birth

‘I think I made a mistake. A mistake in having him at all,’ I texted. I wished to GOD I could go back to pre-child life. ‘You are not meant to be a mother,’ I told myself.’ Woman’s severe struggle with postpartum depression

“I vividly remember hearing my baby cry for the first time and feeling… nothing. ‘Mom he looks just like you!,’ the doctor said. I tried to squeeze out a tear because that’s what new moms do, right? I tried to feel happiness. It wasn’t there.”

‘You don’t have to be Superwoman, attempting to squeeze out a baby without meds. If you’re vain as I am, wear makeup, style your hair. Do it YOUR way.’

“Your husband will say and do the wrong things leading up to delivery. He will annoy you. Then, your baby will come out looking exactly like him. All that morning sickness, the inability to eat sushi, the limiting your coffee intake, the sacrifices, only for your husband to get all the credit. It will make you slightly crazy.”

‘I stood in line, filling the medication that would remove the life within me. I looked at my fiancé. ‘I’m going home and grabbing my camera.’ If I didn’t do this, I’d regret it for the rest of my life.’

“I headed to the hospital. I remember being in the room, feeling blood dripping from my body. I watched my friend’s body bleed simultaneously, signs of life, as she waited to bring her baby into the world. A life leaving and a life beginning all in the same room at the same moment. I was transfixed.”

‘My kids were unplanned and accidental. I never wanted to be a mom. I don’t enjoy playing with my kids. I don’t like being touched or needed.’

“Every single day, I feel resentment, sadness, frustration. I reminisce about my lost freedom. The days I would wake up with energy, pull out my to-do list, and get everything done. The days when I could hop in the car and run a quick errand, take a nap, or shower whenever I wanted. The days I could set BIG goals and actually attain them.”

‘Motherhood is really tough.’ You’d think, ‘Well that’s crap.’ Birth was traumatic. As a child of sexual abuse, a traumatic birth can be very re-triggering. I didn’t count on that.’

“I expected to be handed my baby like I was Beyoncé in a floral garden and the heavens open up. Instead, I felt like a potato cake seagulls were fighting over, one stitching me up, one folding my boob like a hamburger to stuff in my baby’s mouth, and one pressing so hard on my stomach I thought she was going to touch my spine. Yep, didn’t count on that.”

‘Hey Dad, I want to raise your son. I want him as my own,’ I insanely told my dying father. ‘I didn’t want to put that burden on you,’ he said. He died just 18 hours later.’

“‘Adopt him. You’re supposed to be his mom. You’re the one. Tell your dad. Tell him now.’ My dad visited me in dream. I was standing in a white room. He walked towards me holding a baby wrapped in a light blue blanket. He handed him over, smiled and kissed the baby’s head. When I woke up, I knew.”

‘I took maternity photos in the dress I wore to my husband’s funeral.’

“I didn’t know I was pregnant on the day of the funeral. Clothes were strewn about in a panic as I rummaged through every drawer, hamper and closet 2 hours before I was supposed to meet the photographer. Then I saw it. Hanging quietly in the corner where it had remained for the last 7 months.”

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