Welcome Charity

This is the first guest post here at ppdtojoy.com
It will not be the last. Mothers who are struggling with guilt and postpartum mood disorders are invited to share their stories with me, and each week I will be sharing their stories with you.

So welcome, Charity Cole!
Of
www.gigglesandgrimaces.blogspot.com fame.
Don’t you just love that title? The blog is every bit as touching. She is a #ppdchat mama I met on twitter. Follow her @signingcharity and join us and the rest of the #ppdchat friends for the best twitterchat ever! Every Monday at 1:00pm and 8:30pm EST.
Now I’ll give Charity the mike:

My journey into postpartum depression started like you might expect, severe baby blues, crying for no reason, extreme emotional responses.  Ugh.  Those two weeks after my baby was born were rough, really rough.  Then we got to week 3 and I felt so much better.  Wow.  I was no longer falling into a black hole.  I was going to escape this feeling and get to bask in how much I loved having three little girls!

Yup, I got to the live the dream.  For a whoppin’ week.  Then the crying started again.  And my 3 year old and 4 year old were aware enough to see mama was crying, so I started hiding in the basement to cry.  Whenever I went to do laundry or get something out of the pantry, I would burst into tears.  Calm myself down and get back up to the girls.  It became in essence an automatic response, basement=tears.
But sometimes I felt like I was going to fall apart before I could get to my basement hiding spot.  So what to do?  I didn’t want  my girls to be sad or upset because mama was falling apart.  Any time they were sad, the guilt was horrendous.  What was I doing to them?  Did they think they made mama sad (nothing could be further from the truth, I was falling apart, but truly loved having three girls more than I had enjoyed having two)? So on and so forth, I worried.
Soon I found if I sat down, I cried; simple enough, I quit sitting down. The girls and I stayed busy.  We went to the library, we went to the park, we went to another park.  We baked cookies and pie and brownies.  And I cleaned.  I didn’t want my hubby to suffer with a messy house.  Not only did I stay busy so I did not cry as much, but it also helped relieve some of my “antsiness.”  So I got busier and busier.  Busier and busier.
Through this I stayed in touch with my midwife.  She started to notice I was going at a frantic pace, no longer just distracting myself, but desperate to be busy so I wouldn’t cry and my girls wouldn’t be upset or sad.
I knew something was wrong.  I knew things weren’t right, but postpartum depression?  Just didn’t seem to fit.
I wasn’t sleeping extra, I wasn’t sleeping much at all as a matter of fact, I didn’t look at my life and feel sad, I loved my girls and had bonded great with our new addition.  So what was it?
Turns out is was PPD and postpartum anxiety.  My midwife got me to consent to medication.  We tried one.  It helped a little, so we tried more.  That pushed me over the edge.  Then I really couldn’t stop moving and doing.  The anxiety was off the charts.  I wanted to drop my girls off to my midwife, let her take them home and love them and I would just disappear.
So, one morning, I got the girls dressed, their favorite toys, sippy cups of milk and went to my midwife’s office.  She saw me immediately.  She came in the room and I fell apart.  I have truly never cried so hard in all my life, as I asked her “will you just take them home and love them?”  She hugged me and let me sob.  Her office staff got my girls out of the room so they didn’t have to see mama so upset and so began a long day that ended with me hospitalized for PPD.
It was the hardest thing I have ever been through.  I felt so bad having to be away from my three month old who had never even had a bottle before that night and felt like a failure for falling apart.  Why couldn’t I just stay busy enough?  Why couldn’t I be a strong enough person?
That was 5 months ago.  I am now on meds that work and I understand that for this season I need those meds.  Do I wish I could go without them?  Sure do.  Do I still struggle?  Sure do.  But now, along with some of the ups and downs, I know I am doing what I need to in order to be healthy for me, my girls and my husband.  Now when I do something with my girls, it is so we can have fun, not to frantically trying to escape myself.

I have found great support in a doctor able to get me the right medication, while still allowing me to breastfeed my daughter, my midwife who has never wavered in her faith that I am a good mom and will only get stronger, sharing my journey on my blog, several postpartum websites, including this one, and on twitter via #ppdchat.
When my guilt gets to me I have this quote from my midwife that I look at “your girls are beautiful and strong; they are truly nurtured.”  That is what someone from the outside looking in sees, that is what I need to see.
6 Responses to Welcome Charity
  1. mammacockatoo
    May 6, 2011 | 8:06 am

    Thank you for sharing your story. I’m so glad you have support, both at home and online, to help you through the rollercoaster ride of recovery.

  2. MamaRobinJ
    May 3, 2011 | 9:29 pm

    Beautiful post, Charity! It sounds like you handled it well, and I’m so glad you are getting better. There will be bad days, and we’ll be right there with you.
    MamaRobinJ recently posted..Master of The Zone

  3. Charity
    May 2, 2011 | 5:28 pm

    Thanks for visiting here Kimberly. I appreciate it!
    Charity recently posted..It Might Be Hope- from PPD to Joy!

  4. Kimberly
    May 2, 2011 | 5:11 pm

    Great post, Charity!!! You are an inspiration!

  5. Charity
    May 2, 2011 | 2:06 pm

    Thanks! She is the best. Thanks for the opportunity to blog here! Today’s #ppdchat was awesome!

  6. Yael
    May 2, 2011 | 1:20 pm

    I’m so happy that you had such a great midwife! And I’m even happier that things are getting better for you. Hugs all the way from Ithaca.

Welcome Charity

This is the first guest post here at ppdtojoy.com
It will not be the last. Mothers who are struggling with guilt and postpartum mood disorders are invited to share their stories with me, and each week I will be sharing their stories with you.

So welcome, Charity Cole!
Of
www.gigglesandgrimaces.blogspot.com fame.
Don’t you just love that title? The blog is every bit as touching. She is a #ppdchat mama I met on twitter. Follow her @signingcharity and join us and the rest of the #ppdchat friends for the best twitterchat ever! Every Monday at 1:00pm and 8:30pm EST.
Now I’ll give Charity the mike:

My journey into postpartum depression started like you might expect, severe baby blues, crying for no reason, extreme emotional responses.  Ugh.  Those two weeks after my baby was born were rough, really rough.  Then we got to week 3 and I felt so much better.  Wow.  I was no longer falling into a black hole.  I was going to escape this feeling and get to bask in how much I loved having three little girls!

Yup, I got to the live the dream.  For a whoppin’ week.  Then the crying started again.  And my 3 year old and 4 year old were aware enough to see mama was crying, so I started hiding in the basement to cry.  Whenever I went to do laundry or get something out of the pantry, I would burst into tears.  Calm myself down and get back up to the girls.  It became in essence an automatic response, basement=tears.
But sometimes I felt like I was going to fall apart before I could get to my basement hiding spot.  So what to do?  I didn’t want  my girls to be sad or upset because mama was falling apart.  Any time they were sad, the guilt was horrendous.  What was I doing to them?  Did they think they made mama sad (nothing could be further from the truth, I was falling apart, but truly loved having three girls more than I had enjoyed having two)? So on and so forth, I worried.
Soon I found if I sat down, I cried; simple enough, I quit sitting down. The girls and I stayed busy.  We went to the library, we went to the park, we went to another park.  We baked cookies and pie and brownies.  And I cleaned.  I didn’t want my hubby to suffer with a messy house.  Not only did I stay busy so I did not cry as much, but it also helped relieve some of my “antsiness.”  So I got busier and busier.  Busier and busier.
Through this I stayed in touch with my midwife.  She started to notice I was going at a frantic pace, no longer just distracting myself, but desperate to be busy so I wouldn’t cry and my girls wouldn’t be upset or sad.
I knew something was wrong.  I knew things weren’t right, but postpartum depression?  Just didn’t seem to fit.
I wasn’t sleeping extra, I wasn’t sleeping much at all as a matter of fact, I didn’t look at my life and feel sad, I loved my girls and had bonded great with our new addition.  So what was it?
Turns out is was PPD and postpartum anxiety.  My midwife got me to consent to medication.  We tried one.  It helped a little, so we tried more.  That pushed me over the edge.  Then I really couldn’t stop moving and doing.  The anxiety was off the charts.  I wanted to drop my girls off to my midwife, let her take them home and love them and I would just disappear.
So, one morning, I got the girls dressed, their favorite toys, sippy cups of milk and went to my midwife’s office.  She saw me immediately.  She came in the room and I fell apart.  I have truly never cried so hard in all my life, as I asked her “will you just take them home and love them?”  She hugged me and let me sob.  Her office staff got my girls out of the room so they didn’t have to see mama so upset and so began a long day that ended with me hospitalized for PPD.
It was the hardest thing I have ever been through.  I felt so bad having to be away from my three month old who had never even had a bottle before that night and felt like a failure for falling apart.  Why couldn’t I just stay busy enough?  Why couldn’t I be a strong enough person?
That was 5 months ago.  I am now on meds that work and I understand that for this season I need those meds.  Do I wish I could go without them?  Sure do.  Do I still struggle?  Sure do.  But now, along with some of the ups and downs, I know I am doing what I need to in order to be healthy for me, my girls and my husband.  Now when I do something with my girls, it is so we can have fun, not to frantically trying to escape myself.

I have found great support in a doctor able to get me the right medication, while still allowing me to breastfeed my daughter, my midwife who has never wavered in her faith that I am a good mom and will only get stronger, sharing my journey on my blog, several postpartum websites, including this one, and on twitter via #ppdchat.
When my guilt gets to me I have this quote from my midwife that I look at “your girls are beautiful and strong; they are truly nurtured.”  That is what someone from the outside looking in sees, that is what I need to see.
6 Responses to Welcome Charity
  1. mammacockatoo
    May 6, 2011 | 8:06 am

    Thank you for sharing your story. I’m so glad you have support, both at home and online, to help you through the rollercoaster ride of recovery.

  2. MamaRobinJ
    May 3, 2011 | 9:29 pm

    Beautiful post, Charity! It sounds like you handled it well, and I’m so glad you are getting better. There will be bad days, and we’ll be right there with you.
    MamaRobinJ recently posted..Master of The Zone

  3. Charity
    May 2, 2011 | 5:28 pm

    Thanks for visiting here Kimberly. I appreciate it!
    Charity recently posted..It Might Be Hope- from PPD to Joy!

  4. Kimberly
    May 2, 2011 | 5:11 pm

    Great post, Charity!!! You are an inspiration!

  5. Charity
    May 2, 2011 | 2:06 pm

    Thanks! She is the best. Thanks for the opportunity to blog here! Today’s #ppdchat was awesome!

  6. Yael
    May 2, 2011 | 1:20 pm

    I’m so happy that you had such a great midwife! And I’m even happier that things are getting better for you. Hugs all the way from Ithaca.