Jessie and I went to high school together and thanks to social media we have been able to keep in touch even though she's taken her roots across country. We both got pregnant with our first babies at the same time (due 1 day apart) and it's been so fun watching them grow up though pictures and videos. She has been pretty open about the struggles she faced postpartum after having her twins so I was really grateful when she reached out to me about telling her story for the blog. So why don't we let her take it from here.
Everyone who brings a new child into their home knows how overwhelming it can be. You have an insane mixture of emotions. Your hormones are all over the place if you have just given birth. You are now the most important person to this human being. I remember crying out of the unknown with my first - I had the "baby blues" as they say. It lasted only the first three days and then it was gone.
Then I had my twins. Long story short- I had my first ambulance ride since I was only 33 weeks gestation. They tried to stop my labor for 3 days. I was exhausted and done. I finally had my boys via csection At 4:25 and 4:28 PM on July 16, 2012.
Then the day I was discharged came and holy emotions. I was wheeled out to the waiting area for my husband to come get me and of course they wheeled me next to a new mom with her newborn baby going home. I lost it. I started bawling and I thought here come "the baby blues". I'm one of the lucky ones though, my boys only spent two weeks in the nicu before I brought them home. Many other nicu families can't say the same.
Home, right, I forgot to mention my husband just graduated with his masters in teaching and was looking for a job. We were blessed with a job opportunity the day after the boys were born and we took it. Only problem? It would take us three hours away from our family and friends and what was familiar. Oh and help. We were moving away from all help.
As you can see- this is a LOT to go through in such a short period of time. Add on the raging hormone change from being pregnant to having newborns- I can now see why I had such a hard time after birth. I remember posting on my family blog if any of my friends had experience with PPD and you can bet a lot of my friends posted the same things "get out of the house, go for a walk, try to make new friends, exercise, it's just baby blues" and the worst yet came from family (who I love dearly! Don't get me wrong) when they said "i hope you don't have to get on any kind of medication".
Fast forward 5 months postpartum. I go to my OBGYN for check up on my IUD. I ask my doctor if it was possible to have PPD 5 months postpartum. He said absolutely and pulled me into his office. There I sat crying to this man "I'm not myself anymore. My husband has asked me where has his wife gone. I sometimes think my family would be better off if I wasn't there because I can't seem to get a hang of this. Sometimes I wish I never got pregnant"
Here comes the ugly truth. I did not love myself. I would get so angry I would pull my hair out. I had bald spots. I would sit in the bathroom and cry counting down the hours till my husband came home. I would get so upset with myself I would hit my legs resulting in bruises. It was then I realized why some people who are depressed would cut themselves - it would bring some sort of relief to the pain you felt inside. Luckily I never got that far and I thank God every day that I didn't. I was a dead ringer for postpartum depression and I was put on medication right away.
They said it could take up to 6 weeks to kick in. I remember a week after i started I felt So much better. I wasn't angry. I wasn't lashing out and most importantly I was able to bond with my children. Why was I terrified to seek help? Because of the stigma that comes with it. I wish I would've heard stories from others about their experiences to feel better about what I was going through.
Currently I'm 4 years 8 months postpartum and I still battle depression but I'm not afraid to say I need help. Asking for help is NOT a sign of weakness. I believe it takes someone strong to admit they need help! Now I know that I am a strong mom, a strong wife and a strong woman who happens to battle depression.
Jessie is a 29 year old mom of three. She has a 7 year old daughter and 4 year old twin boys. She been married for 9 years and her family is currently residing in Independence, Oregon
If you or someone you know is struggling with postpartum depression please reach out and get help
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