I have dealt with anxiety and bipolar depression basically my whole life, but I didn’t find out what it was until I was 25. With my first son, I was depressed almost the entire pregnancy. My husband wasn’t supportive at all–he would belittle me and make me feel like I was crazy. He was also abusive. My son was born nervous, and I blamed myself. I felt guilty for bringing him into my crazy life. I tried to work through the negative feelings on my own, but I just couldn’t. There were so many days where I felt alone and hopeless. I would just hold my son and cry. I would think I wasn’t a good mom or that my son deserved a better mom, but his smile reminded me that I could do this. Although life in an abusive marriage is difficult, I still found a way to find my peace. I would walk with my son strapped to my chest in his comfy carrier, go to the park, and sit on the swing with him. I would sing to him until he fell asleep, and I would walk back home feeling calmer. I also had a best friend that was very supportive, which helped a lot. I honestly feel like my anxiety and depression would have been easier to handle if my spouse at the time had been more understanding.
In 2019, I found out I was pregnant. I was excited, but also very nervous because I was still dealing with depression and anxiety. I was high-risk and almost lost my baby due to a blood clot. I thought to myself “maybe God doesn’t want me to have this baby.” My anxiety was so high I thought I was having a heart attack once. The support of my best friend was crucial during my pregnancy, as well as the reassurance that I am a great mother. There are days where I still feel like a bad mom and just sit on my bed crying, but things are better. I am in therapy and on a mood stabilizer, which has changed my life for the better. A more stable, loving relationship with a new partner has also helped immensely.
Don’t fear medication ladies…it’s a game changer! With medication, I don’t feel as overwhelmed. I can take on the day. I still have bad days (everyone does), but that doesn’t mean only dark days are ahead. Having a good support system is so important, and things get better. My son is thriving, and I love my support system. Even my relationship with my parents is so much better now that I’m in a better place mentally. Find your groove, whether it is exercising or doing arts and crafts. I took up resin jewelry, and it has helped a lot because it requires a lot of patience–just like life requires patience. Be patient with yourself. Be kind to yourself, and above all, love yourself.