19 July 2010

This is how I felt

I discovered the blog and beautiful work of Tracey Lau a few weeks ago.

Tracey recently wrote a post which touched my heart. Tracey's son has just turned one, her fifth child. I feel that she captured a feeling I experienced too. Tracey writes:

"For the first few months I survived on about two hours broken sleep a night, it was insane. Having been on this baby journey a few times before, I was comfortable with the idea that I could navigate it all, and brought into play all that I had learnt from previous experience. As time went on something was different, I felt like a heavy cloud was descending on me and I began to become overwhelmed by the most simplest of tasks. I would freak out at the fact that I had to go and get milk, I mean how many times have I bought milk before, or that a load of washing needed to be done. Tasks that I knew how to do, seemed like mammoth mountains in front of me. I would cry at everything, EVERYTHING! I questioned my ability as a mother and thoughts would fly into my head that scared me a lot. I mentioned it to a couple of people and they told me that I was a strong woman, capable and knew what I was doing, and that I would get through. Of course I agreed with them and kept going, but it wasn’t the same. Something in my body was different. If you asked me what I felt like I would have said, “when you go the beach and get dumped by a wave and you are underneath the water and everything is spinning around you, you can’t work out which way is up and for a moment you really believe you might actually die, that is what my life felt like.”

I felt like this after my first child was born. It felt like I was walking through honey, everything was foggy and it was so difficult to do anything. I still feel fearful of some small tasks and avoid them if I can. I feel sad that the two people I did speak to about this feeling, my community health nurse and my doctor, did nothing. Just asking, just opening my mouth was so difficult. The doctor said nothing. I mean, she literally said nothing. Went straight on to the next topic. Ignored. The nurse said it was best if we didn't do the "test" as I was trying to get a spot in a sleep school for my daughter, and "if they thought I was depressed it would make it harder to get it." I even called her later to ask again... But no help there. My husband was a huge, huge support and he did so much to help me, for whcih I will be forever thankful.

What changed for me was going back to work. being me... even if it was just driving to and from work alone, listening to the radio. Showing up.

Did you experience PND? What helped you?


Kelly said...

I have felt this way myself, specially after my first baby. I went through PND. My husband was worried about me, and went with me to see my doctor. I took happy pills, for a little while.

Blythe said...

Kelly, I'm glad your doctor took notice. It takes so much effort to actually get there, doesn't it?