I’ve tried long and hard to find out exactly where it all began. But like with most things…it was a slow onset. There isn’t a defining moment. I didn’t wake up with an epiphany one morning and realize ‘oh…I have PPD.’
No, it was small changes that slowly occurred. Part of me believes it is even possible that I started on my path before LJ was even born. I stressed about finances, I stressed about adding another child to Lil Mister. I stressed about my marriage. And I stressed about leaving my work to pile up.
I allowed the stress to eat at me. I allowed it to consume my every function. So…I did what I do best. I started planning.
I planned my maternity leave to a T. Then my boss decides to let me go a week early!!! I was grateful and God knew what he was doing, but He was messing with MY plans. I should know better than to question.
LJ was supposed to come on the 15th exactly. No earlier and no later because that was our Oupa’s birthday whom we gave LJ his name! Then I woke up that Wednesday on the 12th and knew that LJ was messing with MY plans.
Labor went easy but I wasn’t supposed to take medication. I took a spinal because my mind couldn’t cope with how quickly I was progressing. I was messing with MY plans.
Do you see a pattern beginning to occur?
I have a strong problem with letting go of MY plans. However, very rarely do things go exactly as planned.
Take yesterday for instance. I got off work and was going to go straight to the bank. That was the plan. Yet, Lil Mister was still at school and Hubby couldn’t leave work. So, I went to the school and waited for him to wake up from nap time.
Then I had to pump milk. So I went home. This was not planned because I didn’t want LJ to see or hear me and then I leave again. He is used to a routine and now I was messing with the routine.
I was only suppose to go to one bank. But the banks messed it up and I had to go to a different branch.
All of this adds to me and I start to get stressed. Needless to say, by the time we got to the grocery store as planned I was lost. Luckily Lil Mister was SO well behaved. I think he is already learning about what happens when you mess with MY plans! Lol
Back on point….
That first night in the hospital after labor, I couldn’t sleep. LJ wasn’t waking up to eat. Everything I knew about breastfed babies told me that he should be eating about every 2 hours. It had been 6 hours since his last feed. The nurses assured me it was okay. Therefore I formulated a new plan. I would wake him every four hours.
The next day it goes perfect….for the first half. The first three feeds were just on schedule. He woke up on his own for his fourth feed right on time…but never ended his feed. He fed and fed and fed. I began to get irritated. I was tired. I hadn’t slept.
Everytime he’d be done eating they’d come in for one thing or another. First, the nurses come to check on my vitals. Then LJ’s pediatrician comes to check on him. Then they bring breakfast. Then Hubby Dearest comes. Then it is bath time for LJ. Then we eat again. Then my doctor comes. Then the nurses again. Then Hubby has to leave. Then I bath. It just never stopped. So at 7pm that night when he began eating on schedule I thought perfect!
He would eat and then we’d sleep. But he just kept going. Finally, at midnight, I laid him down and walked down the hall to the nurses. He cried. I cried. The nurses understood.
I was exhausted. I hadn’t slept but about 3 hours in 3 segments since giving birth and now my newborn had been at the breast for 5 hours!
They convinced me to allow a supplement feeding through a syringe. This WAS NOT in MY plans!
I began stressing that my milk wasn’t enough. I stressed that after formula he wouldn’t go back to the breast. I felt like I was failing already.
LJ took the formula through a syringe. We burped him to make sure all the winds were out. I held him until he slept and then the nurses took him for the next 5 hours. I needed to rest.
It wasn’t in my plans for him to sleep AWAY from me AT ALL!
My anxiety levels had peeked and refused to come down.
I slept….hard. When the nurses woke me three hours later to check vitals I was barely aware. They later told me that I then asked for LJ and they had said they’d bring him. But I fell so quickly back to sleep they left me to rest.
When I finally did wake up, I immediately, with tears in my eyes, went searching for him. He was calm and resting peacefully in the nursery. He was content. I was a wreck. I picked him up and held him crying. After that I wouldn’t let them take him away from me at all!
They were trust worthy and my baby was PERFECTLY healthy but I was so scared not to have him with me. I feared us being separated as if I was going to loose him.
I stayed an extra night in the hospital to ensure he was latching and feeding properly but I still didn’t rest. I lied to the doctors and said I was well rested the next day and anxious to get home.
In reality…I was just anxious.
It was this anxiousness that never left me. It was this anxiousness that slowly crept into each and every part of my life. It was this anxiousness that led me to sit where I do today.
It is still with me.
When we talk about me returning to a full day work day, I start to get panic. The anxiousness consumes me. I can’t sit still anymore. I worry incessantly about what will happen with my children. My mind races constantly and I battle to keep a train of thought.
The anxiousness wraps it’s spider-like web around each and every aspect of my life.
If any of this sounds even slightly familiar, please clickity click a few of the links below. Some are blogs, some are just information.
And please don’t feel alone!
If you just want to talk to someone...I'm up for that too! Send me a little email or drop by my twitter! I'd love to chat with you about everything and anything. We'll have a cuppa (or a bottle of wine ;-) through our virtual cafe!