I had the typical mommy blues after Nash was born. A couple of weeks of crying for no reason, feeling down, but nothing like I had after Crue was born. When I found out I was pregnant with Crue, most of my family was prepared, or at least anticipating that I would have some sort of depression after birth. Although I felt disconnected to Crue, the real blues didn’t set in until he was about two months old. I didn’t recognize it as post-partum. I felt no different than I had been feeling the past year. The first thing that alarmed me was how irritable I was. I had a total and complete lack of patience with everyone and everything. If Crue would cry, instead of trying to figure out what was wrong, I felt the need to set him down and go in another room and just breathe. I would say that I tried for about a minute to figure him out, and if I couldn’t, this ball of frustration would accumulate in my gut and I felt like I was going to explode. With Nash, I was more patient. I wanted to figure him out. His cries broke me and pulled at my heart strings. Even if I was frustrated, I tried hard not to show it and always kept a soft voice. With Crue, I wanted to scream at him and shut the door to the room he was in to drown out his cries. I didn’t do that, but boy did I want to. Then I would feel guilty for feeling that way. I could look at him cry and feel nothing. This depressed me to no end. Why was I being like this? He is perfect, what do I have to be sad for?
I would be angry with Todd for not having psychic abilities. If I was was holding Crue and wanted a drink of water, for some reason I couldn’t put two words together to ask for what I wanted. All the words came out like a jumbled mess. Todd would ask me what I said and I would just scream, “Never mind, I’ll get it myself. To which he would give me an annoyed look and say something sarcastic, which would make me so angry I would proceed to tell him everything he did that day that upset me until I was hiccup crying and saying I wanted a divorce. I didn’t really want one, I said it more for shock value, which I have never been accustomed to doing. I’ve always prided myself on never saying those words unless I meant them, and now here I was saying it every other day just so he knew how truly pissed I was. Sometimes I did think about divorce…one reason being that I hated everyone, including him, and the second reason being because I felt so guilty for the way I was acting. I didn’t feel the need to have a spectator to my everyday meltdowns and manic behavior…seriously, when I am being irrational I know it, but once I’ve committed to it, I’m loyal.
I would cry about everything. God forbid I couldn’t wrap a spaghetti noodle around my fork. That shit would put me in a total meltdown. All I wanted to do was sleep, but I was so panicked about sleeping when Crue did that I had insomnia. I didn’t want to go anywhere. Todd would tell me that it may feel good to get out, and just the thought of showering exhausted me so much I would need a nap. I was angry that I couldn’t just dwell on everything sucky. I couldn’t grieve at the level I wanted, because now I had a baby to take care of. Crue was crushing my dreams of becoming an alcoholic hermit that stayed at home all day watching TV and eating until I had to be removed by one of those cranes because I could no longer carry my own weight to get out of my house. Damn him for making me take care of myself and damn Todd for……EVERYTHING!!
When I had my first OB appointment, Todd told me to mention it to the doctor. I’m like, “Mention what?” He said, “The possibility of medication for your depression.” Another comment I wanted to kill him for, but at this point he had nothing to lose. I was mad at him for everything. As I sat in the room waiting for the doctor to see me, I thought to myself that it may be a good idea to mention it. As soon as she walked in, she asked how I was doing. As I started to speak, I began crying uncontrollably and barely putting words together in any order that would make sense. Once I had gotten it all out, I stopped abruptly, looked up at her in total embarrassment and smiled. She smiled back. She listed the symptoms of postpartum depression and asked if I had any of them. Irritability, disconnected to baby, overly tired, insomnia, unable to speak clearly, crying for no reason, lack of interest in eating, overeating. I felt like she just described my personality to a T. Seriously, if I was on match.com and had to describe myself, I would list all of those things and maybe add lovable just to round it all out with a good trait to sell myself. I told her I felt this way, but it truly was no different then the depression I was feeling before Crue was born. I didn’t want to rely on medication to get me through it. I’m the kind of person who doesn’t even take Tylenol unless I’m dying. So the thought of taking a medication that I would have to eventually ween off of did not interest me. Plus, it was June. Everything felt worse this month. My doctor smiled and said, “Shelly you have a good head on your shoulders and a good support system. You will know when you need something and I will be here if and when you are ready.”
To this day, I haven’t taken anything. I have improved, for the most part, but am still unsocial and want to be alone most of the time. I’m still very easily frustrated and irritable. I only blame Todd for 50% of my problems instead of 99%. The best thing that has changed is my connection to Crue. He is my everything and I adore him. He truly makes me feel more like the old me than anything else. I catch myself laughing and smiling with him, and kissing him nonstop. Sometimes I’m so happy I feel like me again. Even if it’s only for a couple minutes, it gives me hope. Hope that these aches and pains are just growing pains, and that as Crue grows, so will my heart. That hole will always be there, but he fills every part of it that’s left, and in some moments makes it grow even bigger. My rainbow baby, he has saved my life in so many ways. Who needs medicine when you have 18 pounds of pure, innocent, giggly, sweet and slobbery love at your disposal at all times?