Monday, June 1, 2009
My dad accompanied me to my follow-up visit at the birthing center. (Ian was working ) I did not feel "right," on the inside, but at least on the outside I was healing up just fine. The midwife knew I was struggling, as I had been calling the center repeatedly trying to get some answers. 3 different times staff from Labor of Love had made home visits postpartum, and had been on the phone with my husband or myself quite a bit during those first couple of weeks. I don't think they had ever seen a case like mine, and it only added to the hurt and humiliation to have to walk back into their office so "borderline." (One of the midwives had gone through depression before, and had advised me to seek help from and possibly check into the mental health unit at the hospital. She was concerned and a bit stern with me. At first I got angry, but now I advise immediate help on this issue. It can worsen and even "snap" someone into harmful behavior if left untreated.) Dad drove me back to my house, where I gathered up a few necessary items for Izzy and I for our stay at my parents house. I wouldn't need to bring my breast pump...I was now on medication and had to give that up. Israel has done great on formula, but I still get emotional even writing about this. Not only did I have to sacrifice giving this form of nutrition to my son, and miss out on the "bond," of nursing my first child, but because of the PPD, my feelings of failure and loss were compounded. We loaded up my son and my stuff and went to my parents' house. I felt a little hopeful at first and nicknamed it the "Healing House," planning to just try to rest up and get better-kind of like a retreat. Friends and church members (my Dad is a pastor) began to come over and visit us there, and continued to bring meals, cards, hugs and prayers. One of my dear friends, a nurse, brought over some anxiety pills for me to take to help me relax and sleep. (That was a new one for me! I am a pretty "natural" person, and would rather take vitamins.) I felt calmer, even "happy" for a short time, and cracked a couple of jokes. I took one more pill before bed, and actually fell asleep that night! My hubby stayed with me in my old bedroom, but the baby stayed in my parents room so Mom could take care of him through the night. Four hours later, I woke up in a panic. The drug had worn off and so did any sense of calm or control. A pattern of insomnia and anxiety set in all over again. I spent the next 2-3 hours fighting through the night on my Dad's recliner. All of the symptoms had returned, but with drug after-effects now added to the mix. I hated that night.
Posted by Jessica Goodman at 7:55 AM