Hey New Mamma,
You are so tired. Your heart has never been so full. You just want to cry and hide in bed all day. You have never felt a joy like this before. You have so many emotions mixing together. You want space and yet at the same time you can’t hold your baby close enough. You are trying so hard to bond. You want to feel connected. You feel so distant.
I know what you are feeling, because I was you. I am you. There is nothing that could have prepared me for the days, weeks, and months that followed the birth of my son. Nothing. The highs and lows of emotions are the craziest roller coaster I have ever been on. One minute I would be laughing at the little strange noises my little man was making. The next minute the tears would start. The baby blues are common, but what I was experiencing was something a bit more.
I say that sleep was my biggest problem and for a while I convinced myself it was my only symptom of postpartum depression. Looking back though, the worst part of it all was the distance. I just felt so distant and disconnected with everything. I just didn’t realize it. The exhaustion masked all other feelings. I felt like I was watching the world from afar. I wanted to feel an inseparable bond with my new baby but ‘mommy’ didn’t feel like a role that I fit in. I tried harder and harder not wanting to fail, not wanting my baby to notice that his mom was not really present. I overcompensated by kissing him more, hugging him tighter, singing to him, rocking him. The harder I tried though, the further I was slipping away. I was so scared my baby would think I did not love him.
I want to tell you what I wish I could have told myself. You already have a beautiful bond with that beautiful baby. You are his or her whole world. Your baby loves you and knows that you love him! Give yourself time. Relationships take time to form. But just wait–the first smile, the first giggle, the first hug they give you, the first kiss! 💖 Heart explosion 💖 I promise you feel connected and it will be a bond stronger than you ever imagined. Just wait for the first time your two-year old runs into your arms and plants a kiss on your face. Just wait for the day when you walk into the room and your child see’s you and his or her whole face brightens. Just wait. It will be worth it. You will be ok.
With help, overtime, with support you will feel connected, you will feel less tired, you will be present. Seek the help you deserve. Advocate for yourself until you find the right help. It’s not your fault you feel distant. It is postpartum depression and you will get BETTER!