Post natal depression…or not

I think I’ve written before about my episodes of depression. As far as I recall, they started with a bout of ante-natal depression when I was expecting our oldest boy, Handsome. I remember sitting in our flat one evening watching a digital clock on our cable box. It was one minute past eight, so 20:01 on the 24 hour display, which was, coincidentally, the year as well. I remember sitting in absolute unmoving silence for the next fifty eight minutes. As each new minute came round it was as if I was counting off another year of my life. A panicky voice in my head was screaming  over and over “You’ll be a mother in 2001 and you’ve got no experience of it. You’ll still be a mother in 2002 and you’ll be totally crap. You’ll still be a mother in 2003 but by then the social services will probably have…” And on and on. Until the clock ticked round to 21:00 and I was forced to admit to myself that while I would indeed still be a mother in 2100 I probably wouldn’t, at age 121, be in any state to care how I’d messed up my son’s life!

I did my best to hide the depression that followed the birth of our first child. I was convinced that if I admitted to it, my baby would be taken away. It passed eventually, only to recur when I had our second son. When he was about two I sought treatment, and since then I’ve not been so far down since. 
After losing our baby last year, I fully expected lots of depressive episodes whilst I was expecting baby Sweetie. However, this time it has manifested itself differently, as anxiety rather than misery and low self esteem. I’ve been anxious about every possible outcome of every event for the last year or more. Sometimes it is so exhausting. Take today for example. Tomorrow I go for a simple small surgical procedure on my wrist to resolve a problem I’ve had for at least four years. You would have thought I’d be thrilled. Instead, I’ve spent the entire day running through more and more extreme worst case scenarios which started with permanently losing all use of my hand, progressing by later in the day to death. For a carpal tunnel surgery! It’s not rational. I know that the surgeon will have done this procedure countless times before. But the disease is not rational, and I’m struggling a little right now.

Hopefully I’ll be back in a couple of days after a successful operation, feeling calm and centred again.


One Response

  1. Sending you lots of love n hugs xxx

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