Breastmilk is often called “liquid gold.” And I wanted to provide that liquid gold to my baby, to give her the best start possible in life. But I learned that when breastfeeding starts affecting your mental health, it’s no longer liquid gold.
When my daughter was a newborn and COVID was brand new, my worst fear was her catching it and ending up in the hospital. I had to face that fear recently, but it wasn’t COVID that put us there.
All babies are hard, there’s no denying that. They are entirely dependent on their parents for everything and all of their basic needs, and they don’t sleep through the night for a while. But what’s it like to parent a baby who just seems like so much MORE than everyone else?
I didn’t think that I could have PPD, because I thought that I had prepared and done everything I could to be ready for the arrival of my daughter. PPD doesn’t discriminate, and I am part of the 1 in 7 moms that experience a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder.
My entire parenthood journey has taken place during a global pandemic. My daughter has never been in a store or a restaurant, and at times it feels like the rest of the world has moved on while leaving behind parents of children too young to be vaccinated. I’m a mom to a toddler during a global pandemic, and I am not okay.
Parenting can feel overwhelming and intense for pretty much all parents. As a Highly Sensitive Person, however, sometimes it seems like I’m dealing with entirely different level of overwhelm.
Survivors of perinatal mood and anxiety disorders not only deal with intrusive thoughts, depressive episodes, and intense anxiety; they also feel shame and guilt due to the stigma surrounding mental health complications after welcoming a new baby.
There were a lot of things I didn’t expect about motherhood, but the most shocking thing was grief.
One of the hardest things I have experienced as a mom was my daughter’s colic, which started around the time of lockdown when we could no longer call on our support network for help or a break.
I’ve never wanted to be the center of attention and found the spotlight harsh and anxiety-inducing, but motherhood has made me brave in ways I never expected.