I had Postnatal Depression after my first born and although I have come through it, I still suffer severe anxiety along with chronic fatigue.
Here is my story:
I sailed through my first pregnancy. No sickness, no tiredness, I actually felt great. I was so looking forward to having my first baby!!
The birth however, was horrific!! Over 24 hours in labour, ventouse delivery, 3rd degree tear…
I left hospital the following morning much to the midwives dismay but I was adamant. I just wanted to forget the whole experience.
I arrived home and was straight into doing the washing, scrubbing the floors etc.. basically everything but resting.
I was in agony ( I now know I was also suffering Post-traumatic stress disorder) but kept going.
I just stared at my baby all day. I could not believe how I brought this beautiful, perfect little boy into this world!! I should be the happiest person alive but I wasn’t.
To be honest I don’t remember much of his first few months, It was all a bit of a blur. When I was out (if I managed to get dressed that day) I saw all these “perfect mothers” (I now know there is no such thing) walking around all dolled up I wanted the ground to swallow me up.
I was terrified of leaving my baby with anyone in case something happened to him. I sterilized everything in sight sometimes 2/3 times a day. I did all the night feeds because I didn’t want to miss out on a moment with him. I cooked all his dinners from scratch. He had to have the best of everything, food, clothes… I wanted to be the “perfect mother” so much I was running myself into the ground!!
I was an emotional wreck. I thought to myself everyone felt this way and this is what happens when you have a baby so get on with it.
It wasn’t until Christmas day that year (my baby was 6 months old) that I broke down to my sister and realized this was not normal.
After Christmas I got in touch with Nurture. I started seeing Irene Lowry ( Founder of Nurture), along with medication prescribed by my GP. I’m not going to lie, it was a long time before finding the best medication that suited me but I got there in the end.
I also had hypnotherapy. Because of the birth I had to attend physio once a week in the Rotunda Hospital. The thoughts of stepping into that hospital again brought on a panic attack. I knew I had to get some help. After a few sessions ( I don’t know how she did it but she did) I was able to go back to the hospital and had no problem attending my physio appointments.
Cut a long story short I went on to have my crazy little lady 20 months ago by elective cesarean and really enjoyed the whole experience second time round.
If you or someone you know is suffering just remember you are not alone and you WILL get better.xxx