With a little trepidation, I write this post. It may be more than some would like to know, but something I really feel like I need to share. I have shared my prior experiences with quite a few people and have never been particularly shy about it. I am 4 weeks out from the delivery of my precious baby, Makenna, and aside from numbing fatigue and high blood pressure have felt pretty good. Until the last couple of days.
I want to document how I have been feeling...hoping it will help me and any others that may come across this post. Note that is is the middle of the night, I have just finished nursing Makenna, my brain is in overdrive. I am exhausted yet sleep is elusive. I am listening to the adorable snores of Andrew who is passed out on the living room floor. The house is dark except for the light in the kitchen over the stove.
Okay, here goes...earlier today, I had the overwhelming need to take a nap. The need was fueled by an increase in my high blood pressure medication per doctor's order. Talk about washed out. It really knocks me out. So, I slept...for about 45 minutes before Adam brought Makenna in to be nursed. Then I showered and got ready for the day which I have found to be an absolute necessity to feel somewhat normal during the first few weeks after childbirth. Adam mentioned he had some errands in town and then was going to Mexico to check on his furniture and he would be back in the evening. The first inkling of what was to come is when I felt the hair stand up on my arms. I brushed it off and went on with my day.
I went to Deb's to hang out for a few minutes and get ATC after school. Took Mom and Makenna with me to a friend's home to pick up Girl Scout Cookies. Hung out til about 6:20 and ATC reminded me he had Cub Scouts. I noticed the beautiful sunset and realized I was worried about darkness falling. Made a mental note to myself to make sure I slept tonight. Waited with the kids in the car for 40 minutes while ATC was in the church and became increasingly irritated with the blanket of darkness in spite of the beautiful moon. Got home and me and the boys cleaned the trash from the car with a few unremarkable squabbles. I kept looking over my shoulder as I felt my anxiety growing. Where the heck was my husband?? Well, of course he called while we were outside and I missed it. Figures.
Once inside, I remembered Samuel had been wreaking havoc on the TV and had messed up the programming...no Biggest Loser to distract me...the boys could do nothing right...Makenna wanted to be held and nursed...Sam kept grabbing and scratching me and Andrew would NOT lay down to sleep! ATC decided it would be funny to scare his 4 year old brother and when he did, his 41 year old mother about jumped out of her skin as well. Needless to say, he got a tongue-lashing. I was quickly unraveling and in desperate need of my husband to help me get a grip!
Shortly thereafter, Adam arrived and I turned the reins for the younger boys over to him. He is awesome about that. he is so patient at times it irritates me. He fixed the programming on the TV while trying to entertain the boys and flirt with me...which just did NOT go over very well. I sat in front of the TV for a bit while Makenna and then Sam fell asleep in my arms. They were my protection from the darkness. The ultimate betrayal was when I realized Adam was asleep too. I was by myself with panic mounting.
The LA news was starting and I was trying my best not to cry. Finally, I went over to Adam where he was sleeping and asked if he would please come and lay with me in bed...the enemy was trying to make a comeback. Bless his heart and affection deprived body, he did just that and held me while I bawled because of my unrelenting fear of darkness that first reared it's ugly head after I had Andrew. That coupled with the mood swings (especially the uncontrolled crying at some of the most inopportune moments) have signalled that it is time to phone my doctor about a different BP medication and also possible meds for Post-partum depression.
There is nothing worse than dreading the night to the point where your skin hurts. I will also be able to sleep better if the anxiety is under control...and be a better mother and wife. I don't want a repeat of what happened with Andrew when this all first began. Adam must have sensed it was a very real fear for me because he wouldn't leave me and if he had to, he made sure someone was going to be with me. I love him for that.
I had to get up a few minutes ago to nurse Makenna and after I put her back to bed, I wanted to read Kernal Ken's update on his therapy (he has a great attitude and is so frank about his battle) and what I read impressed me to share what was happening, while it wasn't illuminated by the safety of the light of day. It may seem silly and unreal to some, but it is a real struggle for me.
I have so many blessings in my life that is also filled with so many trivial worries and hang ups. The word running through my head right now is "Prioritize". And since I have now written it down...it will happen.
I think I am tired enough to sleep for a bit before the next wake up call. If there is anyone that reads this and knows someone who may have PPD, give them a little extra support. It's a real issue. I'm so grateful to my doctor who recognized what was going on when I had Andrew and got me on medication asap so I could truly recover. Prayers and love are great too! I hope this isn't too much for anyone...but it has certainly helped me feel better to get it down in words. My main purpose for blogging was to get in the habit of journaling again. These things I can print and keep in a notebook.
Until next time...