I always thought Baby Blues and Postpartum Depression was the thought of wanting to harm yourself or your baby. It wasn't until I was talking to my cousin that I realized that feeling overwhelmed could also fit in that category. When I started writing this I did a Google search and came across this link on fitPregnancy and Baby that really hit home.
Let me start with we were released from the hospital right at 24 hours after giving birth! I could have stayed but we had some other factors play into it...mainly 2 other children and no one to watch them. We found out while in the hospital my mom couldn't find a sub so they ended up staying overnight in the hospital with us. I honestly felt great and on top of the world fast forward 2 days and we went in confident to our first checkup and they became concerned he hadn't gained weight and was still pretty jaundice looking. This is my 3rd time through this and 2nd time with this same situation. I wasn't overly concerned but we made a follow-up appointment and his growth continued to slow. Now I was getting worried, not about his weight gain as much as wondering if I wasn't producing milk.
There were a few things that happened that I think contributed to him not gaining weight, one being he was constantly spitting up. He had a little testing done but everything led to it is normal and the reason he is choking is because it went up his nose. This kid pukes through his nose frequently and his choking would scare us, he still sleeps in our room because he did it up until a couple weeks ago. We are in the process of transferring him now that we have a video monitor but it was some of the scariest nights just barely asleep so you could hear if he was breathing.
Supplementing was not helping his weight gain and the medication I was on causes drowsiness which I totally forgot until I went in again and was feeling so drained when I was reminded. On the plus side it did help my supply increase. We also discovered he had a slight tongue tie at 2 weeks.
I was just hanging on making it through each day, still exhausted and feeling like everything was piling up. I couldn't catch a break but at my 8 week postpartum checkup my doctor asked how long I was nursing on each side and about my diet...things began to change. Once I extended his feeding to 20 minutes a side he started making progress. At his 5 month checkup in February he was actually on the chart again at 5%...yes that does make me excited! Yesterday he weighed in just over 15lbs and while it is small he is still on the charts and gaining, just slowly.
Here is the thing I let his weight issues eat at me, I gave in to using food to "comfort" myself gaining quite a bit of weight which then turned into a hate of any pictures where you can see below my neck...who am I kidding didn't like pictures of myself at all. If I am being completely honest...I still don't but I'm getting better.
Looking back on it the first few months I may have had mild postpartum depression. My symptoms included guilt, quick temper (still working on that one), trouble concentrating (why I haven't blogged in a few months), and being overwhelmed.
Help is typically hard to get up the nerve to ask for but I did. The thing is I wasn't asking for help emotionally, but instead the physical. I got to the point where I was asking for help to clean the house, maintain the yard, or encouragement (granted this one wasn't as direct). My family was to far to help with these every day tasks and those closest helped with food. I know they had the best intentions with advice and suggestions on people I could hire or things I should try. BUT I just really wanted to know that they were willing to come and help me catch up on life so I wasn't so stressed about playing catch up down the road.
This isn't an easy topic and if it wasn't watching someone else go through it I wouldn't have had the realization that I am finally on the other side. I still have some work to do but we are putting new routines together, giving more responsibilities to the boys, and learning to let go a little.