Pregnancy is difficult. It's chronically categorized as this deeply beautiful moment of our lives in which we are a vessel of life. Though, as the person I am, I can't help but highlight other parts. In hopes fewer people will feel alone in their experiences.
Post partum depression is very, very real. It's incredibly difficult to navigate life after baby is born when you're brain is unable to comprehend the rapid hormonal transition back into an empty vessel. Our bodies are unimaginably complex, and when something goes awry on top of that complexity, it can be terrifying. Because we only get one body, and we need it for...well, everything.
Samyie reached out to me in 2014 to take these images for her. Back then, she wasn't sure what the experience of pregnancy would do to her. Only after, when it is too late to prepare, did she experience postpartum depression for the first time. Below, she educates us about what it is like to have postpartum and how you can get help. As she says; you are not alone.
What do you wish someone would have told you before you had your first?
I wish someone would have told me there is not a right way or wrong way to do things. Then there is the Mom guilt, the expectation to be The Best Mom. I wish someone would have told me it's okay to be yourself AND be a mom. So basically, don't be so hard on yourself.
What do you wish others knew about your postpartum struggles?
Well, I wish I knew I wasn't alone! It is such a scary feeling. It's like guilt, regret, depression, anger, and every negative emotion bottled into one awful moment. There was days I thought killing myself was the answer because I felt like I wasn't enough. I couldn't process why I was not more caring and loving. Every time I breastfed; I cried. I was to scared to tell anyone cause my first thought was they will take my kids away because they think I am crazy. When in reality; I was just trying to fight through my hormones and understand this feeling. And it can hit at any Mom, at anytime.
What can you tell other Mothers going through postpartum depression right now?
It's okay to feel this way. No one will take your kids away. Talking can help! I tried like hell to not take any medication. In my head it made me a "bad mom" or a "weak mom". But in the end it helped me a lot and made me a better Mom. It got me talking more, and realizing how big of an issue this truly is. It still comes in waves but knowing there is a community of people out there to help is amazing.
If you're struggling with postpartum depression, or think you may be; reach out to your loved ones. If you don't feel safe asking for help; call your insurance company for a list of therapists who CAN help you. Getting help for your depression is natural and very common and much healthier than trying to cope alone. If you don't have insurance, try searching Facebook for postpartum support group like this one.