Guest Post: Haley’s Story

I will now be featuring Guest Posts on The Lorix Chronicles, starting with this courageous story from my good friend Mimi.

It started as a lie. A lie to myself, a lie to my midwife, a lie to my husband. I wanted to tell the truth but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. I didn’t want to be looked at differently; I didn’t want to be a monster that people talked about when I wasn’t present. It wasn’t my fault, I didn’t ask for this. I just wanted to feel normal and be happy again.

I was excited when I learned I was pregnant. I wasn’t always sure I wanted to have a baby, but when I found out the news, I couldn’t wait to tell everyone. My pregnancy didn’t go the way I had hoped. I puked at least 3 times a day and couldn’t stand to even be in the same room as certain foods. My highly sensitive nose was putting me over the edge. I was laid off from my job at 25 weeks pregnant and had already been in the hospital with a miscarriage scare. The scares continued with each growing week and I was being carefully observed. With each scare, the need for the baby inside me grew more intense. More

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My Experience with PPD: Intrusive Thoughts

(One of my goals with this blog is to explain what my experience has been with Postpartum Depression.  This post is about intrusive thoughts. If you have high anxiety or tend to ruminate or obsess, you may want to stop reading.  Some of the thoughts are frightening and are described in some detail.)

I knew I had Postpartum Depression (PPD) after Milo was born, but I felt like it was manageable. I didn’t think I needed a support group,therapy or medication.  And then, four months postpartum, I had a panic attack and began to have intrusive thoughts

Intrusive thoughts are unpleasant and unwanted thoughts and images. They can interfere with one’s ability to continue their normal activities. They are not hallucinations. People who have hallucinations, sometimes experienced with Postpartum Psychosis, tend to feel that their thoughts are rational and may feel the need to act on them. People who have intrusive thoughts do not want to act on them. The thoughts can cause fear, anxiety and guilt. 

My intrusive thoughts were visual, like a video playing in my mind that I couldn’t turn off. The fear in me was visceral, as if someone had their grip on my intestines while at the same time pressing all the air out of my lungs. More

Not a Happy Camper

This past July, my husband Stewart and I went camping with our three-year old daughter Beatrix and then four-month old son Milo. We had planned the trip before Milo was born, figuring four months was just old enough to be out of the delicate newborn stage and just young enough that he wouldn’t be crawling and getting into anything. When Milo was born, I experienced postpartum depression and anxiety (commonly referred to as PPD). I had PPD with Beatrix, so I was looking for the symptoms when my son was born. Before I even left the hospital with him the nurse had me answer a questionnaire which put me at high risk for a perinatal mood disorder.

Very shortly after giving birth I began feeling anxious, depressed and angry. I had trouble bonding with my son and questioned why I ever became a mother, let alone for a second time! I gathered hope from the fact that I had gone through this before and had come out the other side stronger and better educated about PPD. Four months later, though I did have some frustrating days, I felt like I was handling things well enough to take the trip.

I was nervous about camping, but still excited. We were going to Wilderness State Park, a campground in the northern tip of Michigan’s lower peninsula – the same place where I camped when I was younger. I had great plans for us. More

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