PND and Me

Let's be honest, I have postnatal depression.

For me (because everyone's experience is different), postnatal depression:
doesn't mean that I do not love my kids
doesn't mean that I did not bond with them
doesn't mean that I want to harm them

It doesn't usually mean that I want to harm myself.

It doesn't mean that I am a bad mum, no matter how many times I tell myself that I am.

It doesn't mean that I'm not happy sometimes. My kids bring me so much joy I can't explain that love and happiness that washes over me.

For me (because everyone's experience is different), postnatal depression:

means that I am always on edge, teetering on a precipice
I flounder and panic at 'normal' and everyday activities
I over-think and over-analyse everything - from what meal I'm cooking to the never-ending question of whether I should work or not

It means that all my emotions are at the surface, ready to explode in laughter, anger, tears or worse...

I have had postnatal depression twice (because each experience is different). The first time round I think it actually started before birth but was officially diagnosed late. The second time it didn't occur until 6 months after birth but I acted quickly.

I have numerous posts written in drafts. Raw, emotional posts that I have been too scared to publish.

So why I am sharing this now?

First, this is a record my my children. I don't want to gloss over the hardships in life and I don't want them to see any discrepancies between my 'blog life' and 'real life' that would make them doubt everything else I write about.

Second, I don't want to lie to anyone who reads my blog. I don't want to pretend that I'm always OK. I don't want to lie to myself.

And lastly, the logical and positive thinking part of my brain wants to help defeat the stigma surrounding all mental health problems. My head knows that I have nothing to be ashamed of, even if my emotions tell me differently. I support and admire the work of organisations like Mind, PANDAS and CALM when it comes to raising awareness of issues, campaigning for better support and breaking down the stigma. If I then hide my own experiences of depression then I am undermining their efforts in the long run.

So yes, let's be honest. I have postnatal depression. It doesn't define who I am but at this point of my life it is a part of me.
Our Cherry Tree © . Design by Berenica Designs.