Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Baby Blues?

I'm having a really hard time lately.

My maternity leave is winding to a close. I have to go back to work on November 9th and although most people keep telling me "Oh you still have like 4 weeks left?" I'm feeling like "Holy shit, I only have four weeks left?"

I cry every day.

Every. Single. Day.

For the first month and a half of my maternity leave, I was a cleaning machine. The house was clean, the laundry and dishes done, and I was enjoying my time with Hunter. Yeah, don't get me wrong--I was tired--but I was happy. Crazily enough, I had a newborn at home and yet my house was turning out to be the cleanest it had been in a long time!

I was in a great mood most of the time, enjoying my baby so much and yes, I had my normal new Mommy meltdown moments, but otherwise I felt GOOD. I was getting to know Hunter and I LOVED. EVERY. MINUTE.

Now, I'm feeling like the sands of the hourglass are running out so rapidly and I'm absolutely devastated that I have to go back to work full time.

I feel like I can't leave my child, especially now when he is getting to be so active and vocal. I feel like now, as he is learning so much, is when he needs me the most. I was enjoying my days so much, we seemed to have a good routine going and I love watch how much my child learns every day. I sing to him, talk to him, repeat back his cooing noises. I read to him and show him his bright rattles and toys. When he is napping, I actually felt happy to be doing laundry and making our home a clean and happy place.

Why am I bitching? I'm so lucky! My Mom is going to be taking care of Hunter here at our house. I won't have to worry about the cost of daycare, and I know he'll be getting the greatest of care from his Nana. So while I appreciate that, I feel JEALOUS of my mother. Jealous that I won't be with my Hunter baby all day and teaching him and spending quality time, kissing his cute cheeks.

Also, I'm worried about breast feeding. Like I said before, my work schedule sucks. I don't get home till almost 6:30PM. And no matter what anyone tells me, I'm feeling SO stressed, worrying about not being able to get in enough BF sessions to keep my milk flowing (I am hoping to have enough time to breast feed twice in the morning and twice at night, but with Hunter's routine and my work schedule, I'm not so sure it will work) and I worry endlessly that my milk will dry up.

The thought of having to STOP nursing Hunter right now upsets me beyond words. Not only just for the benefit to him, but to me. I never could have comprehended, before doing it, how close I can feel to my child. If I choose to stop breast feeding Hunter becuz that's what I wanted, thet's one thing, but if I'm "forced" to stop becuz of my shitty work schedule and inability to nurse/produce? SAD just doesn't sum up my feelings on it.

I have no energy,no motivation, anymore.

I just sit on the couch moping and watching tv. Staring at Hunter and feeling the tears well up as I visualize not being here for him.

The dishes are piling up, the laundry is overflowing, I can barely make the bed. I have no desire to read anymore (and I am a TOTAL bookworm...reading is something I always make time for becuz I enjoy it so much).

I'm also so very unhappy with my body and my weight (even though I've lost almost 30 lbs of pregnancy weight) but yet I still continue to eat like crap. I either eat too much or I don't eat at all and I know that's horrible and not healthy especially, while breastfeeding my baby boy.

I know I should probably call the doctor. I don't really know what he'll do for me. I don't 100% want to be back on anti-depressants (I've taken them in the past) yet I wonder if that's what I need.

Am I just having the normal sadness that goes along with going back to work full time, and feeling like I'm "leaving" my child? How do I stop myself from feeling like a horrible mother? I was keeping a lot of this in, and crying when I was alone, not wanting people to think I was selfish for feeling like that. But I've started to share it with Daryl, with my Mom, and two of my friends who are Mom's. I bawled my eyes out to Daryl the other night and finally let it all out. He and I have talked and he has said he'd be fine with me working part time, that we'd make some sacrifices financially, but that it would be worth it both for my sanity and for our family. But of course, I can't seem to motivate myself to DO anything about it.

I'm just a crying, emotional mess.


Morgan said...

April, I am so sorry you are having to feel this way. I know your heart must hurt so much. I know anti-depressants aren't the best answer but they really truely worked for me. I can tell you are depressed by reading this post and you really need to go to your doctor. My doctor told me that babies can ~really~ pick up on these feelings from the mother, and that's not good either.
I know exactly how you feel about having to leave them, but when you are at work and you start missing him just tell yourself you are working to privide for him so he can have the best of everything..and that alone makes you a wonderful mommy April. As nice as it would be, mothers can't be with their children everyday. Even though it's 5 years from now, Hunter will have to start school and you wont be able to be with him then. Life is hard sometimes and it sucks. I just want you to know I am here for you, I'm thinking about you..and if you ~ever~ need anyone to talk to mail me on FB..I've been through this depression phase and it is by far the worst thing I've been through. Love ya A! :)

Anonymous said...

Oh, April! I am so sorry to read that you are having such a difficult time. While I am sure that a lot of what you are feeling comes from the uncertainly to so many things related to you going back to work, I also think that there could be some postpartum depression on top of it. I am proud of you for sharing your feelings with Daryl and with your Mom - and while that is huge, you also need to share them with your doctor. He or she may have some alternative suggestions beyond medication. I hope that you are able to reach a solution (be it medication, counseling, a different job, etc.), and that it comes quickly for you. You are doing a great job with Hunter!

Robyn said...

It is hard gearing up to go back to work. I had a lot of the same feelings and still have some of them to this day. I does get easier sort of. Are you able to pump at work? I know we have to be afforded the chance to pump if we want. That way you can keep the supply up and still be able to breastfeed at night and on your days off.

RC - Rambling Along... said...

I remember how sad I was to go back to work, too, but as others have said, I think you need to talk to your doctor as you seem to be more into the baby blues phase - PPD.

That being said, give yourself a break when it comes to breastfeeding and don't let it make you this crazy. I'm speaking from my experience, since I let it make me crazy, and I have watched other friends let it make them crazy. Just do the best you can, as the best thing for him isn't that you breastfeed, it is that you remain healthy and happy, and close to him! And pumping does take a lot of work. I had to really commit to doing it several times a day at work, to keep things flowing. (And I took some of the supplements known to help lactation.)

My mom is with my son, too, on the days I'm at work. As much as I miss him, I'm at the point now that I LOVE the close relationship he is developing with his grandma. I was blessed to have a similar relationship with my mom's parents, and that multi-generational involvement is such a wonderful thing.

Okay, enough lecturing. Just know that so many of us are sending you virtual hugs because we have been in your position.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if it's major depression. To me it sounds just like the sadness of having to go back to a job you didn't enjoy to begin with (and maybe the lack of being on top of cleaning and laundry is just sadness and fatigue catching up to you). And yes, 4 weeks isn't that long. The first 6 weeks flew by for me, and I was going to the hospital every day to see the girls. If it can fly by in those crappy circumstances, I can only imagine how quickly it goes by when you're having fun! But you know your norm, so only you can say whether it's major depression.

As for the breastfeeding/pumping, I think that it won't drop off as much as you think it will, since you've already established a good supply for Hunter. And you will probably get more than you think pumping at work, since he's not draining you for mid-day feedings. But try (I know it's easier said than done) to NOT stress about that. I always felt harassed by the lactation consultants in the NICU, that I wasn't doing enough to get milk for the girls. They were talking to me about taking drugs to get my supply up before they were even discharged, when I was making enough to feed them both. On top of all the stress I had already been through, worrying about my supply did nothing to HELP my supply. And if your supply drops off, then you just supplement with formula. You can still get that closeness by breastfeeding him as much as you can, and if he needs a bit of formula, then that's okay.

Big D said...

You Can do it Honey, Hunter and I will help you! You are loved just know that. I would love to tell you to quit but you know that can't happen with us "LIVING THE DREAM" But I can say I love you...Thinking of you today

Sarah R said...

April, if you guys can make it work part-time, I would definitely look into it. I, too, had to go back to work and it was so hard! I cried the first week back. I had no problems pumping and getting a ton of milk (more than I needed, actually). I just hope everything works out for you--maybe you and Daryl can come up with another solution for the work thing.

Lovely Lalo-Cha said...

Awe, sorry to hear you are having such a hard time. It is always hard to leave the little ones. Hang in there and call your doctor, see what they have to say. I hope your tears dry up real soon.

CanadianMama said...

Oh April - I'm SO sorry! I had the baby blues too. It was so tough. It hit me immediately and was almost gone by 4 months. I've heard of lots of women that get it by it later.

You are a really smart woman April and you have good intuition. You know in your heart what is best. If you feel you need medication then go get it. If you feel like you just need more support then ask for it. You are such an amazing person - you have lots of support, it's ok to be selfish about it now - really it is!

I wish I could do more to help you. I REALLY do! My only answer is for you to move to Canada. I know it's incredibly far fetched but it's a possibility. The economy is good and you get a year mat leave here LOL!

Email me if you need to! I'd also be more than happy to call you - send me your phone number if you want a chat!

Big Hugs!!

bekah said...

Im so sorry April, I wish I knew what to say. I am worried that in a few months this will be me too.

I think you should call your doctor, honestly. I dont know if this is the case for you, but in the past for me, anti-depressants (even a small dose) have been the only thing that have helped me get up off the couch and do something about the problems that weigh me down. Its like that little nudge that I need...if that makes sense.

With work - maybe you would be able to just cut your work week by like 10 hours? $ makes life so dang complicated!

~**Dawn**~ said...

I'm not a mommy so I won't pretend to understand. Therefore all I can offer are some (((HUGS))).

Julie said...

I completely understand!! My situation is different, but I felt that way too. You are totally normal! Believe me making sacrifices to be with your baby is when you wanna go shopping, but if your like'd spend money on Hunter before yourself anyway....I'm just an email away....

Easier said than done, but try not to think about it....enjoy your time with him.

maybe you can discuss it with your dr and just weigh your options....

Kat said...

Oh hon, I'm so sorry. It sounds like you have the baby blues. And it is completely understandable to dread going back to work. I don't blame you. All of your feelings are valid. If you can swing it at all, I would go to part time. I think that would solve a lot of your fears.
I'm so glad that you talked to Daryl and others about your feelings. That really does help. It certainly helped me. Just getting it all out.
Just remember that this too shall pass. You won't always feel like this. And if it is taking a while to get rid of these depressed feelings than you definitely need to talk to your doctor. Keep a close eye on it, and use us to vent to anytime.
Prayers for you!

ALF said...

Like everyone, I am so sorry to hear that you're feeling this way. But I think it's great that you're talking about it. I don't have any experience but I, like the others, recommend talking to your doctor so you can get the help you need! Hope you're feeling better soon.

Jen's Farmily said...

I'm so sorry you're feeling that way April!

CanadianMama said...

Hello, April? Where are you? I miss you lots and want you to know that I'm thinking about you. No pressure but I would love to see a blog update to see how you are feeling.

IF you keep this up I'm totally buying a plane ticket to come and visit you - I'll do it April - I will! Then you will have a crazy Canadian house guest to worry about too!

Ok, I'm totlaly joking but I hate that you are feeling this way and that I can't do anything about it! You are a great person and lots of people care about you! You are SO loved - don't forget it!

Jaina said...

First and foremost, ::reallybighugs::

Sorry I'm late in reading this post. Okay..I hate to even suggest it, but April, any chance there is some kind of post partum depression going on right now? I know you don't want to go to the doctor, but it sounds like maybe it would be a good idea.

I know you've talked about pumping that still an option? The lactation specialist and the hospital should be able to help you...from what my mom has said in the past, it can take a bit to get the hang of it, it can be a bit tricky at the beginning.

If Big D is okay with you working part time, maybe you could try it, see if it works. ::hugs:: I really wish there was an easy answer...or a magic wand. Sending loads of love and prayers my friend. You can do this April. You are so strong.