I know after Topher was born I was seriously depressed. Who wouldn't be? He was two months old and almost died twice! Spent half a month in the hospital most of it in pediatric intensive care. He had two emergency transports by ambulance from one hospital to another. So many IVs they had trouble getting them in. One IV infiltrated and his arm swelled up so bad that his poor little fingers looked like sausages that were gonna explode.
I felt horrible. I know it wasn't my fault. However, I'm his mother. I take care of him. I am responsible for him. I carried him for 9 months and gave birth to him. If not my fault whose. I was more than ready to take all the blame for it. Making matter worse were that I kept listening to others over the phone and questioning my own gut. I knew he was doing bad, but I talked my self out of taking him to the hospital. When I finally took him to see the pediatrician he was direct admitted to the hospital. I was told to go straight to the hospital and not even go home.
Making matters worse were the fact that when he didn't get better they discovered he was born with a condition called Laryngomalacia. I was horror stricken. If he was born with the problem then it was definitely all my fault! He was growing in my belly and I was supposed to do everything right. I must have done something wrong! I have migraines which were amplified by my pregnancies. I occasionally had to take a low dose muscle relaxer. I was sure this was all my fault.
My depression took a toll on all my relationships even my marriage. I couldn't talk to anyone because no one understood. I felt like a failure and all alone. Everyone I tried to talk to told me the truth it wasn't my fault, and at times I was told don't be silly or ridiculous. That just made everything worse. I stopped talking to people, and became very distant from the ones I loved the most. It took a long time but I learned to talk to my husband even if I have unpleasant things to say. I learned they were right and I was wrong. (Don't tell them I said that..I'm just kidding)
However, at that point in my life I didn't need to hear the way I felt was wrong. Those were the true deep and dark feelings in my heart. I knew that rationally they were irrational thoughts. It didn't matter. I couldn't just flip a switch and turn them off. Nothing I did could change those feelings. I needed someone to listen to me and validate my feelings as being ok, but not reality.
I tried to be the best mother and I know I am a good mother. Unfortunately, at the time I knew it but didn't feel it. If that makes any sense. There is a difference between what you know in your head and what you feel in your heart. I think it was until both my heart and head were on the same page that things finally got better.
I think at some point I almost lost the only man I've ever loved. Then I realized somethings gotta change. How did we get here? We did some counseling, and spoke with the pastor. I did a little counseling. It didn't really help and honestly just cost money! In the end it was us. Me wanting to change, and the love and devotion of my husband. I'm not perfect yet!!! But I am happy, and enjoying my life. I am so blessed to have my husband and three amazing kids! I thank God for them everyday.
I have found it very helpful to keep a gratitude journal. Every night I write 5 things I am thankful for. Some are big like I'm grateful for my kids. Some silly I'm grateful for a nice sunny day, or I'm grateful Topher didn't have any tantrums today (yep it happened once)! It changes your outlook from the negative to the positive. I find myself looking for things during the day to put in my journal!!! I'm seeking out and cherishing the positives rather than dwelling on the negatives.
I just really wanted to share this in case anyone out there is feeling really down. Everyone has black days, weeks, months, and years. Please, seek help if you ever feel like hurting yourself or your child. Life is a special wonderful gift, and you can't take things like that back you can only spend the rest of your life regretting them!