Crazy, irrational thinking, I know. It wasn’t until she was over a year old that I started noticing all these moms at the mall with their newborns and was like, that was NEVER me. Was that feeling I had after Syd was born postpartum depression? Meh, it was probably just baby blues…
9 years ago Eli was born. And I disliked him very much. Even now I can’t bring myself to say the H word because it’s so shameful. Even now as I blink the tears back I can’t imagine feeling that way about him. But I did.
He didn’t sleep, he wouldn’t take a bottle. Exhausted and angry, I would let him cry until Robbie asked me if I was going to get him in the middle of the night. I pretty much never wanted to hold him. My dad, bless him, would come to Los Angeles 1-3 times a week to try to get Eli to take a bottle while I left the house (and I seriously considered never coming back).
That, my friends, was postpartum depression.
But even then I didn’t know it! I honestly didn’t know it until I could think clearly and look back at that time through a new lens almost a year later. I sure wish someone would have noticed for me, but I think we’re all so quick to just say ‘baby blues’ and move on. To chalk it up to hormones and moms just being ‘crazy’.
I see through the moms in my sleep group how much pressure there is now to be happy all the time and to love your life constantly. I didn’t have babies during a time when Facebook and Instagram were the measure of perfect parenting, and I can’t imagine going through the feelings I was having while watching everyone else thrive (and judge).
I share this story for the moms who feel or have felt this way, and for the future moms to be on the lookout for themselves. Postpartum depression looks a little different for everyone, but if it feels like it’s more than baby blues, it probably is.
*Crisis Call Center (United States) 1-800-273-8255 or dial 911