On Coming Back From Postpartum Anxiety
BY DANIELLA RABBANI, HONEST MOTHERHOOD CONTRIBUTOR
It colors my every move. Not just as a mom but as a woman, as a professional, as a wife. Postpartum Anxiety. I didn’t take it seriously at the time, but it’s real.
I look back on conversations I had with friends old and new about sleep training for instance and I must have sounded like a lunatic. I just wanted to get it right. Which is maddening in parenthood. Because there is just no one way. No right way. And when you are being ruled by sweaty palms and racing thoughts due to hormones and sleep deprivation and whatever else... the right way for you is so, so, so slippery to catch.
I don’t know how long it lasted. Well over a year I’m sure. I thought it was that I had a hard time breastfeeding or that I work freelance. The mind will come up with a million reasons - or people - for why it’s in pain. And truly: looking back, yeah. There were elements of my new mom life that weren’t perfect but it all came down to my heart racing a mile a minute.
I was truly afraid of everything. The sun. SIDS. My own dog who I love, Bernardo. The panic called everything into question: my career, my relationships. Everything except Ness. He was the one peace point. Not that there weren’t challenges related to caring for baby Ness, but his presence gave me a reason to find my sanity.
I became relentless about taking care of myself and my marriage (because omg my poor sweet husband who held my hand through this). I read books and absorbed advice from woman with objective opinions. I came back.
It was hard. It was so hard.
And still, I’ll do it again. In September. Because the lessons I’ve learned these past two years of motherhood have expanded my mind and my heart in such a way that I’m braver. I’m more resilient. And I trust myself in a way I never could before.
What has been your mama low? Have you risen from it? How? I’d love to know in the comments below.
Big love to you, you warrior woman.
Daniella Rabbani is a Brooklyn based actress and the honest motherhood contributor to the MU community. Her full time gig is mama to Ness.