Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A Long, Long Three Years Ago (Part 1)

This mommy's mind...

...Has not always been this way; this fragile and temperamental. Sure, I've had episodes of deep, dark depression before. And yes, I used to harm myself in high school, but I thought that was normal. And yes, I've had episodes of hypomania (mania light, for the uninitiated), but I thought I was just having periods of great clarity, enthusiasm and creativity. Never mind that I quit more jobs than I can count and have rarely ever finished something I have started. Yes, I've been bipolar for a long time and not known it. But the real trouble didn't begin until a long, long three years ago, right in the middle of my pregnancy. Back when our life was so full of promise and the future so bright we didn't see the dark chasm ahead.
    See, I pretty much lost my marbles right around the six month mark. (And yes, I can say that because they're MY marbles.) I was panicky, on edge, ready to jump at the slightest provocation. I picked fights with The Bearded One constantly, then sobbed hysterically, begging him not to leave me. Not that he had any intentions of doing so. That was just the anxiety talking. And it kept talking, louder and louder, until it was echoing in my head and all I could hear was fear. I don't know how many nights I lay awake in tears because I just knew we were going to be so poor that we would be evicted and our baby would have to sleep in a shoe box under a tree. I remember several nights of getting out of bed at midnight or later to balance the check book, just so I could rest slightly easier. And TBO would get up with me and wait patiently while I crunched numbers at 2am. One late night I heard a car door and an engine start and I just knew, in my gut, that someone was stealing our car. I ran to the window just in time to see our neighbor leaving for work. Which she had done every night since we moved in. But I stood at that window for an hour just to be sure the car was safe. And some of you may be thinking, "Well that's just normal pregnancy hormones talking," and it seems my OB's office would agree with you. But I assure you, as I did them, that something was wrong, that the fear I felt was crippling. But I was told, "You're fine. It's normal," and I didn't push the issue. That was mistake number one: not listening to my gut. I knew pregnancy anxiety was a real thing and could lead to postpartum, but I kept my mouth closed and waited...


  1. im so sorry you had to deal with that. the worse part is no one taking you seriously.

  2. Thanks, Shanen. It really is the worst part. It makes you feel even more like you're losing your mind.