Monday, December 14, 2009


Some people bond with their babies instantly. I am not one of those people. After Brandt was born it took me a while to really fall in love with him, mostly because newborns are so demanding with very little return on your investment. It's no secret that I experienced a lot of anxiety and sadness the first few weeks after Brandt was born but I thought it was normal baby blues. I was wrong. Looking back I see how I suffered from post partum depression then, and I can see now how much better things have been this time around.

I'm enjoying Lillian so much more at this stage then when Brandt was young. It's not something I'm proud to admit, but when Brandt was only weeks old I was afraid of him. I felt incompetent and questioned every decision I made about how to care for him. How much & when he should sleep, eat, and be awake. I had the occasional good day but for the most part I was miserable because I felt so out of control & clueless. I cried a lot. This time I feel happy. Of course I started out feeling overwhelmed and scared, but I am doing so much better now and I can honestly say I feel so very lucky to have two really good kids. And I actually don't mind getting up at night to feed Lillian because it's quiet time where I can just hold her and be in the moment.

I never really understood depression. I kind of assumed people could choose to be happy if they really wanted to be. I never thought I had any risk of becoming depressed because I always had to be in control. I was reluctant to consider medication. I know now that depression isn't something you control ... it controls you. I wouldn't consider myself to be on the severe side of depression, but I experienced enough of it to understand that I couldn't get through it alone. I don't know how long I will be on medication but I definitely feel a positive improvement in my overall demeanor. I have more patience, I'm happier, I don't let little things get to me, I'm more tolerant, I don't get as agitated, and I stay fairly level headed most of the time. I haven't cried since my breakdown when Lillian was 1-2 weeks old.

Life is good.


Short and Sweet said...

Karen, you know how insidious depression can be because you saw how it affected me. I have noticed a profound difference in you this time around especially since you don't snap at me like you used to...thank God. It's nice to drive home from Tucson smiling instead of crying vowing to never speak to you again. You are a remarkable mother and I'm sure that the kids pick up on your calmness instead of the turmoil. Thank you for being a much more tolerant daughter and a happier mother to your two precious children. You really amaze me and I've learned much from observing you. You seem to sail through things effortlessly and what can be a mountain to me is only a minor bump in the road to you. Thank you for being happy...that is a wonderful gift.

Colleen said...

AWw...I don't know what made me cry more, your post, or your mom's response!

You are doing an amazing job! I can't wait to meet your two little ones and compare war stories!

Darna said...

Here I am, finally getting around to reading blogs...and this one hit home because of my personal battle. Good for you for finding peace with your need for medication and for recognizing that it doesn't make you any less of a wonderful mother or person!