This is a difficult topic. For several reasons. We live in a society that uses it as an excuse, or people who say they have it, when they have no idea where it even begins. It comes in many shapes, sizes and forms all together. For some, it’s just a day-to-day event, others it comes and goes, and some… it never goes away.
I have been diagnosed. Three times in fact, with depression, anxiety and Adjustment Disorder. When I was 12, 16 and 21. PPD after Little A was born 11 weeks ago. I’ve seen a therapist and a psychologist in the past. I stopped seeing mine shortly after meeting my partner. Life was going well. Still had struggling moments, but learned to cope steadily on my own. This has become difficult to do since becoming pregnant, even more so after Little A joined the world. So much so, I saw a therapist during my pregnancy and debated on going back to my psychologist presently.
It was hard to ask for help the first time, it’s even harder the second. I feel like a failure, not good enough for my self, let alone my children. I’m dealing with so much in my mind, and when I try to talk to my partner its “Let it go” or “Ignore it”. But if I have a break down and cry… its “I understand” and “you need to talk to me”. I can’t really expect him to understand. As much as he’s had his own life battles and hiccups, he hasn’t had anything compared to mine. Not that his are any less sad, scary or life changing. Just his hasn’t almost costed his life on several occasions.
There are a lot of reasons why I have issues struggling with my depression lately. Several come and go. If you’ve already looked into what Adjustment Disorder is, you will understand a little more as to why this occurs. Why some days are better than others. Normally, on a bad day, I just stay hidden away. During the bad weather, this is easier than when the weather is good. Reason being, during the bad weather, we hermit indoors. I can sit and binge watch TV and everyone assumes its normal. No one questions my quietness or want to be under a blanket and just stay on the couch. During the good weather, I’m questioned as to why I want to be indoors. Why I want to be alone and left to myself. I can’t just say “I need a few minutes” and be left alone. I need to explain why and where I am going. Not that it is really anyone’s damn business as to what is going on in my mind, but my spouse and his family seem to not believe in leaving people alone to cope and deal.
Understandably. They are a family that stands together and supports one another. They don’t understand I spent 12+ years coping and learning to deal on my own. They don’t understand that if I’m not given that time and space to express my emotions on my own, I will hold them back and boil them up inside and then unexpectedly it will come out. When it does come out, I have this urge to pack my children, myself, my dog and to escape. I don’t want to escape though, its just the fight and flight that is buried into me to protect myself and my children from anyone hurting us. I love my partner. I want a future with him. I want him to eventually be able to understand and for us to learn a way to get through my hard times together, but I just am not ready for that right now, and I don’t know how to explain that to him.
Right now… The issue is a specific person. The trigger was a simple photo, with simple lyrics. To everyone else it seems harmless and just a cute gesture. To me, it’s over stepping boundaries and taking away one thing that only I had. A moment of peace, a moment of safety and a moment of just me and Little A.
When I came into my relationship, I had to share everything. I feel like in a way I lost everything. My PS4, my drill, my furniture, my apartment (At the time), my bed, my space, my time alone, my dog, my child. It is petty minor objects and people you assume you would share within a growing family. However, to me, it was things and people I had never even considered sharing with another person. To me, they were mine and only mine. My responsibility to care for and maintain and raise and protect. That mine, became ours. and I feel like over night it happened. I didn’t have much choice or say. I feel like it was rushed too quickly, and when I wanted to start to pull back and slow down, I became pregnant. For someone with depression and anxiety… It was too much all at once, and now I’m just…. stuck there. I had nothing. No peace. Nothing of just mine. I struggle still letting go of the past and accept the future. So much so, buying a vacuum, gave me something of joy. It was something only I wanted to do. Silly… I know. But it grounded me. Then, Little A joined the world. I made a point to hide away a few moments in a day, right before she went to sleep, or first thing in the morning while everyone else was just waking up, sometimes even when changing her, to hum a simple tune. It relaxed her enough to sleep or calm down, and it relaxed me enough to enjoy the beauty of the created little person, to take in the marvel of my growing family, and to appreciate my life. It gave me peace after a stressful day. It gave me time to take a breath and prepare for the next day. To me, it was something small, but something important. It helped me cope with everything I couldn’t control around me. It was just mine.
And then this specific person took it away. and yet again, my world crumbled. She posted a photo of my child, with the lyrics to my hum, on a very public social media wall. She took away my moment, my peace, the only thing that was just mine.
For weeks I’ve listened to her say “Oh look at my baby” and tell people, strangers, people she knew but I’ve never seen before “Look at this. She is mine”. I had to “ignore” and “let go” and “Accept it” and “Oh she’s just be (her)”. I was told to stop being so emotional and that I needed to understand that “(she) was just being (she)”. Then, I had to give this woman something even greater and important… I had to make her the Godmother of my child. Because if I took that away, my life would become even more unbearable, and there was no escape to that. I am literally living it all over again. I realize these are just words and actions that have no meaning or comprehension to anyone reading this. I realize this sounds stupid, and childish and selfish to all you. But to me… Its like living with my mother all over again. I have to understand that this person has ‘issues’. I need to be understanding. I need to be supportive. I need to put my own issues, struggles and misunderstandings aside because this person is more important to those in my life.
Even to the man I love. Even to the one person who is supposed to put me and my children first… I’m to let it go, move on, and ignore it…. even if it’s just for a day.
So…. I will let it go. I will move on. I will ignore it. Because I am a mom, with two beautiful girls, who deserve more. I will never tell them to let it go, to move on, or to ignore it. I will always listen, and be there when they need me, give them space when they need space and let them know that no matter what, that one moment, of peace, of quiet, of freedom, will always be their moment. I will never let someone take that from them. They will never have to put their issues aside or deal with their struggles in silence. They will always be more important than anything and anyone else, at least to me.
I can’t change the past. I can just learn to deal with the effect it has had on me. I can only learn to find a new way to find that little bit of peace. That moment of just mine. It may take me some time, but I’ll find it again. Until then…