Tuesday, February 7, 2012

it can be over now.

I've been ferociously battling postpartum depression. I say "I've been" when I should be saying "we've been" battling. How could something so light-consuming leave everyone it touches shining brightly?

When I am depressed my reactions rage as if I've no fuse at all. Instant explosion. I can remember the shocked look of fear in their faces as I've flipped like an electric-chair switch, yelling. Yelling. I never want to see those faces again.

Then guilt consumes me, for I have so much yet I feel so unhappy. I don't feel worthy to pray for help, so I don't, even though I know the Lord would answer.

This last week, though, something clicked in me. I was wallowing in self-pity, refusing to pray and I did what I can only describe as "snapping out of it." I saw my children growing up into the people they would be if I kept this up. I saw Duke and me, our heavenly marriage turning sour in my continued grief. Those images knocked me to my knees. And then He was there to catch me.

Since then I've hardly been able to leave my children's bedsides at night. I want to be with them as desperately as I wanted to escape. I kiss my husband with passion when he walks through the door, when I would have unlocked it for him and turned, walking away from his embrace. My once cold heart is burning.

And they all forgave me, without hesitation. Duke's heart has been warm for me through my dark hour, only I didn't believe that he could possibly love me that way. The boys graciously accept my kisses and hugs as if I'd never been misery embodied. Baby is none-the-wiser. Children have resilient hearts, and for that I thank God. The only lasting casualty was my hair, which I chopped off in a symbolic cleansing of self, and even that will grow back.

You may be thinking about previous posts and pictures wondering where this sad woman I speak of was hiding. In between posts. There are things that not even the most dedicated blogger dares photograph and share. I've been posting the blessings of a full life but I haven't included my numbness to their grandeur.

Is there an expression more wretchedly grateful than "thank you?" I need deeper words to say to

Duke for never giving up on me.

Mom and dad for rescuing me time and time again.

Siblings for bringing fresh breath to my dying days.

Friends for feeding my confidence with kindness.

Babies for extending your unending trust to your imperfect mother.

Duke again for carrying the burdens I dropped, with my sad self slung over your shoulders.

Heavenly Father for sending the above mentioned to me. For giving me your confidence, kindness, life, trust, help, and saving grace through them. And for breathing peace and power into my soul, taking the slum out of my person.



I have many pictures from the past few weeks that I need to post. But I needed to say this first. It can be over now.

16 comments:

Trina Hayes said...

i love that you embrace your vulnerability in such a gracious and humble way. you are an inspiration to me.

Danielle O. said...

Wow. From someone that doesn't know you but likes to check into your sweet blog, thank you so much for your words. Your blog is one of the few that makes me feel good about life and want to be a better wife and mother. I too have three little boys and a little girlie on the way and I am always exhausted, overwhelmed, anxious, sad, feeling guilty but then happy, feeling so blessed and grateful for my life. It is sort of a vicious cycle but I really, really appreciate you being honest and making me feel like I am not a horrible person for having similar feelings and yelling to the point of seeing little boy faces hiding. Forgiving children and husbands teach me so much! You seem like an amazing mother and person and I just can't express how grateful I am for your words!

prettybaby said...

i didn't experience postpartum depression, but i did experience antepartum depression with my son & it was so very dreadful, it's still hard to explain to ppl who have never felt it. my heart goes out to you, having so many little ones to look after and to feel such a dreadful force, it is mind boggling. when i went thru it i honestly couldn't imagine having my normal brain back, but indeed it came back and of course, i was stronger. sending you a prayer xx

Rachel said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for writing this. I love you for it. It was beautifully written and the words are exactly what so many of us feel but cannot express the way you did in this post.

Zak and Allysia said...

I suffered from post partum depression after I had Camden. It seemed nothing I did or. saw could pull me out of it's grasp. Like swimming into a patch of seaweed, the more I struggled and fought to free myself, the more hopelessly entwined I became. After five months I noticed I was not just sad, angry and detached any longer but I had become physically unable to perform ordinary daily tasks. Washing dishes may as well have been scaling Everest. It took me several months of counseling and nearly two years on mood-enhancing (personality killing, joy-limiting) medications. I feel robbed of the simple joys of life during that time. I missed the infantcy of my sweet boy because I didn't get help when I should have. Even now I want so much to have more children but am terrified of any possibility of a repeat experience. I am glad to hear that you have found a ray of light in so much darkness and that you have an extended family close by that you can call on for support.

joolee said...

i've never experienced what you have. i can't say i know exactly how it feels. but i have been guilty of all those things as well, and NOT in the name of postpartum depression. my knees should be throbbing with all the time i SHOULD be spending kneeling on them. it's always been a constant, constant struggle for me to remember Him above! thank you for sharing this, megan! hugs to you.

Rachel and Todd said...

Oh what a beautiful woman you are! I've felt the same so many times--recently as I weaned little Theo (did you know you can get depressed post-weaning? I didn't until this time). Oh, hormones, I hate 'em (and I love them, too, I guess). It's incredible that even though one can count so many blessings and know the richness of life and family, she can still feel nothing, or self-hatred, or anger, or extreme sadness--and sometimes all at the same time.
Thank you for posting this! I've written post after post trying to express the same as you, not brave enough to actually post them. It is so good to know that I'm not alone and that I too can shore up and keep moving on without letting guilt hold me back. I love how you are so forgiving of yourself.

one of these days were gonna set this cirus down. said...

Thank you for being real! Your always inspiring!

SuzyYates said...

My postpartum experience exactly. It's not something I enjoy thinking about and I am so grateful that my boys will not remember the miserable days. But you always seem to put everything in a way that anyone can understand and they love you all the more for it. Thanks for sharing your most vulnerable thoughts with us. : )

Matthew James said...

I love you!

Mrs N said...

This postpartum time left me feeling pretty low. I'm just barely starting to claw my way out of the hole. Thanks for posting this, as I'm sure it wasn't easy, but I think you can see from the comments that a lot of people can empathize with the feelings. I hate thinking back to my sweet babies' faces when I am unkind to them. I'm so thankful for God's grace, that He gives me so many chances to improve.

Staci said...

you are so wonderful...im always envious of your relationship to your babies and you always seem to say and do things perfectly. It's good to know you are human and we've all been there. You continue to inspire me :)

She Loves The Color Pink said...

You wrote about this so well. I deal with this too and it is so hard. It is the happiest time in life yet you feel so hopeless. I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one!

Fata Verde said...

>:D<

aproapealb said...

Congratulations for your courage!
You're a very inspiring person!

lomas family said...

Loved this and know this all to well...