Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Then there were four. Or six, depending on your view.

If you are friends with me on Facebook, you knew this post was coming. I could have posted about it last week but I'm nothing if not honest, and I'll tell you- things have been rough. Let me back track a bit.

Way back in 2010 I had posted about not knowing what it felt like to be "done" with babies. (Go back and read it. As a bonus, you get to see pictures of when my big kids were just tiny!) I knew I wasn't done, I never had that finished feeling all of my friends had gotten. When I was pregnant with Penelope, I toyed with the idea of another. I had a hard pregnancy at some points but I knew the greater good would outweigh all of that. I could do anything for a healthy baby, none of the pain, exhaustion, uncomfortable nights, or stress would mean anything once I held that sweet babe in my arms.

And it was so true.

I don't think I had ever felt like I did in that moment. Sure, she was my third baby and I was a seasoned pro at this mommyhood thing. But this baby... there was something special about her. Even after I had her, I thought, I could do this again.

But as time went on, I felt done. It was a slow realization that I was going to be done and I was totally OK with that. Finally, after all of these years I finally had the feeling I knew I should feel. Our family was full, we were complete. We weren't missing any pieces. I was taking all of the appropriate birth control precautions so that we would have no surprises.

I have struggled since Penelope's birth. I am now doing the stay at home mom thing and while that has it's own way of being fulfilling, I feel like I am getting dumber and dumber every day. I don't feel like I am contributing enough to the greater good of our family. I feel like I could, and should, be doing so much more. I feel like I'm giving my daughters mixed signals- that a woman's place is at home. I don't want my son to grow up thinking the woman takes care of everything. It's really a hard balance for me to find.

Add this to post partum depression. I had it really bad after Olivia and it took me a year to start to feel normal. I find that the longer I go with Penelope, the worse it's getting. I'm going backwards. I'm usually able to keep it together in front of people.

But in late November that has all changed.
December was hard.

So hard.

I should be happy. And I am not. And I hate that I am not. I know so many who would do just about anything to have a baby of their own. It makes me feel terrible and selfish.

But what I am right now is barely hanging on the edge.

I am barely keeping it together. I am crying every day, most of the time I don't even notice it until the kids ask me if I'm OK. I am having panic attacks when I need to leave the house, but I feel trapped in here. I don't sleep at night. I'm so exhausted and I lay there just on the edge of sleep but it never comes. Then I'm obviously so tired during the day I can barely function. I can't sleep because I have an eight month old baby to take care of but also because if I sleep during the day, I'm really screwed at night.

But the worst, the absolute worst?

The worst is this never ending, overwhelming, sadness. Being sad for no reason is maybe the worst feeling in the world. I feel alone and sad.

Matt has no idea what to do for me. My friends are trying and I just... I can't. I can't hang out, I don't want to talk, I don't want to go anywhere, I don't want to answer my door, I just want to cry. Alone. In bed.

Then I realize I have to hold it together because I need to get the kids to/from school. Penelope is fully dependent on me. I have pets to keep alive. I meals to make, a house to clean, and I have to really make an effort to shower.

On top of ALL of this, we're financially stressed out, maybe the worst it's ever been. And then.... I feel terrible physically. There is nothing in me that feels emotionally (obviously) or physically ready to grow a baby. I don't feel like I am doing a good job for this baby already. I talked to my doctor about an anti-depressant (obviously) just so I can get through the damn day. But I have this irrational fear I will take something and end up with a baby who has a birth defect or health problem. Then I'll feel like the worst mother in the world who couldn't just keep her shit together for the greater good of her baby.

I no longer feel like I am working with a full deck anymore. All of my volunteer positions are precarious- I feel like tossing my stuff at the groups and say screw it. Every time I have an obligation that forces me to leave the house, let alone put on real pants, I feel angry and anxious.

And yet. Here we are. Soon to be a family of six. I'm not ready. I am terrified. I am sad. I am anxious. I feel hopeful I will be happy soon. It all works out. Until then... here I am. Just trying to get through the day without crying the entire time.

Currently 10 weeks
Due: August 8


Julie H said...

I think we have to get over this feeling that needing antidepressants is a failure of some sort. It's a chemical thing not something you can really control by being better at things. I hope you are able to get the help you need.

mypixieblog said...

Oh, baby girl.... I'm so so so sorry you are dealing with this. The anxiety, the depression, I understand those feelings so well and it's not something I would ever wish on my worst enemy. I'm sorry you are feeling the weight of the world right now but I am SO incredibly proud of you for sharing your feelings so openly in this amazing blog post. That takes GUTS. And I believe it's truly the first step in the healing process.

Don't feel guilty for feeling these things, because they are a part of your experience right now and what's most important is getting you back on the track of feeling GOOD again. I think it's great you went to see a dr to go on meds to make you feel better. It means you are taking active steps to get the help you need.

You know you can reach out to me whenever you want to talk, momma. I'm always here. charlotte@mypixieblog.com

Sending so much love your way. XOXO

Anonymous said...

Oh honey, it will all be ok. I went through this once, when I was a stuck at home mom. We had only one vehicle and when my husband went to work, I was home with all the kids. No park to walk to, no friends to talk to. Just our little house... Stuck. I wasn't pregnant but I do feel your pain. Just remember God doe St give you more than you can handle and that blessings come in all shapes and sizes.

I know that naturally, taking a walk outside instantly releases chemicals in the brain and will help heal depression. Stretching, exercising, and sunshine are all great ways to help ward off depression. Press on and know that it will all be ok.

Ruth said...

I can understand not wanting to take any meds right now. Even when you are told they are safe, you worry they aren't. I know I did. Even with tylenol.
Some people have a lot of luck with vitamins. Particularly B vitamins can be helpful with depression.
It might be worth a shot so you don't have to be on antidepressants.
Money problems are god-awful. I am already counting down to the end of this year so my truck loan is done. It will be nice to not have to figure out where the money is going to come from for things like new shoes or more doctor visits.
Have hope that it will get better. If you don't have that, you don't have anything.

Kim {Hope Whispers} said...

I wish I had the words to fix everything for you. Sending hugs and prayers. I believe time will help. But if it doesn't, reach out for help and know that its ok to need help every once in a while. Being a mom is hard work. Don't be so hard on yourself. HUGS!

Shann Eva said...

I'm so sorry you're struggling right now. I have had anxiety/depression all my life, and it got really bad while I was pregnant. I did end taking anti-depressants because my doctor strongly felt the benefits outweighed the risks . I know you probably don't feel like talking, but I'm here for you if you need someone to just listen.

Chrissy said...

I am so very sorry you are struggling right now. I am sure things will fall into place. Of course this is all overwhelming, but don't forget you are doing a great job, every single day. I wish I had the words to make this better for you. Sending hugs and strength your way - just know you are not alone! xxx

Cynthia said...

Oh sweet lady, I'm so sorry you are struggling. But! Thank you so much for the open, honest, and bare truth you spilled onto your page. So many will relate to you and be glad they are not alone. And neither are you...

Snazzytoes said...

You poor kid... Please believe that this too shall pass! I am happy for Penelope that she will have a sibling close in age to her... Like your other two. Soon it will be like having 2 sets of kids, which is nice and even. You know that there's a reason for everything, and this 4th baby is a lucky one. You are a good mother, you created a great family, and you don't owe any more than that. You keep them all alive! Try to be gentler with yourself, as you would with a friend who described the terrible symptoms you do. You' d never tell her she wasn't contributing enough! Ang get on anti-depressents as soon as possible, even if it's after the birth. Like in the delivery room.

The Flynnigans said...

I'm so glad that so many people reached out Sar-bear. Yeah, I'm getting all cheesy on you. I want to so badly reach through and give you a big hug. And to FIX shit, like snapping my fingers like this .. I love you my dear. xoxox

Neely said...

Im so sorry you're feeling this way!!

thotlady said...

I didn't know you were expecting again. I know you will weather through. I have faith in you.

jn said...

Sara....I really think we need to talk. Or you can talk and I can listen. I feel your pain....you know I do. Just ask Andrea. She can tell you how low I have gone and have survived. It's hard to see any light at the end of the tunnel when you are so far from the light. But it is there. You just take baby steps. any little thing you do in a day is an accomplishment....no kidding. That's what I have had to do. And I could not have done it alone. I reached out to anyone who would take the time to listen or visit with me. I needed people around me......a lot. I found out who my real friends were...they never gave up on me. I will pray for you...it's what I do best. But call me.....really......I've got a couple suggestions that may help you. Believe me, I've tried them all. God Bless!