Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Bawling My Eyes Out

My sweet chili peppers.
7 times I have gone through PPD, with each baby it became progressively worse.
They're worth it. They're definitely worth it. I'm glad I'm their Mama!

I've been crying uncontrollably for the past 5 minutes and decided to write it down instead of keep on crying all night. Good idea right? Getting it out on paper always seems to help me.


So... the bawling. What is it from this time, you ask.

Tonight I happened to look on www.ksl.com and noticed a link to a story on postpartum depression. I clicked on it, watched it, and from there went to a good website on postpartum depression called pospartumprogress.com.  It is not a good website, it is an excellent website.  I've been there before, I vaguely remember, but tonight I clicked on this link talking about the 6 Stages of Postpartum Depression, and as I read it the tears started falling and I couldn't help but sit and bawl my eyes out.

The first five stages were fine. I completely related with each and every one. The sixth stage is where I lost it. I have for a very long time known that my postpartum depression had been tainted with an extra shot of PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder). I have come to a sane enough point to be able to identify that, and also identify most of the reasons behind it, but it has always baffled me why I still feel so traumatized when most of the things that traumatized me really have been dealt with by now. I had always attributed it to things that happened during the pregnancy and a short bit of extreme trauma in the weeks after the baby was born. Step number 6 really helped me understand why, and I can completely see now that a part of my PTSD has been caused by the trauma of dealing with the PPD and the changes it brought with it.

It just feels so good to know that I'm not the only freak in the world who has dealt with this to such an extreme level. It feels so relieving to know that there is an end, somewhere. There is healing. There has to be if others have healed.

One of the big things that brings me immediately back to the pain and trauma that I went through and opens the wounds up fresh and raw again is hearing that another woman is dealing with the same thing and going through postpartum depression.  I want to help, and hopefully I have been able to help a few. But I know I cannot erase the hurt and take away the pain for them. I know I cannot shield and protect them from everything they will go through. I cannot help and support them in all the ways I wish I could, and it breaks my heart. It is one of the reasons I am so open with this issue on my blog, because I don't ever want anyone else to feel as alone and isolated and hurt and hopeless as I did, without them knowing that someone else understands, someone else has been through this, and someone else cares.

So, for you fabulous mothers out there going through this little piece of hell... please know my heart is aching for you. Know that you are in my prayers, and know that I am only a phone call or email away.  Also, please take a moment to look over this website.  It really has an enormous amount of valuable help and information, both for you, and for your family.
 
One of the things that jumped out at me as I went through several of the pages of the website tonight was this sentence.

 ...the most common symptom of postpartum depression is not sadness at all- it is anxiety and agitation … and while many women who struggle might have periods of sadness, depression and tearfulness, the overwhelming symptoms that cause them great pain are difficulty concentrating, excessive worry, high level overwhelm, racing thoughts and difficulty sleeping. 

And I will expand on this... that the agitation mentioned frequently involves frustration, irritation, and lashing out at your children or husband. 

One of the difficult things is identifying that yes you HAVE postpartum depression, especially if you aren't feeling particularly sad or "depressed" in the way it is often depicted. You may not have an Eeyore face or a constant raincloud over your head... not everyone does. But if you are even wondering if you have PPD... there is a good chance you do. And a good chance you will NOT be able to just "get over it" on your own without a bit of understanding and support.

I'm here for you. Please call or email. It is the ONE thing that I can feel good about from the whole experience... helping someone else who may be dealing with it. 

May you find peace,
Rachel

8 comments:

  1. Rachel Thanks for posting this It really explains alot as to why I feel very overwhelmed and irritated for no reason and why I just don't want to get out of my chair sometimes so I just wanted to say thankyou and I LOVE YOU as I sit here and cry.
    Your Sista

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  2. I'm so proud of you! This sounds trite, I know, but you are really taking a horrific experience and making a difference in others lives.

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  3. go rachel! you are a postpartum warrior! im so proud of how far you have come and how brave you are for being willing to do it again each time you carry a child. women are amazing and you are one very amazing woman. i really hope you end up researching the benefits of placenta encapsulation if you ever decide to have another baby. i think it will help so much with what you go through. as well as love and support from friends and family:) -holly

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  4. I love what you posted and think that it is amazing for you to post this for others. I too have been in this situation and it is horrific. But, you are right there is an end and it does help to know that you are not the only one that has gone through this. Thank you for posting this, it has also brought me to tears reading it.

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  5. Thank you Rachel! I'm definitely going to check out that site. The more I can learn about this, the better. And the quote you posted about not always feeling depressed, but feeling agitation etc is so true! I'm glad you're willing to share. I'm hoping to learn from this and help others as you've helped me.

    Btw, I love the concept of your blog. What a great idea. Keep it up

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  6. Can you feel my hug from here, Rachel dear?!

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  7. Maria Boss LewisJune 22, 2011 at 9:06 PM

    I am always so inspired when you write! As always, I love your blog!!

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  8. I didn't know you had this blog, but i am so glad i noticed it today. It has helped me so much just reading it.

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