Some of you, especially mothers know what Baby Blues is all about. You might have read it somewhere or heard it through the grapevines, just like I had heard about it before and proclaimed that I would never go through one.
With a difficult pregnancy caused by my severe preeclampsia, bed ridden for four weeks straight, two hospitalizations, never ending check-ups followed by an emergency c-section at 35th weeks of my pregnancy then later watched our newborn baby helplessly laying under an oxygen hood…it took a toll on me emotionally.
What suppose to be happy new mommy moments seemed like a far away dream for me. Yes, I cried happy tears when I finally got to hold him for the very first time…3 days after he was born. Yes, I was so happy when we spent the last night in the hospital rooming together.
But as the new mommyhood role finally kicked in full gear, it became harder. I freaked out when Mr. X had to go back to work. Between cracked nipples and tears from pain of not latching on correctly…I sob with our new baby. Mr. X tried to cheered me up when I got so frustrated with breastfeeding. Being far from both sides of the family, the only source of help was purely from Mr. X and he really earn an honorary badge for standing by me.
What I thought was ‘only a baby blues’ period lasted for months. It got ugly and the biggest mistake was to never get it diagnose. When my doctor asked about how I feel, I lied…I was too ashamed to admit that something didn’t feel normal inside… something didn’t feel right. So it went undiagnosed and got worst. I was living a dual life…yes, I’m a happy new mother to the whole world but deep inside I felt rotten as if I’m a pitch dark tunnel, I hated everything, I even hated to hear Lil’ A crying at nights. It consumed me inside out. That year was hell and I was going through it alone not knowing there is a name for that demon, that there are helps out there, that there are ways to deal with it either through medications or counseling.
I never heard of Post Partum Depression until Lil’ A was almost 2 years old. When I read the symptoms my jaws dropped. That’s exactly how I felt…I withdrew from Mr. X, projected my unhappiness to him, lashing out to him. Even yelled at him during one of my meltdowns that I hated him…that demon had hurt the person I loveand I still carry that guilt to this very day. It got so ugly I’m surprised he didn’t walk out on me when were still in Dothan.
Actually, it took a marriage counselor to finally made me realized what caused that miserable first year after we had our baby was indeed a post partum depression, it almost drove my marriage off the cliff. She helped me tremendously dealing with the ghost of my PPD.
If only I would come clean to my doctor back in Dothan, he might provide helps in dealing with those rotten feelings and it would stop me from creating so much damage in our marriage. We are still working on our marriage and I’m thankful to God that I had escaped from the grip of that ugly PPD and my faith plus the counseling had helped me tremendously in recovering from its grips.
My hope is for more mothers, especially Indonesians to be able to open up to their doctors. Most Indonesians will be too embarrassed to share such things to their doctors. Sadly, it’s like a stigma that you don’t admit to others that you are depressed, that you just have to toughen up. Believe me, I know and I understand as I’ve been there before, was too ashamed and it almost breaks my marriage! As a medical expert they shouldn’t judge us, they should be able to help. If not then maybe it’s time to find a new doctor that does familiar with PPD.
PPD is real…not just make believe. Get the helps you need now before it’s too late!
The marriage ended. Not only because of PPD but it was one of a factor I guess.