A Final Farewell to Postpartum Depression

Today I took off my last bandages from my surgery and breathed both a sigh of relief and of saddness. This decision took me a few months to finalize and knowing that I am forever done holding a newborn of my own was not an easy pill to swallow. I have heard so many opinions over the years as to why this decision should not be made or taken lightly, but the alternative was far more frightening to me.

Postpartum depression is something I never thought I would struggle with (having never dealt with depression prior to my childbearing years). The thoughts that consumed my mind bring me to tears and the possibility of ever going through it again was too hard to bear for me. 

I am a year away from my thirties and have had three healthy pregnancies and babies. From a medical prespective I am an ideal candidate to give birth to healthy babies due to never having any complications. And as much as this makes me happy, I also feel guilty that unlike myself I have so many friends struggling with infertility, loss of an infant, or miscarriages. My hope is that although my season of childbearing is over I can now have the time, energy, and emotional capacity to better come alongside my friends (old and new) to love on them and pray for them in ways I was unable to before. 

I know at this point what some of you may be thinking: Why didn't your husband just get a vasechtomy? We tried. He wasn't a candidate. End of story. 

In fact my husband came home from going on a walk with our youngest the other day and told me how he was getting teary-eyed thinking about the fact that this is our last biological child together. It was a reminder to soak up the good and the bad, the sleepless nights and the endless teething, becuase one day our kids will be out and about on a skateboard rather than begging to be sitting on our laps. 

This decision was really a decision to put an end to my postpartum depression. I have been off meds for a few months now and besides the emotional changes I go through when the seasons change, (See post Here) I've been feeling great. I am not going to be naive and say depression cannot ever effect me again in the future, but I am more hopeful. In the years to come I hope that we can bring the joy of life into our house again in the form of adoption or foster care, but for now I am thankful for the three little boys God has entrusted us with. My three tiny marks are now a reminder on my body of the remarkable gift of life and how each child brought me down a road that brought me to where I am today and has helped shape me into who I am today. 

If you are struggling with any form of depression and anxiety know you don't have to get your tubes removed like I did. I am not saying this is for everyone, it was a decision for me. But know that you do not have to go through your journey alone.

Ask for help. Find a friend who can listen to you. Go outside. Practice self-care. What you are going through is harder to overcome when you are alone. Message me if you want to talk.

Thanks for letting me open up and be vulnerbable with this decision I made. It may or may not seem like a big deal to anyone else, but for me it marked a closing of one door and an opening of many others. 

Farewell Postpartum depression, you sucked!

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 Instead of a “push present” I got a “sterilization present.” 

Instead of a “push present” I got a “sterilization present.” 

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baby on a plane, a summary.

You wake up early and pack every snack you own into the diaper bag. Pack plastic bags for the messy diaper you know is going to happen on the flight and jump in the car. Your car ride is full of screams because you booked your trip to be a little after naptime because you dont want to be that mom on the plane with the crying child. You get to the airport and the Southwest lady wants to see proof of age for your child who clearly is under 1 years old and you search through all of the snacks for a immunization record or something for proof that your diaper-wearing, babbling, and non-walking child is not a toddler. You go cheap on the flight and choose to have a lap baby and need to put their car seat under with baggage but forget to tell your husband to get a palstic bag to protect the car seat with. $15 later Southwest helps you out and gives you a nice big blue cheap cover to ensure the "safety" of the car seat. 

You're doing good on time and you feel like you got this in the bag. Here comes security checks. You smile at the lady who puts her germ-infested hands all over your babies sippy cup  top and then hollers for you to "move along lady, there is a line here". You listen and hurry up  with your baby in tow in the carrier to get checked for possible bomb powder on your hands. Now it is time to get all of your carry-ons and infected sippy cup all the while trying to help your husband from getting his brand new laptop smashed by on-coming luggages. 

The end is in sight. You see your gate and head on over and do a quick diaper change.You would go to the bathroom yourself but it's almost impossible to pee with a baby strapped to your chest. Good thing you get to go with family boarding because you checked in way too late and are in C class. Your baby is getting wrestless due to it being way past naptime, but you planned this all out perfectly so don't fret. Family boarding is a breeze minus the two families who purposefully cut you off because they clearly coudln't see or hear you in line before them. You let it pass because as a fellow parent you kow you are all just trying to survive at this point. 

Your baby gets a cold perfectly in time to meet family which sucks but on the upside you get a whole row to just you and your family. Thank you runny nose. Thank goodness for the carrier also because baby is just starting to fall asleep. Good thing you planned out the nap this way. Captain is on the loud speaker now and boy is it loud. His 9am coffee must be kicking in. You figure you are in the clear because your baby should sleep for the entire 45 min quick trip up north.

Here comes the stewardess who kindly tells you that you need to unstrap your baby from your carrier for departure. Wait! You mean the baby you just go to sleep for the flight? Yes, that baby. It obviously makes perfect sense and safer to unstrap the baby from your carrier so that in case of turbulence your baby while now have literally no way of being restrained and safe. Too bad they make flights so expensive or you could have had baby in their car seat on the flight. 

Thankfully, your baby doesn't wake up despite the unnecessary carrier needing to be removed. All is well and you are soon to nana's house. Oh wait, you hear sceaming. This is a loud scream but it's not your baby. Nope, it is another mom who's two year old wants something. The screaming does not stop. And now there are more than 5 babies screaming. Good thing your baby is exhausted and passed out. But the anxiety of a screaming baby fills up inside of you. Why didn't you pack lollipops? If only you brought the older boys bag with you then you would have had a lollipop to give the mom who won't give her child the snack they are begging for. Why can't that mom just give her child the snack? Think of all of us who's hears are figuartively and literally popping. Too late now, your baby is awake. Thankfully, the screaming helped the time pass and soon you are landing. Time to wake up your husband who had a nice nap on the flight, good thing he can sleep through anything. 

Thank you for choosing Southwest and welcome to Sacramento!

(jokes aside, we had a great trip up north to see family. My mom kindly kept the older two boys for us so the trip went smoother than normal but gosh travelling takes a whole lot of patience.)

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Dry Spells.

For quite a few months I have not written or shared much on motherhood and as a result there has been a dry spell here on the blog. The problem is that I have not had much to say. I am at a point in motherhood where I am trying to figure a lot out. Whenever I think " I got it" in regards to child-rearing my kids throw me a curve-ball and change in some way. I suppose it will be like this for a while since my kids are always changing and are each growing in their own individual ways.

Many days I am at a loss as to what to do and how to best raise my boys. Despite all the books, blogs, and advice I receive I still I feel like I am a referee, chef, house cleaner, doctor, coach, teacher, disciplinarian, and babysitter all at one time. Each boy has their own needs and whether it be a meal, a sickness, or a change in clothing size my days are starting to blur together. The OCD/ schedule-lover likes the monotonous life I live where I can to some degree expect what each day will look like. I am a control freak (and will be the first to admit that) at times and being able to decide what we do each day keeps my nerves at ease. At the same time, I sometimes stare outside or look on Instagram and long to have some spontaneity in my life. I wonder what it would be like to throw our normal routine out the window and just drive somewhere because we can. The struggle is real and as much as I try not to fantasize what my life could be life it is so easy to wonder what it could be like if I was more of a free spirit. I  am content with life right now (and have much to be thankful for) but at the same time I am up for a change in our day to day routine.

There is a quote from the show The Crown (a series on Netflix) where Queen Elizabeth II states " That's the thing about unhappiness. All it takes is for something worse to come along and you realize it  was happiness afterall. " After dealing with PPD for the second time I now know what it is to be happy. I have had days that were very low and now I can embrace and love the days that are no longer filled with the worries, fear, and anxiety that can come with postpartum depression. 2017 was full of change. Change and me don't mesh well. But I can see how God has used all of the change in our lives this past year to cause me to trust more in Him and to see more clearly how my ways are not my own. 

If you would like to share a little bit about your journey through motherhood, a birth story, reflection, book review, and/or want a space to share what is going on in your life please contact me @ ginazdavis@gmail.com and submit a post. This space has been very instrumental for my own life and I hope it can be a place for you to have a voice too. Thank you so much for listening to my ramblings and for sticking around. 

***If you did not know already, there is a private mom Facebook group for the blog called Baby Blue Mom Group. This group of moms are some of the most encouraging, kind, and loving women I know. If you would like to join please find us.

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 December was filled with sickness at our house. 

December was filled with sickness at our house. 

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