How is your week going? I trust you all are doing ok. I am well, thanks for asking.
So, a few days back was the National Daughters day celebration and I wanted to take out time to celebrate my girls AKA Tana and Tilda. If you have been on this blog long enough you probably would have encountered them here already
Thinking of celebrating them has kind of reminded me of all the beautiful struggles I've had in my journey to motherhood. And what better way to kick off the season of our #overcoming pain series than, to begin with, my own story and creating awareness for postpartum depression.
So I thought of sharing my journey to motherhood and postpartum depression. My Journey started in 2016 when I had my first child Matana AKA TanaT. Kindly read up on all my banter with Tana here and here
ALL ABOUT MY POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION JOURNEY
You’ve probably heard of the “baby blues.” That’s because it’s quite common for new mothers to feel a little sad, worried, or fatigued. As many as 80 percent of mothers have these feelings for a week or two following childbirth. It’s completely normal and usually fades in a few weeks.
While some of the symptoms sound the same, postpartum depression is different from the baby blues.
Postpartum depression is a lot more powerful and lasts longer. It follows about 15 percent of births, first-time moms, and those who’ve given birth before. It can cause severe mood swings, exhaustion, and a sense of hopelessness. The intensity of those feelings can make it difficult to care for your baby or yourself.
though it’s normal to feel moody or fatigued after having a baby, postpartum depression goes well beyond that. Its symptoms are severe and can interfere with your ability to function.
SYMPTOMS OF POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION varies from person to person and even day today.
Here are a few indicators...
- You feel sad or cry a lot, even when you don’t know why.
- You’re exhausted, but you can’t sleep.
- You sleep too much.
- You can’t stop eating, or you aren’t interested in food at all.
- You have various unexplained aches, pains, or illnesses.
- You don’t know why you’re irritable, anxious, or angry.
- Your moods change suddenly and without warning.
- You feel out of control.
- You have difficulty remembering things.
- You can’t concentrate or make simple decisions.
- You have no interest in things you used to enjoy.
- You feel disconnected from your baby and wonder why you’re not filled with joy like you thought you’d be.
- Everything feels overwhelming and hopeless.
- You feel worthless and guilty about your feelings.
- You feel like you can’t open up to anyone because they’ll think you’re a bad mother or take your baby, so you withdraw.
- You want to escape from everyone and everything.
- You have intrusive thoughts about harming yourself or your baby.
- Your friends and family may notice that you’re withdrawing from them and from social activities or that you just don’t seem like yourself.
And yes, I went through all these and I still am. I am gradually getting into a better place.CAUSES OF POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION
The exact cause isn’t clear, but there are some factors that may contribute to postpartum depression. It could be triggered by a combination of physical changes and emotional stressors.
- Low thyroid hormone levels
- Sleep deprivation
- Inadequate diet
- Underlying medical conditions
- Drug and alcohol misuse
2. Emotional factorsOne may be more likely to develop postpartum depression if you’ve had a mood disorder in the past or if mood disorders run in your family
Emotional stressors may include:
- Recent divorce or death of a loved one
- You or your child has serious health problems
- Social isolation
- Financial burdens
- Lack of support
REMEDY FOR POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION
Postpartum depression is an illness just as you have a headache and fever and therefore requires medical attention. Just the same way you do not require deliverance and "casting and binding" but medication when you have a headache, mums with postpartum depression should be treated and well cared for and not stigmatized. *ok, now I am shouting. Off and drops mic now*.
Therapy is also required from a psychiatrist, psychologist, or other mental health professionals who can provide counseling.Self-care
This part of the treatment may be a little more difficult than it sounds. Practicing self-care means cutting yourself some slack. You shouldn’t attempt to shoulder more responsibility than you can handle. You are doing just ok with the little you are able to do.
As much as our society has not fully recognized that this is happening, it is actually happening and eating deep into the lives of Mums, especially new Mums. Thankfully, we are beginning to create awareness about postpartum depression and soon this awareness will spread across the board.
Most new Mums always say "I felt complete the moment I held my baby in my arms"
Phew! If you are a mum and didn't feel that way, don't worry your pretty head. You are OK and will be an amazing mum. And no, it is not your fault how you feel, so do not beat yourself up.
It is OK not to be ok. Take some “me time,” but don’t isolate yourself. Consider joining a support group for new Mums and Mums in general. Dads are welcome too. Click here to join our support group now on Instagram. It is a new baby of ours, please help us grow, share your stories too. Thank you.
Read up a woman's journey of postpartum depression on our sisters' blog here
I did say this post was to celebrate the National Daughters Day, so here goes my star girls Tana and Tilda.
National Daughters Day