Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Feeling the same again

I've been pitifully battling post weaning depression.
I didn't experience postpartum depression with Theodore, but a month after weaning him I was down in the dumps.

Prior to this I didn't know depression could be associated with weaning, but apparently it can be.

Sometimes I felt angry . . . and I yelled.
And then I felt guilty.
Sometimes I self-loathed . . and my heart cankered.
Sometimes I felt empty . . . despite desperate efforts to be filled.
Sometimes I just had an aching heart.
And sometimes I felt nothing at all--and that might have been the hardest.

I remember one afternoon I was washing dishes and the achy heart returned. It was so achy that it made me sick and I cried. I hated myself. I felt completely awful about me. I tried my hardest but I could not turn a positive thought on my sad self.

My sweet boys were in the family room. I could hear them playing with cars, crashing them, giggling, crawling around, and it didn't fill me with joy. I felt nothing. This made me feel worse. I wished that I wanted to run in there and smile at them and play on the floor and enjoy them. But I couldn't and I didn't. All I wanted to do was walk out the back door. Instead all I could do was cry, and continue washing dishes.

Where was the old me?

I needed peace. I needed to be found.

After much prayer, self reflection and repentance, a loving Heavenly Father helped me heal by giving me women.
My sister, my mother, my dearest friends were like angels to me.
They spoke words of peace and comfort to my aching soul!
They helped me see that I'm not alone and that I am good, and that I can be me again. I'm so grateful for these angels.
I'm especially thankful for the Savior who has never left me alone, and is the One who heals me and makes me whole again. By living the gospel of Jesus Christ we develop within ourselves a living spring that will quench eternally our thirst for happiness, peace, and everlasting life.

The beautiful news is that after this painful experience I am feeling like the old me again, except better. Stronger. Humbled.
I am so grateful for an ever-loving husband who is eternally patient and kind, and for children who are incredibly resilient and who frankly forgive everyday. How blessed I am!

I also found solace in her words, "it can be over now", and hers, "don't carpe diem".

Ahhh. And now, on to better, brighter days.


Rachel said...

You are an amazing woman, Rach.

Alysa said...

I saw that "don't carpe diem" article back in early January and loved it! I tried to read it to Jacob -- he just didn't get it. Anyway. I thought it was great.

I had a unique (for me) weaning experience with Levi. He quit me! Just totally quit, cold turkey, one day. I was offended. Frustrated. Hurt. I could totally see how post-weaning depression would be a thing. I think the only reason I didn't get it was because we found out about his allergies at the same time and the Holy Ghost whispered to me that he needed to stop nursing, for his health (since I was not stopping eating his allergens).

Emily Savage said...

Oh Rachel, it pains my heart to know that you were hurting so much! But at the same time, it gives me comfort to know that even YOU (who have been such a wonderful example to me of a strong and caring mother, who helped me know what kind of mother I want to be when I needed it) can also have low moments like the rest of us :)

Post partum is so real. It's awful and unfair, but so real. I'm so glad you were able to find comfort and joy again!

Meg Morley Walter said...

Thanks for sharing this. So often other blogs make me feel like I'm the only person who ever feels anything but sublimely happy. It's so refreshing to know that someone who is as good a mom and as good a person as you has their moments of vulnerability. Those hormones don't mess around...it's scary. I'm so glad you're feeling better.

danette said...

I had no Idea that you can have depression after you stop nursing. It makes since. I was having a really hard time after I stopped nursing Eli. Not only did I stop nursing but I also had my first period in 2 years. Lets just say I felt exactly how you felt.

I am so sorry. I wish I could have helped you.

I love you and are glad you are my sister in law.

sarah e. said...

So glad you are feeling yourself again! It's no fun to have those feelings. I agree that those days where I've just felt nothing are maybe the hardest. (Though I do hate feeling angry almost as much because it's not like me and it makes me feel really guilty to snap at the kids or other loved ones.) Thanks for your testimony. You are an amazing person.

Lindsey said...

Rach, thanks so much for sharing this. I got post weaning depression with Carly, when she self-weaned at 6 months. I didn't really talk about it with anyone except my family because I felt embarrassed. It was the hardest most dark time in my life, so I understand what you're talking about. I love that you are willing to share what you went through because it helps others (like me) realize how many other people have been through trials and come out stronger! You're are awesome.