Postpartum depression…it’s a real thing

Postpartum depression…it’s a real thing

“Postpartum depression…it’s a real thing…and it isn’t easy to talk about.
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When my first daughter was born she went straight to the NICU. I didn’t see her, hold her, bond with her, nothing for the first 48hrs…And when I finally did see her…I didn’t want to hold her…I did it because I knew I should…
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Weeks went by where I would hold this tiny baby in my arms, nurse her, care for her, and love her. But not because I “wanted” to do it, I did it and “felt” it because I knew I should.
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I remember looking down at into her sweet eyes thinking “who are you?”. I knew I loved her, I was her mother and it was my job to, but the feeling was missing…
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She would cry and my immediate feeling was one of irritation rather than concern, when I held her…I felt nothing…I felt a shadow of an emotion I knew I “should” feel…but didn’t
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It took me months to build a relationship, to get to know the little human I created, to fall in love with her, and to ultimately come out on the other side of postpartum depression as a mother who loves her children fiercely…But it came at a price.
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I carry around a cloud of guilt every single day. There are hours, days, weeks even, that I missed. There are baby snuggles, late night feeds, and countless moments in between that I missed. There is a bond I should have built, that I didn’t. There were too many times my baby just needed to be held by me, and I wasn’t there. I missed all of these things …because I didn’t care…I couldn’t care… and for that reason I will feel guilty for the rest of my life. And let me tell you… the weight of that, it’s heavy….
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Postpartum depression. I didn’t know I had it. My daughter won’t remember. But I always will. And while my second pregnancy and postpartum experience were completely different, beautiful in fact, they also remind me of what I missed the first time around…
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I don’t know if that guilt will ever go away. I work hard every single day to overcome it…
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I share this because I know I’m not alone. This was hard to say out loud. But to the mama who knows this struggle I want you to know—I see you, I feel you, I AM YOU❤️”

Instagram: @brittney_harding

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