Conquering This Mom Stuff
Okay, first off, pushing a baby out of you is (excuse my French) fucking AMAZING and having your child cut out of you, is just as hardcore! --- I constantly have to remind myself this because it's taken 7 months to dig myself out of a hole, but that's okay!
My delivery was supposed to be simple—a couple of pushes and bam, I have a daughter—but NO! My daughter was a stubborn one, so I had to get a last-minute C-section. That whole process screwed me up mentally and was the onset of my post-partum anxiety. Over time, I went deeper and deeper into a hole and digging myself out of that hole was hard. It's still hard for me to not crawl back into that hole because beating depression and anxiety is a full-time job. Every day is a new battle and It sucks that there isn't much mental support for new moms. Below I've shared some trick that's helped me climb out of my hole, and that's helped me stay out of the hole.
Time for Yourself
After having my baby, I had to leave her in the hospital because I was discharged, and she wasn’t. She spent a week within the NICU and it hurt my feelings so much. When we finally brought her home, I was so scared of leaving her. In return, I was sleep deprived and grew frustrated. If I took the time I needed, the process probably would’ve been smoother. I knew that I needed time to myself, but the anxiety and fear were overbearing. When I had enough, I began reminding myself that I deserve me-time and at the very least, gave myself 10/15 minutes of alone time.
Exercise When You Can
I had an unexpected C-section, so I was unable to move as much when I got home but when I was healed- I got so used to not doing anything that I didn’t make the effort to exercise. I felt impaired and being inside the house so much during my recovery stripped me of my drive to be active. TBH, I still struggle with this one, but making myself go on short walks made a huge difference.
Aside from eating healthy, I wasn’t eating at all. I would go days without eating and when I did eat, it was fast food. If I ate more, I probably would’ve had the strength to be more active and push aside the negative thoughts. I recently started meal prepping at the beginning of each week, and it has been something that's more flexible and healthier.
Get Some Sleep
This is especially important for mamas who breastfeed. You are always on-call and when your baby is hungry and up, you’re up. Don’t worry about having a messy house and sleep when your baby sleeps. Naps are my best friend and I take them as often as I can. SLEEP SLEEP SLEEP, especially for the first few weeks!
Avoid Being Alone
Having bonding time with your baby is important, but after a few weeks, interacting is important. I had to make myself start having conversations with adult people. It reminded me that I'm more than just a mom and it helps keeps me sane.
Trying to do all these things while fighting post-partum depression is hard! But if you encourage yourself to do at least one of these things, it becomes easier to do the others. Don’t give up on yourself and constantly remind yourself that you deserve to feel sane, even when your mind tells you otherwise.