Maternal Mental Health Disorders, they take the color out of life.
For several years, I suffered quietly through the pain and stigma of postpartum depression and anxiety. I knew there was something “wrong with me” but I was afraid to voice my thoughts. The overwhelming anxiety had convinced me that if I shared my concerns with anyone, my kids would be taken away. The horrifying darkness of depression told me my children would be better off without me.
I lashed out at my husband, blaming him. I abused myself mentally and physically. The anxiety attacks that wouldn’t let me drive my car without fear, the intrusive thoughts that fed into the lies and shame, the fights, the anger, the shame. I don’t remember much of the good times during those years – just the overwhelming depression and the need to hide it all away. It’s like those years are all shades of gray.
Then a miracle happened: our unplanned, unexpected third pregnancy. Kori might not be the traditional definition of a rainbow baby, but she is my rainbow baby – bringing color and light back into my life. She is my redemption into motherhood. She brought me into a tribe of women who taught me it’s ok to not be ok. Women who have walked this path before me and alongside me – making it smoother for those to come after us. I found my voice and will forever use it to shed light on maternal mental health.
This is my truth. What is yours?