Friday, September 11, 2009

I walk the line

For me, it's always so hard to tell where normal ends and too much begins.

Because so much of my life is on the slightly too much side.

So I saw one of the OBs this morning to talk about it. Because I was pretty sure that all the crying and struggling were on the other side of normal.

And she was in agreement.

I'd been wondering if it's just hormones and stress and sleep deprivation or the beginning of postpartum depression. So I made an appointment thinking that if I got on a more even keel, I'd cancel.

But with one thing after the other, I had to be honest that I was not getting evener-keeler.

Because don't you think that things like these can only be signs?

1. You cry over spilled milk.


The spilling, it throws you into a fit of hysterical sobbing. And although you are able to pause briefly to see the humor in this, it only makes you cry harder.

And while you are crying, and trying to assure your crying baby that breakfast is honestly on the way, you start thinking things like "Bird in the hand, two in the bush. A stitch in time saves nine. And what the fuck does that really mean anyway?..."

This makes you feel even crazier.

2. The DC DMV seems like a relaxing little break.

You had to go so that you could change your address and thus have the correct zone parking to park on your own street. You dreaded and postponed until it got to the point where you simply could not put it off any longer.

And so your mom hangs out with your baby while you go. And you stand in the line that stretches out the door, and you explain what you need and show your documents, and you take your number.

And then suddenly, as you're sitting there in this big old building in Southwest, crammed in with the rest of the driver's-license-needing hoi polloi, you catch yourself thinking the following:

"This really is a nice, quiet, organized place they have here."

3. Once you're out! alone!, you never want to go home.

Because on the way to the DMV, you realize the following: You have $40 in your wallet. You have two credit cards. You have your passport, in case they need another form of ID.

And you are not that far from the airport.

It takes every last shred of your self-control to return from aforementioned errand.

I put this all lightly, but the truth is, it's not. I've been crying and resenting - both the kid and Nick - and just wanting to LEAVE. And then feeling so guilty, because I have husband I used to really enjoy and I have this gorgeous, lovely baby.

And I kept having these fantasies of just walking away.

But I believe this will all get better with a little help. And better living through chemicals, you know? So please keep us in your kind thoughts. We're all trying.

Hugs to all, and happy weekend.


  1. I don't have a baby so I can't speak from experience, but I DO know that, based on your blog, you are a strong and amazing woman.

    Hang in there :-)

  2. You're awesome. And a little chemical assistance never hurt anyone. :)

    We love you!

  3. Sending you lots of virtual hugs. Postpartum hormones are a bitch, and I'm so glad you got help.

  4. I have to say that I really admire your honesty here. Sometimes its hard to discuss to things that seem a little "different" or "difficult" for most people to understand. You and your fam are in my thoughts.

  5. Better living through chemicals indeed. Also, you have a whole network of people who love you and don't think this is at all irrational, but just a reality you speak of so honestly. XOXO

  6. Hugs, hugs, and more hugs. And congratulations on being self-aware enough to go to the doctor and talk about what you need. And applause, for coming back from the DMV.

    And, Hugs.

  7. Honestly, I'm more shocked when women DON'T feel that way. You're on top of it, you're self aware, and you're incredibly strong. Your odds are better than good, woman. You'll be just fine.

  8. You are taking the right first step by recognizing what's going on and making it to the doctor to get some help. It has been one hell of a year for you, in so many ways, so i hope you find some peace and happiness through all the haze and crappiness. Your hubby and baby know you love them, and they'll be there with you through good and bad. Just take care of yourself and don't be afraid to take some time out for you. It can only help your son and your relationship for you to have the time and ability to return to your normal charming fabulous self.

    best to you. We're all rooting for you!

  9. I'm with Alisa... maybe a little more "me" time would reduce your flight risk tendency. You sound perfectly rational to me.

  10. P.S. - Any of those new mommies who look down on you for needing meds or help or anything like that, or who say it's all sunshine and roses out the @ss when a baby is born, are all on crack. Being a new mom is REALLY HARD. So don't you dare feel bad, just go get the help you need and revel in the fact that there is so much support for you out there.

  11. You're much braver and stronger than me. I suffered silently because I wasn't strong enough or sure enough in myself to get some help. Bravo! Better days are coming for you and your boys. Hugs :)

  12. sending lots of love and happy thoughts

  13. Thinking of you. - Carrie

  14. Hang in there Lisa. Bravo to you for recognizing that you need help (chemical or otherwise) and actually taking the steps to get it! Sending lots of positive thoughts your way.

  15. One of my sisters suffers terribly from depression. Reading your blog post today was like having a conversation with her the week before she started on her meds 4 years ago.

    She's a brilliant, gorgeous, strong woman like you who, also like you, was strong enough to admit she needed some help.

    You're in my thoughts. Things will get better. *hug*

  16. Lisa,
    I did worry last week, when you had so many comment that everything you were feeling was normal. I know it is normal, really it is. But something in your tone made me think you should talk to your OB. But you had just gone to see one of them and I figured you may have brought it up and been assured you were fine. Good on ya that you made & kept this appointment. I hope you get the help you need. If not? Call up that Dooce chick. She has the skinny and a very very good doctor! I had this same problem with my first born. Not as heavy and it eventually smoothed out. But I had it long enough to have empathy and to know it is very real. I'll be rooting for you Lisa, keep going for help until something works.
    Love from the prairie,

  17. Hugs to YOU. It is so so soooo hard. Those first couple of months are a meatgrinder. Hang on. It will get better. Especially now that you've taken such a big step.

  18. Aww Sweetie! It will get better. Then they start High School and it's a different kind of crazy.

    BTW: Mini Red and I could always help out with babysitting. :->

  19. I was right there with you with my daughter. It's funny. My bro/sil just had their second. He was asking me about breastfeeding (I only did it for a week with my daughter because I was just too crazy. I thought "What if I had to leave? Who would feed the baby?") I realize now that was PPD.

    I told my bro that I wouldn't even try if I had another because I would be calling the doc to jack up my anti-depressant the minute the kid shot out of me.

    Hang in there!! You're doing great. It sucks. It's tough if you have PPD. But you'll get through it and just wait until the fog clears and you look at that little boy. Amazing.


  20. Thinking lots of good positive stuff and sending it your way. Everything will be ok. Promise.

  21. like everyone said, the fact you were able to seek help means you're a lot closer to normal then you think you still have a grasp on normal to know that its slipping away. Good on you mama! And Better living through chemicals indeed! and if you ever need anyone to hold the baby while you have a temporary escape i'm more than happy to pinch those cheeks. I'm sure most of us are :)

  22. I so admire you for speaking up and getting the help you deserve. You are in my thoughts.

  23. I was afraid to tell anyone how I was feeling because there was this crazy thought that they'd take my baby away. And because I tend to put a quasi-cheery spin on things, Chris didn't get how serious I was about being completely insane.

    It really does get better. And it is SO worth it.

    Much love from all of us.

  24. Lisa - I'll be thinking of you, Nick and little one. Take care of eachother and big hug to you.

  25. Transitions are hard, no matter how welcome they may be. Hang in there! You are amazing and wonderful...=-)

  26. Lisa, you are so tremendously strong for even admitting that you feel this way, and even more amazing for talking to someone about it.

    So many women think that if they ignore these impulses that they will go away, but they sometimes don't. Many women are taught that they are awful people for feeling the way you do, but you aren't.

    Just remember that you are doing everything you can, and by doing what's best for you, you are doing what's best for you, Nick and the baby (who is ridiculously cute, BTW!).

    Much love and hugs from Dallas!

  27. you're so awesome Lisa - way to know what you need - it's the right thing for you and the men in your life :) I totally recommend pulling out some of Dooce's archives - she wrote incredibly honestly about ppd and I know it's always good to know there are other people who can relate! big hugs!!!

  28. Oh, Lisa. I'm glad you know yourself well enough to know that you needed help. It's a very good sign. Thinking the kindest of thoughts...

  29. I think that's one of the ways we relate the most, the tendency toward "too much-ness." I also think we're both hyper-aware of our feelings, which is neither good nor bad really, it just is.

    Help is good. Get whatever help you need. Ask me for anything, anytime.

  30. You've done the right thing and I'm so glad for it. Those moments where you wish you could just disappear will come and go and as long as you are able to identify them for the temporary state they are, you're going to be fine.

    Hugs to you.

  31. Glad you saw your OB Lisa - that was a good thing to do. The post partum stuff can be dreadful and there is help for it. You're an amazing and strong woman. Things will be so much better soon. And oh what a beautiful sweet wise litte face in the picture you posted. heart hugs!

  32. I so remember talking to you right before you left... and telling you to be watchful. And you are... you are doing all the right things. It's OK. It's harder than anyone can imagine. And even though millions and millions of other women have been through it before, YOU haven't. So don't compare yourself, don't measure against anyone. It's your battle-- i mean journey. But it feels like a f'ing battle. It will get better. Getting from here to there... that's a bitch.

    And as much as my beloved tried to understand, they really just don't. Men. And sweet Betty... my mother honestly just didn't remember the awfulness of it all. She said, "I don't remember it being this hard..." Yeah... thanks for that.

    You will prevail. You love him. And eventually, your own self will come back through the fog that you're living in now.

    And we'll go shoe shopping.
    Much love, MMS

  33. Good for you for knowing yourself and knowing when to ask for help, chemical or otherwise. I hope there are brighter days ahead for all of you!

  34. so good to hear from you! time will make all of this so much easier.

  35. Anothermother9/13/2009 9:11 PM

    I hope that you are feeling better. My boy is almost 3 months old (he is my second) and I promise you that it will get easier. In a few weeks, he will be smiling at you, and it will make everything worthwhile.

    My advice -- if you don't have one, get a miracle blanket or other swaddling blanket that really keeps their arms at their sides. For my kids, it has been the secret to getting 7+ hours of uninterrupted sleep by about 8 weeks.

  36. i can ONLY imagine how tough all of this is. i've been stressed but from everything i've heard having a baby, more so bringing a baby home is one of the most stressful times in anyone's life. it's something you CAN'T possibly prepare for!
    i hope the help helps... and i hope you feel back to yourself soon!


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