Wednesday, August 22, 2012

PPD and Depression - Glimpses of that place

A bit of a dark post .. if you are looking for a laugh this is not the post to read... xxx
Depression in general and Post Natal Depression in particular is a truly personal and individual condition. I have been asked what PND feels like and I can only give you a glimpse of my own experience. This is by no means a blanket description for all PND


Even now she asks for a hug. Even now I can see it on her face. She is still prepared for a knock back. Prepared for me to run, to hide, to be busy, to be distant.
All the hugs in the past 14 years have not healed that deeply ingrained uncertainty. She is not sure of me.

I cannot change the way it was. I will wish forever that it had been different.


Glimpses of that place:

I'm sitting on the kitchen bench cross legged so you can't touch me.
Little chubby fingers reaching up, huge eyes and an uncertain smile. You know I don't want you near me but you don't know why. You do a little dance and I watch. Inner thoughts urge me to smile. To encourage. To give you a glimmer of softness. But I can't. I cannot make my mouth curve. I can't look you in the eyes.
Your big brother is watching Play School and your baby sister is sleeping. You have me all to yourself and yet...
I'm hiding, head in my hands, whispering "Please go away. Please go away."
It's not your fault little girl.
None of this is your fault.
My heart is rock heavy and I am so deeply numb that I cannot feel anything for you. Nothing. A blank wall.
I know you deserve better.
You are such a good little girl. You try so hard to please me, to reach me. So perfect.
I am a terrible, shitty mother!  How can I be this way.
Looking at you reminds me of how crappy a job I am doing. Reminds me that I don't deserve you. That you don't deserve this. That you would be better off with another Mummy who doesn't feel this way.
And yet you still stand there, little arms raised up.
" I hug Mummy?" you ask.


She says she cannot remember how it was. But her heart remembers. I know it does.


  1. I cannot imagine the pain that must cause you. {{{{{HUGS}}}}

    1. I wish it were different for her, I know we have learnt and grown.
      I still wish it were different.

  2. These words are important. Just before my son was born, my pediatrician said to me "You may see that you become very frustrated with your daughter (she was 4). You'll be tired & so focused on the baby & she'll want to be on you more than ever."

    Of course, at the time, I shrugged it off, like I wasn't going to be like that. Wrong. I WAS like that. She did regress & she DID want to climb all over me & be on me all the time, because her brother was getting that closeness & she was used to being the baby.

    If my pediatrician hadn't given me that frank warning, things would've gone very differently. She was a mom, too. Her kids were each 6 months older than my kids. She spoke of her OWN experience to me that day, so I wouldn't feel alone. She lifted me up with her words when I desperately needed them.

    I also still harbor that guilt & worry if there's a part of my daughter that remembers. If that's why she's so fiercely independent, to a fault sometimes.

    Your words here are going to do the same thing for some other mama who feels alone & like she's failing.

    We weren't failing, or bad moms. We just needed help & understanding. And when we get it, we can help & be understanding for our little ones, too.

    This post is very good. You are a wonderful mama & nurse.

    1. thankyou Eryn.. yes we all fail by degrees. I wish for a "do-over" Luckily she is a loving and forgiving person who tries very hard to see the best in me xxx

  3. I think it is so brave and strong of you to write these words and yes they will no doubt help others feel they are not alone.
    Please dont beat yourself up about the past.Every mum feels she made mistakes or failed in some way and wishes for a do over at some time.
    You did the best you could with how things were.She has grown up to be a loving good girl.You must have done something right hon.
    Every new day is a chance for a new beginning.Bonds can be formed no matter what age.
    Your girl will see what a beautiful example you are as a nurse and a woman and a mum who is trying so hard.You are there for her now.Thats all that counts.
    From one old nurse to a beautiful new one.Big hugs.Debyl1.xx

  4. I remember the moment I realised I had to learn how to hug my child. I always thought Mr14 would hate me for the affection I failed to give him as a small child but he assures me he only remembers the laughter and fun. He even told me while we were homeless, he thought we were on a holiday. It's one of the biggest guilts I carry as a mother, that I failed to provide a stable home for my child, and he think we were on a holiday. Sometimes we need to see it through their eyes to understand our perception of things may not be the same as theirs. You're an amazing mum x

  5. You left a comment for me on my blog today, so I came to read this. And all I can say is that sharing it helps and that people are understanding. I think you are wonderful for sharing this for not only you but for all the other people who aren't ready to say it out loud yet. Our words mean something and they can heal.

    Your comment today lifted my spirits today, and I wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart. It meant so much that you took the time to write it. THANK YOU!


  6. And you're the one who tells me - "you did the best you could" each time I talk of my failures. From the pot to the kettle - you surely did the best you could - and in my humble opinion, have been a wonderful mum to your kids. If you have made any mistakes along the way, join the club! And know that your kids LOVE you from the bottom of their blessed little hearts! They KNOW you would die for them! You, miss mouse, have been the lioness protecting your cubs since they were born - forgive yourself, and enjoy the relationships you are nurturing in them with you now!!!!!

  7. Just sending you hugs. That's all. Just hugs. xxx

  8. This is beautiful Lisa, and has given me insight into the horror that must be PND. I would find it hard to not feel robbed if I'd experienced it. Hopefully mums who are going through it now, reading this will see that you can get through it.

  9. Oh my goodness, I felt your words and understood them. I am so glad that you shared.


Your comments are welcome, please be kind and respectful. We all have different views of the world, sharing your view with gentle words is Lisa