Postnatal Depression Awareness Week runs from 4th- 10th September this year.
I’m a firm believer people come into your life for a reason.
Rachael Logue, a lovely lady I met at Pregnancy yoga, was pivotal in my postnatal journey.
At the time, she was setting up Tots and Tums.
These sessions alone got me out of the house with my tiny new bundle.
To have a coffee.
To chat to other new mums.
To escape my own four walls for someone else’s.
Motherhood is a crazy ride that you’re thrust into.
And once upon a time, it was a community – a village even- that helped raise a baby.
Now, despite social media providing a means of online community, we are actually more isolated in ‘real life’ than we once were.
Which can enhance those already overwhelming feelings a new parent (or even a second or third time parent) is experiencing.
Rachael was diagnosed with Postnatal depression last year.
A year later and Rachael’s doing much better and Tots and Tums has gone from strength to strength.
It’s now rebranded as Relax … Holistic Baby Fitness.
There’s so much happening it makes me want to be on maternity leave again!
Joking aside, this is a great support network offering baby classes, fitness clubs and relaxation sessions.
Rachael has pooled her energy into helping other parents by providing that community of support.
That community that helps you raise a baby.
Read Rachael’s story again below …
I didn’t recognise that I was suffering from Postnatal Depression straight away, despite being trained in PND and Mental Health and previously suffering depression.
You see, my own business collapsed three years ago when the funding ceased. I had to let go of twelve members of staff; twelve local people all with families to look after and roofs over their heads – twelve people who had bills to pay.
Just like me.
I suffered from anxiety which turned into depression.
Through suffering depression three years ago, I recognise that I have manias: On a high I can take loads of work on and I feel like I could conquer the world. Last week , I had three really good days where I was involved in Jolly Babies, Lush Tums Postnatal Yoga and then a day trip to Whitby with my family. On a low, I want to shut myself back in my bubble, away from the world.
I’ve learnt that it’s all about understanding me as a person.
Which I thought I did when it came to having my second child, Evie, back in February.
I had Evie at 09.50 in the morning and I was out of hospital and home by 5pm – make-up on the lot – getting on with motherhood.
My feet hadn’t touched the ground.
I went back to work after six weeks on the Postnatal Depression project that I had created while I was pregnant.
I was busy; I’d get up and take Cameron to school and then I was off working at the groups that I’d set up.
I was focusing so much on my family and supporting other families in my work that I completely forgot about myself.
My breakdown point was when I’d left the house really early one morning. I was just walking around Blyth in the rain in what I can only describe as a confused mist. I felt lost and numb.
I remember the day. It was a Tuesday.
I couldn’t think straight.
I found myself walking towards and going intoTalking Matters on the main street in Blyth. They couldn’t see me straightaway but they did give me a leaflet with a contact number on. I rang the number and talked, which helped a lot.
I knew what I needed to do but I just hadn’t been thinking straight. I made a doctors appointment that day.
I gained support from the doctor who didn’t dismiss it as just the ‘baby blues’. They prescribed me some medication – sertraline. I’m now into week eight of taking this.
When I was suffering Postnatal Depression, I wasn’t one for not getting up and ready in a morning; I had to do this to take my oldest to school. It was the little things – like the thought of folding clothes. Simple chores became too much to deal with. I also went into a zone where I didn’t want to see or contact anybody. I wanted to stay at home, just me and Evie.
I retreated into my own little bubble.
You hear of mother’s not bonding with their babies, but my motherly instinct and love for Evie was over-the-top love. I’d do things like take Evie off my partner when he held her.
I’ve found that you do forget about yourself and therefore you do need to take time out. I did postnatal Yoga in Ridley Park on Friday and, although I had both kids with me, it was still time doing something for myself. Cameron even enjoyed it, it was accessible to things he never thought he would be interested in. It showed him that it’s not all about xbox and school, that it’s natural to go into the park and get involved in other activities with other people.
I’m slowly getting back on track now and I’m taking things one step at a time. I’m in a good place now and getting out and just talking with other parent’s has made a huge impact already. I’ve found that it’s good to talk and not suffer in silence.
PND Awareness Week is all about that – raising awareness of those feelings of postnatal depression.
If you’ve read this today and it resonates with how you’re feeling- please – speak up.
There is support out there.
To find out more on where to get help or how to get involved check out the PANDAS website.
You are not alone in this.
This is the motherhood.
We are the sisterhood.
Love Missuswolf xxx