Friday, 28 January 2011

Time to face the facts

I have depression. I have not recovered. I cannot leave the horror of the months after Ella was born behind because the blackness is still there. I wish I could, I wish I could tell the story of my recovery. I have been trying to tell it for over a year now. But it is not true, no matter how many people I tell or how much I try to ignore the reality.

Don't get me wrong. I have been better, the drugs have made life so good, almost too good. Because I have let myself believe I am fine and I have not taken responsibility for my own mental health. I have popped my pills and carried on doing all the things which create the stress which has led to me feeling this way again. It is not my fault but the facts are the facts whether I want to accept them or not and I feel that I have no choice but to accept them. And accepting I have depression, have had it for a long time before Ella arrived and will probably need to manage it for the rest of my life, is a harder pill to swallow than a couple of SSRIs.

I have got to this point because my attempt to change medication didn't work. The new meds didn't suit me and over the summer I have slowly spiraled down. Growing anxiety, the typical stress of the Christmas season, starting back at work and putting Ella back into daycare have stretched me and the drugs just didn't cut it. So now I am transitioning back to my old meds and through the haze of that change the blackness and horrible thoughts have come back. And so I have to acknowledge that it is still there. Changing meds can make you feel awful and a lot more unwell than you really are. But it has also highlighted that I need to take better care of myself.

I had already started trying to do that but it was all external - trying to do more exercise, eat better, see an osteopath for my back. But for me that has just created stress and pressure through appointments I have to get to and the challenge of finding time to exercise. It wasn't about caring for me it was about doing what I 'should' and achievement. Now I am trying to go deeper. I must do less and say no. I am learning to be honest with myself about what I really want to do rather than what I think I 'should' do. For me that is so hard. I always want to do everything and even that is not enough. I am starting therapy. I had avoided it cause I just wanted to take a pill and forget about it. I didn't want to have to go any deeper. But now I need to and want to. I am sick of not feeling in touch with myself, not knowing my own mind and feeling lost in what I think others want or expect of me. I want to face up to the things which scare me.

Today I am at home resting. And it is hard. I have tidied the house, picked tomatoes, put the washing on. I feel that I 'should' be resting. I don't know what I want to do. Where did I lose me? I want someone to tell me what to do. To tell me how to get better in three easy steps. But instead I have to be with myself and work it out myself. I know that will be the hardest thing but is the only way to have some peace back in my life.

I want to go to bed and read and sleep but here I am writing. It is good to get it out but it is not resting and I want to rest. So here I go...


  1. You're an exceptional woman, Marion... Bless you. xx

  2. Hi Marion,

    I'm lucky enough to have never experience depression, post-natal or otherwise, but from what I've heard from others it sounds... well, unimaginable I guess. But admitting that you have it is a huge step and I admire your courage for doing so.

    My sister-in-law suffered post-natal depression after the birth of both her daughters (now 8 and 5) and has come through it - it does and will happen. She is a wonderful person (like you) and I'm sure she would be more than willing to talk to you if you need some support from someone who has been there.

    I'm not sure there's anything I can say to help, except hang in there, and I think you are doing an awesome job of that.


    Renee x

  3. Anonymous11:09 pm

    Wow Marion. It's so interesting reading what you have written because I feel it expresses so much of what I have felt at times in raising my first daughter. It is hard in our society with our lack of community.

    I have recently been changing my language to exclude the 'shoulds' and 'have tos' - I am learning to say what I want to do and how I feel about something - basically owning what I say. It has really changed my focus, created less blame and takes away from me playing the role of a 'victim'. It gives me the power back to be me.

    I now have another daughter and the transition from 1 to 2 was not as hard as I thought it would be. In fact the second little girl has been a dream. Due to personality a bit but also because I was more relaxed second time around.

    I am sure God will continue to lead you. It's an interesting journey we are all on. One you wouldn't want to do without God's help! :)

  4. Marion4:19 pm

    Thank you all so much for your support and sharing your experiences with me. I am amazed and humbled by the love and care I am receiving and how even when there seems no hope or no way that things can change, they do.