Happy New Year everyone!
Well, it has been a long while. Today is actually my third Blogiversary. I've been thinking a while about how to explain my absence. I know I could just say I've been busy and leave it at that but I think the truth is worth talking about.
I have always been something of a worrier. After each of my first two babies, I suffered from heightened anxiety. Not badly enough to need medication... but close. I was pleasantly surprised that after my third baby was born last January I didn't really experience the same degree of postpartum anxiety that I had experienced before. The transition to having a third baby in the house went much smoother than I has expected. We were very lucky to have lots of help from family and friends and a baby who was a good eater and sleeper.
As the months went on, I found myself becoming increasingly tired. I felt like I was angry with the kids all the time and never had enough time in the day to get everything done. I felt like my life was a constant juggling act where I kept dropping the balls. It was always little things like forgetting to fill out a permission slip for my son's field trip, or getting to the check out at the grocery store and realizing I didn't have my wallet, or getting horrifically behind on the laundry but I felt increasingly frustrated with my inability to keep it together.
My father-in-law had planned to move in with us in September. He is wonderful with the kids and I knew if I could just hang on until then, everything would get so much easier. And I made it. And everything did get easier. But I soon realized that I didn't feel any better. In fact, I felt more unhappy then ever.
At that point, I fell apart. I started to question every decision I had ever made, especially the choice to have kids. I started to panic that I would feel unhappy and resentful for the rest of my life. I felt selfish, pathetic and exhausted. For the first time since I started knitting three years ago, I couldn't bring myself to pick up the needles. Instead of feeling the familiar anxiety that I had learned to live with, all I felt was hopelessness.
I knew it was time to get medical help. With counselling, medication, time and the love and support of my family, I now feel so much stronger than I have in years. I realize now that postpartum depression comes in many forms and this is the story of mine. This has been a hard time for all of us but I know we have come out a stronger and more cohesive family for it.
I am truly blessed to have a beautiful healthy family. I am thankful for them every day. I am so happy to be able to truly feel and appreciate the joy they bring to my life. And for the first time in a long time, I feel worthy of being my kids' mum. I feel ready to help them discover who they are and forge their own paths in this world.
I don't know if blogging will be a regular thing for me again or not. Many things in my life are still a work in progress - including my knitting! What I do know is that that the future looks bright. I am no longer fearful of what tomorrow has in store, in fact, I look forward to it.
I hope that 2014 brings you health and happiness.