Monday, December 19, 2011

Posting on Post-Partum

I feel compelled to discuss something this week that probably affects more women than you know.  Women who seem perfectly content and happy.  I want to talk about post-partum depression. 

I think I've read about a handful of celebrities that have suffered in silence from this but it seems like no one talks about when they're going through it.  I want to change that.  So here goes...

Hi, my name is Jesse and I think I have post-partum depression.  No, I've not been to a doctor and received an official diagnosis but Dr. Google seems to think this is what's going on...along with a possible brain aneurysm and a few types of cancer and maybe an enlarged prostate.   

I used to think that this wasn't such a real thing.  I'm sure a lot of people think it should be better titled "Can't Get Your Shit Together Disease."  Let me be the first to tell you that this is serious stuff and so beyond not being able to get your shit together. 

I have had several friends who have shared with me that they suffered from PPD after the birth(s) of their child(ren).  It occurs to me now that they never talked to me about it at the time.  Or maybe they did, but I didn't realize what they were experiencing because I had never experienced it myself. 

Here's the thing:  if you see me on the street, at the store, at story time, etc, you won't notice it.  I'm pretty good at putting on a big smile or at least a sarcastic grin and dealing.  But everyone has their breaking point.  Apparently I hit mine this past weekend.

My poor husband arrived home to find me in a wreck on the floor (now I see where Claire gets her skillz).  He demanded that I pack my things and go have a mommy weekend to recharge.  That sounded awful.  What?  Really?  A weekend away to rest and relax sounds terrible?  I'll tell you why:  I already feel pretty isolated and lonely (no sad music please) out here in Where-ever-the-f-this-is where we live.  I didn't want to leave my babies(the very babies that were driving me crazy) for even an hour.  I just wanted to sleep. 

My precious baby, now 4 months, is extremely attached to me.  I mean that literally.  She nurses  Oh, and did I mention all.night.long.too.  If she wasn't so damn cute I'd think she wanted me dead.  Her incredibly chubby cheeks are where she keeps her super powers.  You can't deny those cheeks.  Sleep deprivation like this has been likened to torture.  Like actual torture, not like "OMG, they didn't have my color at the nail salon so instead of a pedicure in Linkin Park After Dark, I had to get Midnight in Moscow."  Although I'm sure that would be tough. 

So, instead of leaving all weekend I took two morning naps, I went shopping(which may have been crazier than the craziest I've ever been), I had lunch with a friend and her sons, I shopped some more and then I went to a movie.  It was amazing.  Did you know it takes less than a minute to get out of your car when you don't have a stroller and a toddler to herd? 

The weirdest thing happened while I was running amuck in the wilds of CoMo.  I missed my children.  I wondered what they were doing.  I couldn't wait to get home, but I took my time and savored the minutes as they ticked away as this may not happen again for a while.

When I got home I couldn't wait to hug those little girls.  And I did hug them, until they no longer wanted to be hugged.  I have koala-type children (huggy, not fur-covered and Australian) so that's pretty significant. 

Long story, well, I guess long, I am still in the midst of this whole PPD thing.  It's rough at times.  I hope my hormones will fix all this when they finally even out.  All of this wouldn't be so bad if I didn't desperately love my children and want more for them than I ever had (and that's saying a lot).  If I didn't care about them I wouldn't try to hide it when I need to just have a good cry, the ugly kind.  You know the ugly cry.  If I didn't care about them I would just switch on the TV, grab a box of bon-bons and eat myself into a chocolate-induced coma.  That's what stay-at-homes do, right?  Ha. If you think that, I invite you to blow it out your ass.

Television is an evil mistress in this house.  Claire still gets to have the TV on for an hour a day so that I can feed her partner in crime.  This week the worst thing ever came on Sprout.  A Caillou Christmas movie.  Sprout has decided it's war apparently and is offering this movie in a 6-hour marathon format on Christmas Day. Alright, Sprout.  I'll see your marathon and I'll raise you a house full of Nanas, Aunties, Uncles, and cousins who will distract Claire from anything even resembling a balding, Canadian, whine-bag of a cartoon.  Check and mate.  Honestly, though, the Caillou movie isn't any worse than the Rudolph movie from my childhood.  Man, that thing's disturbing.  Happy Holidays to you all! 


  1. I'm here from Jen's link on facebook -- and I'm glad you're sharing this. If I'd been blogging after my first daughter was born, I don't think I'd have had the guts to admit it. Because it feels so...vulnerable? You suddenly have to face it when you say it out loud. I didn't want to face it, and it clouded the first months of my daughter's life in my memory. Not fair.

    But facing it might be the swift kick in the you-know-whats that PPD needs to move along. Or at least might make you feel like you're not so much at its mercy.

    I wish you the best...and I honestly do think that writing about it (and the awful terrorist, Caillou) is cleansing. Keep going :)

    (and I swear: my word verification to submit this comment is BALLS. As in, I praise your cajones for getting this out in the open ;)

  2. It is vulnerable. But yes, there's healing in all this for me. Makes me feel a little less alone.