PND. I *HATE* that. Three little tiny letters, which sum up literally like 0% of, quite simply, what a huuuge, overwhelming feeling PND actually suffocates you with. I remember that impending feeling of ‘shouldn’t I feeeeeeel something else by now?’ when looking at my new baby. I was overwhelmed with what I thought everyone else was thinking of me, that I completely neglected my own feelings. I buried them so deeply, that even I could forget they were there from time to time.
I never addressed my feelings properly first time around. Why, then, was I so caught off guard when those feelings took a hold of me with an even stronger grasp with my next pregnancy, nearly 4 years on?!
I knew I wasn’t coping, though. I knew the signs of depression, but it seemed easier for me and those around me if I just tried to ignore those feelings. I would attempt to carry on as ‘normal’ and hope nobody would notice just how desperately down I was. My eyes tear up even now when I think of how I felt then, and how I buried it. How very sad.
I wish I could go back, and give myself a cuddle, and say all the things that I longed for someone to say to me at the time. But who knows whether it would have even helped back then. That’s the most tricky part.
I recall one day after my second child was born, I was incredibly low. My husband, thankfully was (is) one of the most understanding, loving people on this earth. He was kindly pestering me to open up and talk to him about whatever it was causing me so much pain in my mind. The day came, and boy did I not hold back. I said the most awful things, about how I felt about myself, and about the baby laying there in his moses basket. How could I be thinking and feeling such awful, awful hateful things?!!!!
It scared me. Senseless.
I scared myself.
Do you know what he said to me?
He cuddled me so tightly, with one hand on the back of my head holding me close as I sobbed the most heaving sobs from my heart, and said:
“Everything’s going to be okay”
That moment, right there, was the beginning of my recovery. A long road that has so far been painful, eye opening, incredibly challenging, numbing, and in parts, wonderful. My baby is now 5 years old, and I can safely say that the PND stayed with me in it’s entirety until he was 3.5yrs old. That’s a long time!!!! Then came the guilt. And that hurt. A lot. I remember the day when I woke up and saw him, for what seemed like the first time in his little life. I saw him for the most beautfiul little baby that he was. The most adoring, loving little boy that he is. How did I miss that? What evil spell did this PND put over me that made me miss that? That was my most favourite day. I cried happy tears that day.
If anyone can relate to these feelings, I am sending you the hugest, most heart felt cuddle in the universe. Tears are streaming down my cheeks as I write this now. Some tears are for me and my experience and some are for you. I’m holding you right now and telling you that ‘everything truly is going to be okay’. Please know that. It will be hard, and it’s gonna hurt. But you’re AMAZING. Please reach out and talk to someone. Anyone!!
I need a cuppa. I will say more on my journey through my PND once the rawness from spilling the pain in my heart right here has brought back. This is the very first time I have spoken boldly about it. And do you know something? I have just made myself proud. And real snotty.