There was a time, not so long ago, when I would not move. I could not move. I even thought I should not move. So, I didn’t. I stayed in the bed. All day. Now, some may think: Well, good for you. I’d do that if I had the chance.
I didn’t tell you I was supposed to be taking care of my children. I had a one-year-old son and a two-year-old daughter. But I let them roam free around the house, while my husband was at work and I was in the bed.
Now some may sum me up as a bad mother. Don’t worry, I summed myself up as a bad mother so many times I lost count. But, after years of therapy and research and tears and anger, I began to understand and realize that I was sick. I suffered from postpartum psychosis. It’s a postpartum mental illness—the most severe form—the strikes mothers sometime after giving birth. You don’t know if you will be “that mother” until you become that mother.
It caused all types of issues within myself, and all types of issues within my household. Not only did I suffer from psychosis, depression, anxiety, apathy and anger, but my husband suffered. All the work a mother would typically take care of, he had to do. Then on top of that, he had to take care of me. Then work. Then worry. Then comprehend. Then keep it together.
It took three years for me to heal significantly, though I’m still healing now, five years after my son’s birth. I now move. I now get out of the bed. Today, June 21, 2013, the first day of summer, I decided to move even more. Instead of just getting out of the bed, I decided to climb. Today I climbed out of darkness. I climbed out of the bed, grabbed my babies, who are now 5 & 6, and took a beautiful walk in First Landing State Park in Virginia Beach, VA.
This was a way to raise money and awareness for postpartum mood disorders. It also represented getting out of the funk I’d been in. I did this for many other mothers, who are still dealing with PPMDs or who are about to and have no idea.
I hope that it helps people to stop being afraid of their illnesses. We didn’t make ourselves sick. It happened, but we can get help. We can get better and we can be the beautiful, strong mothers we planned to be. We just have to push ourselves to move and climb out and climb up.
May you all have a wonderfully long summer day and maybe enjoy a tall glass of overly-sweetened iced tea.
Hugs and Hi-Fives…. Miss Moody Mommy!