Today is my last full day of school with students! HAPPY TUESDAY, y’all!
Today two of my Blogher roomies are here to share their stories with you, to share some advice. To let you know, just like this rally is meant for, that you are not alone. You are NEVER alone.
Alena wrote a post earlier this year titled “This is What Postpartum Depression Feels Like” which was syndicated on Blogher. Those words she heard? “It’s the best thing in the world”? Reading that on someone else’s blog is how I knew I wasn’t okay. It’s how I knew at my six week appointment that I would fill that scrip I’d had since Joshua was 8 days old.
Alena‘s up first this morning and she’s talking about when she realized she wasn’t okay. When she realized what was missing.
I remember one day last summer sitting in my therapist’s office. Trying to form words explaining the pain I was feeling. Explaining the emotions that were there, and the ones I wished were there. I remember saying “I just don’t feel joy. I think I should feel joy. But I don’t.”
That was the thing that was missing. I loved my child more than any words, but I couldn’t find the joy. And I knew I was supposed to. I knew I should have.
Weeks continued on. I worked with my therapist on coping techniques on working through the feelings, on recognizing the feelings for what they were.
And then it happened, a moment that is still tucked away in my heart. Something changed.
We were playing before her bed. I was tickling her under her chin, listening to her laugh. I was holding her in the air, flying around like an airplane. And I felt it. Joy. Moments. Just moments. But it was the light at the end of the tunnel. It was what I needed to keep fighting.
It’s been a year since I started therapy. It’s been just over a year ago since I realized that what I was feeling wasn’t the motherhood others experienced. And while it hasn’t been an easy year, where I stand right now is so much better than where I stood a year ago. I still have setbacks. I still struggle with what I missed. I still mourn over the time of Sophia’s life I can’t go back and experience with a clear head.
But I’m here. Happy. Healthy in every way.
It takes work.
It’s a difficult journey.
But for every difficult session or doctors appointment, for every hard conversation with your significant other or family member…it will get you to a place where you’re whole. Where you can feel joy. Where there is so much happiness exploding from your pores that you want to scream it from the rooftops.
If you don’t feel that way today, work for it, fight for it.
You deserve it.
We all deserve it.
Alena is an Auburn fan. But I won’t hold it against her. (November 12, 2011? It’s on.) She’s also actively involved in Toomer’s for Tuscaloosa, a tornado relief effort lending aid to the people of Alabama. She’s also recently begun organizing for the people of Joplin, Missouri. If you’d like to find out how you can help, send her a tweet or message through her blog’s Facebook page.