Guest mom: Local group helps mom heal from postpartum depression
When she opened the door to her first Moms Supporting Moms meeting, Suzanne wanted to walk right back out. Then she started to heal. Learn more about the group and its upcoming Strollerthon fundraiser.Posted — Updated
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.
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