I promise you as ludicrous as that title sounds above I actually gained a LOT from having postpartum depression! I swear now, looking back on that time and having some real perspective, I am a better mother having gone through that experience!
If you are just now getting to know me, you can catch up on my story Here and it’s continuation Here where I first blogged my honest truth about my struggle with bringing Linc home and realizing I was struggling with more than just baby blues!
These were scary posts to write and even still, to this day, scary conversations to bring up with friends in conversation. I hate that because there is so much power in sharing your story and so much healing that can happen when we share our hearts and our vulnerabilities with each other like this! We all struggle every day with ups and downs and small heart aches and even big heart aches! We might have similar worries and there is power in connecting with one another… if only we are brave enough to drop down our guards and let one another close to our hearts and our real imperfect lives!
Today I wanted to open up my own heart and share with you something that has been weighing on my heart for the longest time. Something that I have learned and come to recognize over these past few years. Something that might be a bit taboo and sound awkward, especially with a topic that isn’t usually associated with positivity and light! I wanted to share 3 amazing things I gained from struggling with postpartum depression! These 3 things have actually helped shape me into the mother that I am today and without having gone through that experience, as tough as it was, I never would have been able to appreciate some of the things that I do now!
Big experiences often have a way of molding us and changing us forever! They make a lasting imprint on our heart and without that experience, without that struggle, I wouldn’t be on the same path I am now. I am grateful for that experience! Here is what I learned:
- To Have A Voice: Having postpartum depression opened me up to a place where I no longer felt fear about my experiences. I was able to finally gain courage and have a true voice with bravery to share my history and personal story! In doing so, I have found that not only was I so very much not alone; but that soo many women I speak to on a daily basis also SHARE my story! This sparks such meaningful conversations and connections that lead to friendships and heartfelt relationships. I also learned (and this is so important) that my voice counts for so much when it comes to my son and my family! There is no fear when it comes to choosing your words and standing up for your family!
- A Sense of Freedom: It allowed me the opportunity and the acceptance to say to myself I am flawed! I am going to make mistakes as a mother and that when I do, I will become an even BETTER mother for the growth that will come! It allowed me to see that my son and my husband too will love me even more for those flaws! Real is Better Than Perfect and I will choose to show my son that perfect is boring, perfect is not achievable nor is it even desirable! As long as we give our best and all of ourselves every day that is the best anyone can ask for!
- Grace and Compassion: No one should ever pass judgement on another mother! We will never understand the choices each of us has to make for our own families! All of us are unique! Our children are unique, our families are unique, and our situations are unique. The one thing that will always be the same is the bond that unites us: the unconditional and unexplainable feeling, title and breathe of motherhood! There is a lot of “mother-judging” that has been going around for far too long! We are the ONLY ones that can ever understand each other from the day we start “trying” to become mothers until the day we cease to breathe! We never stop being mothers, not a single one of us, no matter our situation or circumstance! So why is it that we feel the need to bully, judge and cut our eyes at one another? There is already so much judgement in the world from every other possible angle, our children included in that! We need to band together and give each other as much grace, compassion and support as we can muster because we are the only tribe we have that can fully understand the struggles we go through from day 1 to final days! Grace and compassion is what we all desperately NEED from one another! Postpartum depression taught me that in the biggest way in that I was ashamed to share how much I was struggling. I was ashamed because I was afraid of judgement yet the biggest craving I had was support from other mothers. It’s a desperate cycle because all you want is to hide in fear and lock yourself away from the people that you absolutely need the most love and support from! If we all could just show more grace and compassion, I wonder what we could heal!
Motherhood is the most amazing, beautiful, crazy, exhausting, and breathtaking experience in the entire world! At the end of the day… if you truly think about it’s the one thing in the world that can potentially connect us all!
This is just my story and I share it freely in hopes that maybe someone out there might be able to connect or know someone who could benefit from hearing something similar to their own story! We are all unique and thats what makes us all so valuable! If we can drop our insecurities and share more stories and share our hearts, we can do so much for each other just by relating and connecting!
If you have any questions or any comments leave them below, or if you would like to send something more personal you can connect with me through e mail firstname.lastname@example.org