Friday, April 3, 2009

The girl with the faraway eyes...


When Lucy was born nine years ago I was so excited. Having had a break between babies of seven and a half years I couldn't wait to have another. When I held her in my arms for the first time I was so full of love for her. It was a challenging time too though, in many ways, as we all adjusted to each other. Recently married Mark and I moved with Charlotte to a new area and I had finished working at a job I really enjoyed. Charlotte had so many things to adjust to as well - Mark, a new baby and a new school where she wasn't very happy.


It probably wasn't surprising that I slipped into the quicksand of post natal depression. Feeling isolated and anxious I struggled on feeling pretty worthless. I can clearly remember sitting at the Maternal Health nurse's waiting room and reading a pamphlet and ticking all the boxes that indicated possible PND. It was a real light bulb moment. I also remember another time sitting in my car and telling my friend, quite calmly, that I had been contemplating ending my life. Looking back this is pretty scary and sad. As anyone who has had, or has, depression knows it really is like a black cloud coming down, a cloud that is so hard to shift.


Once I realised what was happening to me I was pretty determined to get through it. This wasn't easy. My gp prescribed anti depressants but really I was too anxious to take them! So I had counselling and with support from my family I did get back on track. Seeking help was the best way forward, acknowledging that I needed it was a major step. I would encourage anyone with any form of depresssion to find support, to make yourself a priority, to understand that you matter.


Through it all though I adored Lucy, and loved & supported Charlotte. In a way Lucy's early months are a blur but I'll always remember how her sweet & calm nature soothed me. When I look at Lucy now, at nine years and one day, I still see the gentle, far away look in her eyes that she had as a baby. She is still my baby of course and it's been just amazing this week celebrating her life so far.

6 comments:

Leanne said...

Your honesty and words are so touching...what lucky girls you have...it can be a hard and lonely road (I do know) but so glad your determination saw you through. Thank you for sharing. x

Rae said...

Wow, thanks so much for sharing that. The birthday is such a powerful reminder of how far you've come and all the memories. I never realized how much a child's birthday means to a mother until I became one.

Melissa Ellen said...

I can so relate to your post. When my first baby was born (now 11) I too suffered from Post Natal Depression, although I didn't realise it until years later when a friend had it, even though I had thoughts of not wanting to live at the time. Such an important subject for women to talk about and know that they are not alone, and that things do change.

Lynda said...

My Tully's birthday always brings up a mix of excitement and guilt thanks to PND....bloody shocker isn't it, so isolating. But we got through it didn't we?
Tully was one of those lovely angel babies too.

Michelle said...

So glad you made it through.

xx

Sarah Jane said...

What a scary time! Ah, so glad you made it through okay. Thank you for sharing.