Postpartum depression is something that affects from 1 to 7 of women after childbirth according to the American Psychological Association.
One of the best moments of my life was when I held my little girl for the first time! At first, I was in shock and the next moment I fell in love. Also, when I looked into my husband’s eyes, I feel even more in love with him.
This has been one of the biggest transitional periods of my life but, it is worth every second!
In a way I feel as though I am going through a grieving process. I am letting go of the life of just my husband and me. Now we share our world with our new little girl, Ada.
I have gone through a lot in my life, which means several transitions.
-I left my old unhealthy life of using, to getting clean and finding a new way to live.
-I learned how to step out of physical and emotional isolation and went from hating myself to loving myself.
-I learned how to develop healthy relationships with others and maintain a life that I enjoy living.
These are all examples of significant transitions that I went through. But, none of these seem as big as the one that I am currently experiencing. Don’t get me wrong, I am so in love with this little girl that we brought into the world, and motherhood is simply amazing.
My husband and I have waited a long time to meet her and she is everything that I could have ever dreamed of! That being said, our lives completely changed the moment she was born.
Now I am going through strong emotions and almost everything makes me cry. I have been able to laugh through most of these moments, which is extremely important. This lets me know that everything is truly okay and that I don’t need to let these feelings take over. With all of this there is definitely some fear that I feel.
I knew this event would change a lot of things for us. The other night I cried as I told my husband that I missed going to bed at the same time, as we take shifts so that we can both get some sleep.
Later I was able to laugh at myself! It is such a small thing in the grand scheme of everything.
I confessed that I was scared for when he goes back to work. I feel fear of course that things might be too hard by myself. Keeping myself accountable for my feelings and sharing them with him has helped me a tremendous amount.
Deep down I know that I can do this, that I am a great mother. I know that everything will be just fine when I am home alone with Ada. Sure, there are going to be some rough days but, I have more support than I could ever ask for.
So now I feel that it is important for me to have a plan in place so that I do not fall into postpartum depression. Postpartum depression is something that affects from 1 to 7 of women after childbirth according to the American Psychological Association. And this is not a state that I will be falling into!
Without a game plan I will lack structure, balance, and accountability. These three things have always been important for me to maintain a healthy balance in life. I have come up with a few things so far to help me obtain this goal.
1. Keep talking to others- because this gets the fear and anxiety out of my head. This allows me to receive feedback from others. It also allows other people to know how to be there for me. I need to let others know what I need right now so that they know I need their help.
2. Believe in myself- because this helps to eliminate self-doubt. I know that I can do this and that I am not alone. I am a good mother and that Ada has all that she needs. When things get tough, believing in myself will help me to see the other side.
3. Getting to meetings- because this has always been one thing that helps me to maintain consistent balance in my life. I can go there and share how I am feeling and I always leave feeling better than I did when I got there. I cannot use Ada as an excuse for not being able to get to a meeting!
4. Keep breathing- because this is something that helps me to relax. When I forget to breath I become wound up and I have no release of negative energy. Taking deep breaths keeps me in the moment, which is exactly where I need to be.
5. Enjoy the current moment for exactly what it is– because this allows me to stay away from falling into depression. When I focus on the current moment I am not worrying about everything else.
6. Making time for Travis and myself- because it is important for us to have our time together. Although every moment we spend with Ada is wonderful, we still need to have our moments together as well. Our date nights will still exist!
So far, I feel that I have come up with a great plan for myself. Making a practice out of it is the next step and positive results will come because of this, without a doubt.
If you are finding yourself in a similar position, first of all please find your supports. Don’t try to deal with this process alone. If that means professional support and finding the right medication, then go that route as well!
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My Life Experiment
Hello, we are Travis and Casey Hagen the writer's and owner's of My Life Experiment. As recovering Individuals, we are no strangers to leaving behind dysfunctional ways of living. Over the years we have become adept at managing our intense mental and emotional worlds to find healing from the past, peace in the present and new ways to bring about success for our futures. There is plenty for us to share with you about finding better ways to live. So please follow us on our journey as we share what we know, and continue to share as we invitably learn more.