For mothers, the truth after baby is sometimes hard to admit. To others, but mainly to themselves.
“How are you? How in love are you? Don’t you want to just hold and stare at that baby every second of every day?”
Smile and say, “I’m so happy! Oh there are no words for how in love I am! I cannot put this baby down!”
But inside, “I am happy, some of the time. I do cry a lot lately, though. I am so in love, but really overwhelmed, and kind of anxious. I do hold this baby all the time, but I feel guilty that I don’t always want to.”
Each mother is different. Each baby is different. But all are on some sort of journey to find happiness. This is my journey through postpartum.
I started writing a blog after my first was born. I found it therapeutic since pregnancy and parenthood were NOT what I thought they would be. I mean, I knew that it was going to be hard and exhausting but worth it. What I didn’t know is how out of control of major things (like labor and breastfeeding) I would be. And I didn’t know the truly immobilizing “mom guilt” could be as well.
I wrote posts about updates on how my Little Lang was growing. I wrote about how I was one and done (ironically enough because now I am starting this after having my second). Over time, the posts became fewer and farther between. It wasn’t until Robin Williams committed suicide that I wrote about seeking therapy for many different reasons after having my first son.
While I sometimes continue that blog, I thought something of this magnitude deserves its own platform.
Yesterday, I went for my post-op appointment at the OBGYN. Normally after baby, they ask questions about how you’re feeling, not just physically but emotionally. I have been overwhelmed, anxious and crying for weeks. And I decided to be honest about it.
I hadn’t been honest at all about it until recently with my husband and my family. I learned from after I had Vedder to at least be honest with one person. It doesn’t help me that much, but at least someone knows.
I have so much support from family. I hear affirmations of how strong I am and how great of a mother I am. I also see other moms struggle and tell them how amazing and strong they are. In the back of my mind I know though that while those words are appreciated so much, it doesn’t change a mother’s feelings until she believes it herself.
And that is where my journey begins. The journey to maybe start believing that again. I felt like I had to start documenting all of this because, first, writing is so therapeutic to me; second, if it helps one woman be honest too, I feel like what I am going through is for a reason.