going to rush myself because I want to be the best mom and wife I can be. Anti-depressants don’t have to be forever but they can help us out during hard times in life. I’m thankful to have had the support and resources I needed to get through this.

Postpartum is hard and the help women receive here in the US is sad. We have monthly/weekly visits with our OB during pregnancy and once the baby is here we see them once 6 weeks later and are expected to just be ok. We need more than that! I wish it would change because so many women suffer. Thank god for facebook groups. I’ve found a lot of help in those too.

Having a daughter has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. Olivia is the best and we have so much fun together. I can’t wait to keep watching her grow and learn. I’m really starting to enjoy being a stay at home mom to. Thanks to my husband for working so hard to provide for us and making that possible.

Thanks for reading. I’m trying to find more time to blog but with an infant it’s hard to find time these days. I’ll slowly get my creativity back 🙂

Leave a Comment