I was debating posting this but in the end decided it helps to share, even if sometimes you feel you are shouting into an empty room.In the early days after having a baby, any mention of having down days immediately means people think you might have PND, and this discourages any talk of the times when you are just feeling a bit rubbish, and that that is ok and perfectly normal.
I’ve had a few of those days lately, as well as days when you feel like it’s going pretty well – that familiar roller coaster.
The early days can be boring, monotonous and draining when you question everything you are doing and feel you are rubbish at all of it.
The tiredness seems never ending, you wake each day with a sore stomach from a c-section and sore boobs where you are struggling with breast feeding, constant reminders that your body has failed you.
Your brain feels like it will never be stimulated again and you’ve lost yourself. You want to be more than an incubator and a food source but can’t put a voice to those feelings for fear of being seen as selfish.
You feel isolated and alone, that you can’t give enough time to your older child and are not grateful enough for your new baby.
You long for time for yourself whilst also wanting to cherish the time with your children.
You question your mothering abilities as you want to do adult things again too (even though you know one is not a reflection on the other).
You appreciate help but hate asking for it and everyone else seems to be doing it better.
It’s bloody hard and you just want a hug not a comparison of who is doing the most.
I wish it was easier to move away from the guilt women feel around these early conflicting feelings, or at least the guilt I feel.
It doesn’t seem to be something the men in our lives suffer with as much – partly down to the expectations of society.
Here’s to challenging the stereotypes, encouraging more openness about perinatal mental health and getting the support we need, in whatever form that takes.
P.S. Today was a better day – mainly because I got some sleep!