Anxiety

Waking up in the middle of the night,

Feeling an all too familiar feeling.

I’m gasping for air

But i’m not taking any in.

I try to steady myself.

Just focus on my breath.

Inhale.

Exhale.

Inhale.

It’s not working,

I’m suffocating.

Why does this keep happening?

Why do I feel so vulnerable and exposed?

I feel as though the world is judging me

And I’m consumed with insecurities.

I think I am a good person,

My intentions are pure.

But I suffer from a case of word vomit

Where I can’t help but be honest.

My truth is my truth,

Perhaps that is my downfall.

I speak from the heart,

I vocalize my thoughts,

I seek understanding and guidance

With a little dose of support.

Why do I feel so disappointed in myself?

Why do I feel so frustrated?

Why do I feel as though I’m letting people down?

I feel as though I’m living in a glass box at the edge of a cliff.

One wrong step,

I fall and everything shatters.

My failures are front and center for everyone to see.

If only I could catch my breath then everything would be okay.

Inhale.

Exhale.

Inhale.

It’s not working.

I’m suffocating.

I’m in a state of panic.

I want this feeling to go away.

I want to go back to feeling like myself again.

Who have I become as a person?

I don’t recognize this person.

I used to be so confident and reassured.

But this person,

She’s different.

This person dissects her every action.

Criticizes her every thought.

She creates insecurities where there should be none.

I try to steady myself.

Just focus on my breath.

Inhale.

Exhale.

Inhale.

It’s starting to work.

I can see that these insecurities aren’t real,

Just made up scenarios in my mind.

My mind is playing tricks on me,

And I can’t let it win.

I think I am a good person,

My intentions are pure.

But I suffer from a case of word vomit

Where I can’t help but be honest.

My truth is my truth,

And there is nothing wrong with that.

I want to learn and grow as a person,

But I can only do that if I’m myself.

I can’t do that by masking myself form the world,

I can’t do that being someone else.

I need to be confident in myself,

And not allow my mind to control me.

The mind is a dangerous thing,

When it acts like your enemy.

Anxiety.

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Looks Can Be Deceiving

I look so happy in this picture, but looks can be deceiving. No one knew it at the time, but I was battling a mental battle I never imagined I would be fighting.

This morning in particular, I woke up and had a panic attack. I followed that up with a very tearful shower. I was petrified to go to this party. It was the first banquet hall party I was going to with my 4 month old son.

The music would be loud and I didn’t know how I would be able to disguise having a mental breakdown.

Sure enough, right before we joined in a wedding dance known as the ‘jago’, my son started to cry uncontrollably, and I had a mental breakdown. I was dressed to the nines and my bangles were bothering him. I couldn’t hold him in a comfortable position. I pulled off my bangles, which were too small. You see, my hands had grown while I was pregnant and I didn’t realize until the day of the event. So I forced the bangles on, and when it came time to peel them off, it hurt. But I didn’t care! I wanted to console my son.

The next morning I woke up and my hands were so swollen and bruised that I had to alternate between an ice pack and heating pad all day.

But you would never know about my mental struggle by looking at this picture.

Why Can’t I Breathe?

For the first 3 months postpartum, every morning when I opened my eyes I was consumed by fear and sadness. I was scared that I would have to go through another entirely new day full of the unexpected. Would my son cry a lot today? Would he feed okay? Would he want to be held for most of the day? There were too many unknowns and I had no idea what to expect. It was unfamiliar territory and it made me feel very vulnerable. Waking up in the morning was a challenge, and I hated it. I would wake up and have a panic attack. And if I am completely transparent, I wasn’t a single mom, I had a lot of support, but there was something in my head that kept telling me I wasn’t good enough. That I was somehow going to mess this all up. That my son would need something, and I wouldn’t be able to figure out how to help him. I just wanted him to be okay, and because of this, I put a lot of pressure on myself to be perfect. I felt I had to be perfect, so that he would happy.

I became a very anxious person. I never understood the power anxiety could have over a person until I experienced it myself, and boy was it an awful feeling.

But when he turned 3 months, its like something changed in our relationship. Its like we started to connect. Perhaps it’s because I started to speak to people about my struggle. But for the first time, I felt like I was actually starting to bond with my son. When we locked eyes, I felt like I could take care of him.

Make no mistake, I was still very very far from feeling confident in my parenting skills, but I was starting to build a support system to help me through some of my concerns.

I also stopped Googling for “help”. Whenever I wanted to understand a behavior my son’s exuded,  or a solution to help him with a struggle like gas, I would Google. I found that Google left me confused and it stressed me out. There were so many solutions, I became overwhelmed. So, with the guidance of a doctor, I decided to stop.    

Best. Decision. Ever.

When I started to slowly trust my own instincts and to reach out to people I knew, instead of a comment wall, I started to feel more confident in my own skills. If a solution didn’t work, I could reach out to the people who initially guided me and say “hey that didn’t work, got another idea?”. The open dialogue helped me work through my anxiety.

I still suffer from anxiety today – but I feel like I have the tools to work through it, and with time, I hope that I can overcome it.

My Girl Squad

When people think of a group of girls, they often associate them with “cat fights”, “being bitchy” or the movie “mean girls”. But when I hit my lowest point, I found myself being uplifted by some truly exceptional women. The more I opened up about my negative self-reflection, the more determined these women became to rally around me to provide me with the support I didn’t realize I needed.

It was a strange feeling.

When it comes to my emotions, I have a history of being more introverted. I don’t really engage in friendships and I like to keep my circle very small. I have acquaintances, but not friends. Yes there is a difference.

But in this instance, I knew I needed help. I had to expand outside my regular circle. If people reached out to me and asked me how I was doing, I told them the truth. I told them I was struggling. Those who didn’t want to support me brushed over the topic, and those who wanted to help constantly checked in on me. I was okay with either. If you didn’t want to help me, I appreciated the indirect honesty. But, if you did, god bless you, you have no idea how much solace I found in our conversations.

I appreciated the advice and I appreciated the support. I truly felt like they were my pillars when I couldn’t stand on my own. I also appreciated the people who were around me who didn’t necessarily have the life experiences to guide me, but were around to just be around. To step in when I felt like I was going to have a mental breakdown. To fill in the gaps where I felt I was weak.

My girl squad was and has been my greatest blessing throughout this experience. I started to understand the importance of expanding my circle and investing my time and energy in relationships that I may have otherwise overlooked.

PostPartum Depression – Yes I did the Ugly Kim Kardashian Cry?

Sitting in the doctor’s office, I felt nervous. I started to think, why did the CAS lady think I had postpartum depression? I did a quick google search, “symptoms of postpartum depression”.

  1. Depressed mood (subjective or observed); be irritable mood in children and adolescents, most of the day; YES – My husband would agree that I wasn’t a pleasure to be around.
  2. Loss of interest or pleasure, most of the day – YES – I was sad for about 75% of the day.
  3. Change in weight or appetite. – YES – I had lost weight, I just had a baby. But other than that I was eating okay.
  4. Insomnia or hypersomnia; – YES – Oh I definitely had hypersomnia. I wanted to sleep every chance I got. Some would argue that this was a side effect of being a new mom. But I didn’t feel physically exhausted. I felt mentally exhausted all of the time.
  5. Psychomotor retardation or agitation (observed); NO?- I wasn’t sure what this point meant, someone else would need to confirm this one for me
  6. Loss of energy or fatigue; – YES – I was very tired.
  7. Worthlessness or guilt; – YES – I had a really bad case of mom guilt. I didn’t get to feed my child, I didn’t want to hold him for too long after he was born.
  8. Impaired concentration or indecisiveness; – YES – I could not make a decision. Normally, I have a very decisive person. I made decisions very quickly. But lately, I would get overwhelmed and confused very quickly.
  9. Recurrent thoughts of death or suicidal ideation or attempt. – NO – I didn’t have these thoughts, but I did want to run away and hide under a mountain of blankets.

I was surprised at how many times I had checked the “yes” box, but I was relieved to learn that I wasn’t alone.

Perhaps having child protective services called was a blessing in disguise?

When the doctor finally made his way into the examination room, I felt a lot more comfortable in speaking with him. I was very candid about how I was feeling, and for the first time, I had a full-on meltdown. Yes I’ll admit it, I did the ugly Kim Kardashian cry.  

I was a mess, and I needed help.

But I have a great doctor. He assured me that having postpartum depression is more common than people think, and that there are so many people who aren’t diagnosed. Contrary to popular belief, you can be diagnosed with postpartum depression up to 3 years after having a baby. Yes, you read that correctly – THREE YEARS!

I was shocked.

Feeling five or more out of symptoms listed above nearly everyday in the same 2-week period is a flag to get help, and boy did I need the help!

My doctor referred me to a psychiatric and social worker – and just like that I was officially in the system.  

Postpartum Depression – Why Isn’t this Dark Cloud Leaving?

After a couple of days in the hospital it was time to come home. I was looking forward to the familiarity of my home. I had just completed a huge renovation project on the house and it finally looked the way I had envisioned when we first bought the house.

But coming home, I still felt empty.

My mum was staying with me for the first five weeks of being home. In our culture, you either go and stay with your parents for five weeks or your mother comes and stays with you. And those first few weeks were amazing.

But then came five weeks plus a day and I was home alone with just the baby. I was scared. I didn’t feel confident taking care of this little human being. I didn’t even feel confident in taking care of myself. I was a mess and I spent the entire day in tears.

In my time of desperation, I remembered that there was a support line I could call for help, and I called. Little did I realize that they wouldn’t care about my well-being, instead their concern was “if I would harm my child”.

Enter Child Protective Services.

Keep in mind that harming my son had never even crossed my mind. I explained to the nurse on the phone that I just wanted to run away. How that translates into harming my child is beyond me. But that evening I had a visitor from child protective services.  I was scared. Are they going to take my child? What did I do wrong? My son was fed. I changed his diapers. And when my husband came home from work he would bathe him. My son was taken care of. That wasn’t the problem. The issue was my mental state. I was sad. I wasn’t confident. I felt lost. I felt very vulnerable. I felt that I could crumble at any minute.

Nevertheless, the lady from Child Protective Services was coming in the evening, and I had to prepare for the unknown. Its safe to the say the visit from Child Protective Services was a success. The lady asked to see where my son slept, and I showed her the bassinet and then the crib that was already set up in the nursery for when he got older. I showed her his toys, his clean clothes and his changing table. She didn’t understand why she was called to my house. I explained my mental state and she advised me to go see my family doctor to discuss post-partum depression.

PS – My mum also started coming to my house during the day to help me. She’s my superhero!

PostPartum Depression – Where Did You Come From?

I never thought I would be one of those moms.

I had a plan. I was going to get pregnant, and it was going to be the flowers and butterflies’ type of experience.

Wrong…

The experience was a nightmare plagued with gestational diabetes and nausea until the very end. Between popping pills to control the vomiting, pricking myself with needles to check my blood sugars and stabbing myself with insulin needles, it was safe to say I hated the world! As the Brits would say – I was a miserable cow!

My labour would go smoothly.

Wrong again…

33 hours of vomiting and pain. Everyone said “take the Epidural – it will be great! It will disguise the pain”. They didn’t tell me that it would make me throw up! Maybe I was one of the unlucky few. Even having ice chips made me throw up. Labour was a rough experience. After it was all over, I was mentally and physically exhausted. When the nurse finally placed my son in my arms, I wanted to be as far away from him as possible. Skin to skin wasn’t even an option. My husband took over. My husband was also the first one to feed my son,  and although I had only been a mother for about 2 hours – I felt like a failure.

Make no mistake. I loved my son, but I felt as though I had lost who I was. And without even realizing it, I started feeling the pressure of the mom shamers. In my mind, I could hear them saying “You didn’t want to hold your kid? You didn’t feed your kid?”. While the normal me would respond with “No I fucking didn’t – move on with your life”, the current me – that I didn’t even recognize, wanted to crawl into a small black hole and hide.    

I was very sad and I felt alone. I felt like no one understood how I felt. I was supposed to be happy and excited about this gift I had receive, and I was. But something was missing. I felt like an empty shell.


January 21, 2019.

Hello Everyone!

I’m back! After a year and a half long hiatus I finally feel ready to write again.

As many of you know, I had a baby in December of 2018 and its safe to say that the experience didn’t go quite as planned. I joined a group of millions of women who battle a mental condition called post-partum depression.

Much of my future blogs will detail my experiences as a mom.  I intend to share my real life experiences and emotions. I refuse to sugarcoat them to make myself look/feel like the perfect mom. I’m a real mom with real experiences. I am looking for guidance on how to get better – so if you have any tips/tricks. THEY ARE WELCOME!

Pregnancy Sucks!

There is a social stigma attached to pregnancy or what it should be like. Women are expected to be happy and bubbly about the miracle that is growing inside them, and grateful for the opportunity to grow a life inside them. I am very grateful that I am able to carry a child. It is the greatest blessing that I could ever ask for, but I could do without the aches and pains that come along with it. Every morning I wake up and feel my fingers and feet feel sore. I press on my hands with all my might and then groan at the thought of having to lift my 150 pound self out of bed. Being 26 pounds heavier than I am used to, it’s an accomplishment to even get out of bed in the morning. I have to mentally prepare myself before I even attempt to move. Eventually, I give up and just roll out of bed.

I hate being pregnant. There I said it, and it feels good to let that off my chest. I don’t enjoy feeling nauseous 24/7, feeling exhausted beyond belief and the constant rib pain that just won’t let up. I am constantly in a state of discomfort.

I am currently 6 months pregnant, so I still have a long ways to go, and I can feel myself being mentally torn down by this process. I don’t know how to regain my strength. It makes me sad to feel mentally weak. I want to be stronger and to feel like myself, but I don’t know what to do. Every day I fight a battle with my body. It wants rest, but I want to actively engage in my life. I don’t want to waste my day resting. I want to feel like my old self. I want to feel in control of my life.

I’m sure I am not the only person who has felt this way about being pregnant, but every mother I talk to seems to have had an amazing pregnancy. I have yet to find someone I can talk to about the struggles of pregnancy, without being judged for it!
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The Pressure of Breastfeeding

I am officially 5 months pregnant and I for the first time in my life I am starting to feel pressure that I haven’t felt before. Breastfeeding! The child isn’t even here yet and I can feel information about the benefits of breastfeeding being thrown at me from every angle. I understand, breastfeeding is important. But it doesn’t come easy to everyone. For some women, they never produce enough milk, does that make them lesser moms? What if I don’t produce enough milk, am I a terrible mom? Every mom wants what is best for their child and if breastfeeding is what is best for their child, what mother wouldn’t want to do it? It comes down to whether they are capable of doing it or not.

Personally, I don’t want to breastfeed. I want to pump and feed. I want to be able to measure how much milk my child is getting. And to be able to quantify that he/she is in fact getting enough milk. Does that make me less of a mom?

I watched the video below earlier today and I couldn’t help but empathize with Whitney Port. You can see the pressure she is putting on herself. The pressure is a result of outside forces. It makes me sad to see that those forces are tearing her down. As women we should be picking each other up not tearing each other down, and I am grateful that she posted this video.


For the most part, I am a very strong person, but the pressure from outside forces is also starting to get to me. I don’t think its fair for me to feel as though I am a lesser person because I don’t want to conform to ‘what is acceptable’ by the masses.

Breastfeeding scares me because I don’t know if I will be able to do it. I have had a tough pregnancy thus far and I don’t expect that breastfeeding will be a walk in the park. My sister-in-law had a very tough time breastfeeding. I remember her returning from the hospital one day in tears because her daughter wasn’t getting enough milk. She thought she was doing everything correctly, but her daughter was starving and my sister in law had no idea. Since that day, I vowed to pump and feed my child. That way I could monitor that he/she was in fact consuming milk and being fed. I can’t imagine how she felt, and I hope I never have to.

Every mothers journey is different, but everyone is trying to do what is best for their child. I just wish mothers could do their best, free of judgment from outside forces.

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