Coming Clean.

This is not easy for me to write.

Sometime during the last couple of months I’ve sunk lower and lower. Into what, I don’t exactly know; I guess myself? The reason itself is lost on me, and I cannot pinpoint a specific moment that sent me spiraling into a world that I didn’t really know as my own.

I stopped running. I stopped working out in my home. I stopped answering phone calls, texts, emails, messages. Recently I went silent on Twitter and Facebook, simply because I felt like I had nothing to say.

In a lot of ways, I stopped caring in general.

I admit that our daughter would have toast for lunch because I just didn’t feel like making anything substantial for her. In turn, I would feeling an overwhelming and intense guilt over this that would consume me for the rest of the afternoon. Until of course, dinner, which was a joke. It would be something equally as disgraceful, except this time my husband would be subject to my neglect. I barely did anything around the house; folding laundry only when the pile on the washer and dryer became too embarrassing. Dishes weren’t touched until absolutely necessary, and my poor husband was making a lot of dinners he shouldn’t have had too. I felt completely worthless around the house, a realization that would cause breakdowns numerous times throughout the day. I walked around in a complete fog, overridden with a general sense of sadness that I couldn’t seem to shake. I know a lot of people can ‘fake it’ until they feel better, but I couldn’t even muster  fake smile. Somehow I was still able to maintain a supply and keep my infant nourished; how I managed that I’ll never know.

Going to runs that our run group hosted was out of the question. Though my absence was either because of unruly children or my husband’s work schedule, I was secretly happy that I at least had excuses. Who needed a downer like me around anyway.

Sure, there were times of happiness, don’t get me wrong. Unfortunately, I then let myself get the best of me and before I knew it I was back in my slump. I switched my blog over to private, as I was convinced no one wanted to read my crap of a blog, and also because I couldn’t figure out how to delete it. I got rid of running clothes, sick of seeing them unused, and finally donated shoes I no longer needed. I even stated that I was no longer a runner, and though I was quick to dismiss my old hobby, I also didn’t find a new one. I didn’t care too. Furthering my guilt, I found myself also quick to anger. Granted, my temper is pretty quick anyway, but I was snapping at my daughter for putting her shoes on the wrong feet or for taking her ponytail out.

As quickly and unpredictable as my “this” started, I recently have finally started to see a light at the end of the tunnel, but only after a series of events I could not control. I met these events with resistance, initially not wanting anything to do with them. My daughter started preschool. I then was planning her birthday party. My parents also came into town [huge, huge, huge blessing]. Finally, I opened up to a close friend about how I was feeling, and saying all of this aloud felt overwhelming, in a good way, and it took everything in my power to not break down in front of her. Which leaves me at present day. Reflecting on the past week, the answer to me is clear.

Keep busy. Keep running.

These two things are crucial. While I have been told numerous times that carving time out of my day to do something for me is important, I can attest to it now. Being ‘me’ should absolutely be a priority, ranking right up there with feeding my kids and keeping the house maintained. Which, I’m happy to report, is back to normal. Our son will be four months old tomorrow, our daughter is turning three later this month. They deserve a happy mom. Not a shadow of a mother, moping around the house, unfazed by the chaos that she created.

Was/Is this post partum depression? I honestly do not know. Was I willing to go see a doctor? In my ‘sad’ moments, absolutely not. Looking back, I should have. If this series of events hadn’t have happened, I do not know if by now I would have come to terms with things. So why with the blog post? Two reasons, both equally important. Not only will this keep me accountable, but also because I know I’m not alone.

So here’s to being happy, or at least trying not to stumble on the path to it.

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Coming Clean.

11 thoughts on “Coming Clean.

  1. I’m sorry you felt this way:( Sounds like post partum to me, and I am glad you are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. It is so important to take care of you and keep blogging, it will help:) Sending prayers your way:) You are so brave and strong to write this post.

  2. Andi Dornelas says:

    I want to start off my affirming that – yes, you are not alone. I have been there and I’m sure many other moms have been. Once in a funk, it may be hard to get out, but somehow we do. You are strong…and don’t ever feel bad to ask for help. I’m here to talk. I get ya. xoxoxo Love ya. Andi

  3. Oh, man, I definitely went through some phases like that when L was an infant. I’m so sorry! Glad you’re able to identify it now and talk about it… I hope you continue to feel better. Keep us posted!

  4. Chris says:

    So much love and respect for you, Natalie. I hope you found writing this confessional post healing, too. Here’s to hoping you clear the fog and soar ever higher. ♥

  5. I am so sorry you’ve been going through a rough time and I am sure there are several more people who’ve walked in your shoes trying to manage a household and family and still find time for themselves. You’re right about taking time for yourself-that is so important! I was afraid something was wrong when I couldn’t read your recent posts. I should have sent you an email to check on you. Sorry for not being a better friend!

  6. Yikes, I guess it’s a good thing that I decided to not send you hate mail about not updating your gif blog 🙂

    I’m glad you’re feeling better and I’m sorry you had to go through this!

  7. Your are so brave to put your feelings out there. I couldn’t possibly diagnose you, but let me say that there is definitely nothing wrong with asking a professional for help to figure out if you do indeed have ppd and need some help. I went undiagnosed for 8 months. Things became managable and eventlually better after asking for help. If it is ppd there are many treatment options to explore. Check out http://www.postpartumprogress.com. too. I will be thinking of you a lot. Hugs.

  8. Nicole mnh1970 says:

    Just read the blog today. Sorry you were going through a rough time. Glad to hear you’re coming through it. I think keep running, keep busy will help. Especially the running. It keeps me sane through the stressful “mom” times. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

  9. I was kind of wondering if something was wrong… I hope you feel better getting this out in the open. We all go through rough times; sometimes they’re harder to explain than others. I go through these periods myself, and my rule of thumb is that I let myself feel sad/mad/depressed/whatever for a little while and then I pick myself up again. I’ve had to go through this cycle a lot since my grandpa passed away this summer, even to the point where I thought I’d need to see a doc again. But I keep this in mind: “Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens.” Psalm 68:19

    Love, Elizabeth

  10. big big hugs. I’ve been there (go in and out even recently). It’s the farthest thing from where one ever wants to be. If you feel it happening again, I’m here. Email me. You need to know and remember (and be reminded) that you are not alone. It is so, so hard. I’d recommend talking to a doctor or therapist NOW when you’re not in the depths. Don’t wait. Be proactive. I really wish I had been. All that said, I am SO glad you are reemerging 🙂

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