I love hearing about different birth stories, and I feel like as women we love talking about our personal experiences. Whenever my girls and I get on the topic we are each engrossed in the details even though we’ve told each other a million times it never gets old. My first son, Kai his birth was everything I DIDN’T want! Going into my first pregnancy and being a control freak, I took the same approach. I laugh now, you should have seen my literal 5 page birth plan written out. I planned on controlling the whole birth, I was due December 6th convinced myself I would have a Thanksgiving baby, you know all those things that you can do to induce labor one has to work. 3 days passed my due date, Kai didn’t come until the 9th, I tried it ALL, what a joke! My plan, no drugs, labor in a tub, skin to skin all that stuff. My doctor said you can run the show unless I think you or baby are in danger I am taking over. After about 22 hours of labor and stuck at 5cm, it was clear I wasn’t budging past 5. That’s the only part I ever really talked about in the beginning, I went 22hours without drugs, I was proud of that and a failure at the rest I thought. The tub was the only thing that worked out in my favor. My doctor finally said we need to try the epidural and see if that will help you dilate. After the epidural was in a nurse checked me and said I was at 7cm, YAY moving forward. My doctor came in to check me and said no, your still only at 5, then came an emergency c-section. The second he said I needed a c-section I broke down and balled my eyes out. I cried and cried. A healthy baby was born and thats all that should have mattered, my husband was overjoyed so in love, and I was so drugged up and mad at myself, at my body for not being able to deliver naturally, I couldn’t enjoy my baby boy. It was nothing like the movies like I anticipated.
I read about postpartum, I’m a happy positive person, didn’t think it could happen to me. I even encapsulated my placenta because I heard it can help ward it off. I swallowed those pills daily, no magic pill there! Maybe they do work for some though, don’t knock it until you try it lol! Yum! The recovery for me was easy, I was up and walking, just had trouble if I was laying down. Physically I was healing well, emotionally I wasn’t there. It was instant after he was born that I just spiraled into sadness, it wasn’t gradual. The first night home with him, he was cluster feeding which I knew nothing about and became so overwhelmed. I told my husband I couldn’t do this, I shouldn’t of had a baby, and I even told him I wanted to give the baby up for adoption. I scared the living crap out of him, he didn’t know what to think, but he said to me we would call an adoption agency in the morning. Did I really mean all those things I said? Absolutely not, but in the moment with hormones raging and plummeting, Its how i felt. The next day and after we never spoke about my adoption comment, now we kinda joke about it, because he agreed just to appease me. I took very good care of my son, the mother instinct, but that was the extent of it. I always told my husband how I was feeling, the good and the bad. We often think postpartum only means your gonna hurt yourself or your baby, thats a big misconception.
I didn’t want visitors, my mom said she remembers me in the corner of the couch with a blank stare constantly. My brother stationed in Germany only saw him on Skype with my mom, I couldn’t call him or anyone. We got newborn pictures done, there are so many of my husband with Kai, there is only 1 of me with him. I knew I needed help when I started to hate my husband, I was miserable and in denial. My husband and I have always been so close but I was pulling away and I couldn’t stand him, that was a huge red flag for me. I dialed the number to my doctor many times knowing I needed help, but I never followed thru for months, ashamed and embarrassed. I never once felt suicidal, like I was gonna hurt my baby or anything, I was just numb inside. Nobody really knew, I put up a good front, I was suffering in silence. Finally my husband said we need to go I can’t see you like this, and thank god we did! My doctor was wonderful and we sat in his office and talked for a few hours. My husband was so supportive and helped me every step of the way. I was nursing so we decided to try a few things before medication, more fresh air, exercise, and I went to talk to somebody. My therapist helped me the most, mostly just letting me cry and she got me to understand the c-section wasn’t a failure on my end. I wish I had gone sooner, because a handful of sessions and I felt so much better. It took me about 6-8 months, and one day I realized I was back to myself and so thankful I was feeling better.
So I guess this turned into more about postpartum than a birth story, but hopefully it will lighten the negative stigma surrounded with PPD. Those hormones are out of our control and we shouldn’t be made to feel like it’s bad thing to need help to work through all those changes! This was my raw unfiltered experience with PPD. This one was a little sad, Kash Julian birth story up next, game changer.
I encourage anyone who may think they are suffering to reach out for help, you will feel so much better, and know it does get better!