Guest Post: Post-Partum Depression and the Day I Almost Took My Life

Today our guest blogger is someone I personally know and have known for years.  I consider her a great friend and I look up to her and her willingness to be real with us as she shares the struggle she had with Post-Partum Depression.

 

My name is April. I am a Mother to four amazing little boys. I’ve been married to my sweetheart for twelve years.

Looking from the outside in you’d probably never guess that three and a half years ago I almost took my own life.
It feels strange talking about the day I almost took my own life and the mindset I was in during that horrible time in my life. It feels like a lifetime ago.

It feels like I’m talking about someone else and it also makes me feel extremely guilty.

It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that I almost took my own life. But three and a half years ago I was extremely ill. You see depression, and post-partum depression isn’t a choice. It’s a sickness. You can’t decide you want to be happy and instantly feel better.

You see depression, and post-partum depression isn’t a choice. It’s a sickness. You can’t decide you want to be happy and instantly feel better.

MY STORY

I felt the dark cloud forming over my head on the drive home from the hospital the day after my sweet baby was born.

Each day that cloud got a little heavier and a little darker until the darkness felt suffocating.

I felt completely dead inside.

My depression made me feel literally ill. My head felt cloudy and I couldn’t think clearly, I was extremely forgetful. My joints ached, especially my wrists and fingers.

Over time I was so depressed I became suicidal.

Sometimes I would stand in front of my medicine cabinet and think about how many pills it would take to make me go to sleep and never wake up.

I’d literally fantasize over ways I could take my life.

I was truly sick.

THAT DAY

The day I almost lost my battle to PPD is a day I doubt I will ever forget.

The full details are over on my blog but the condensed version is that I went for a drive down a quiet dirt road, I noticed my husband had accidentally left his gun in my car, right as I was going to pick up the gun God intervened.

That day was the lowest point of my life.

My rock bottom.

But that was the turning point for me. It was my wake up call. Soon

Soon after, I went to the doctor, began taking an anti depressant, educated myself on post-partum depression and began being proactive at taking care of my mental health and getting better.

MY ADVICE

If I could share some thoughts and advice from my experience it would be this…
-PPD is not a choice, it is an illness.
-it does not mean you love your baby any less or that you aren’t a good mom.
-we do not talk about and educate women enough on the signs and symptoms of PPD.
-PPD is different than baby blues.
-we as women shouldn’t be afraid or ashamed to talk about PPD.

If you think you might be suffering from post-partum depression please talk to someone.

I would start by making an appointment with your doctor.

Reach out to a friend or loved one.

You can always reach out to me. You can find out how to get a hold of me on my blog.

KEEPING DEPRESSION AWAY

Things that helped my depression and keep my depression at bay today….

Exercise
Natural light

Taking an anti-depressant
Nature
Sunshine
Prayer.

Now that I am on the other side of PPD I have gained so much perspective.

I grew so much spiritually and emotionally through my battle and healing.

There really is meaning in all things.
I look at my life now, my sweet, beautiful children, my amazing husband, and it makes me sick to think I almost lost this all.

Depression is a very real thing.

I’m so grateful I am still here.
The statistics for the number of women who are suffering from post-partum depression are staggering.

We’ve got to start educating women on the signs and symptoms of PPD.

It should be more than a little paper that is sent home with you from the hospital in a giant packet of paperwork.
I hope my story helps those who are struggling with depression. You are not alone. There is hope and help available.

 

 

Visit APRIL RISES for more information and tips on post-partum depression.

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