My Convertible Life

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Guest Post: Supporting Postpartum Moms

When Junius was born, it rocked my world -- and not always in a good way. I vividly remember sitting in the rocking chair of my room, sobbing while I held my newborn son because I thought my life might never be okay again. I don't know that I officially had postpartum depression, but I know that I couldn't have made it through that time without a lot of help and support. 


That's why I'm happy to welcome Suzanne from pretty*swell with today's guest post. Suzanne is sharing her story on behalf of Postpartum Education and Support, the umbrella organization of Moms Supporting Moms. PES is hosting its first-ever StrollerThon fundraiser on Oct. 2 at Bond Park in Cary. In addition to the three-mile walk, there will be Tot Trot races, inflatable games, face-painting and fun for the whole family. All are welcome – strollers not required! 


Now, in her own words, here's Suzanne...
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When I opened the door to my first Moms Supporting Moms meeting, I wanted to turn on my heel and walk right back out.

I was terrified. And embarrassed. Even though every single woman in that room had been in my shoes.

So I sucked in a deep breath, let go of the handle and sat down. As each person in the circle took a turn introducing herself and sharing her story, relief began to wash over me. I remember thinking: These women are describing exactly how I feel. I’m not alone.

I’m not crazy.

I can’t tell you how validating (and supremely comforting) it was to recognize that I was not the only person on the planet struggling with postpartum depression. That I had nothing to be ashamed of. And, most importantly, that it did not make me a bad mother.

Hopelessness and chronic anxiety, sleeplessness and crying had dominated my frame of mind since my daughter was a few days old. I was terrified to be alone with her, and I dreaded nighttime because I knew it meant that I would not sleep.

Walking to the mailbox was a feat. I did not want to leave my living room.

But when my haven began to feel like a cave swallowing me whole and my fears grew more irrational and the crying did not stop, I decided it was time for help.

I reached out to my family, talked with my next-door neighbor (whose kindness and grace will forever be cemented in my heart), called my doctor and went to Moms Supporting Moms meetings every week.

Quickly, I began to heal.

The women in that group – the new moms like me and the “survivor moms” who facilitated our conversations – helped save me.

If you’re a new mom struggling with postpartum depression or anxiety, please know that you are NOT alone. Ask for the help that you deserve. Check out a Moms Supporting Moms meeting.

And please know that you WILL feel better.

I’m living proof.


*Join us for StrollerThon fundraiser on Oct. 2 at Bond Park in Cary -- good exercise, great fun and an important cause. All are welcome – strollers not required! 

2 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for posting this, Cyndi! I really appreciate your help getting the word out about PPD, Moms Supporting Moms and StrollerThon. You rock!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Beautiful post, and an important story. Thanks for sharing! Enjoy the StrollerThon!

    ReplyDelete

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