I figured it had been a while since I talked about my postpartum recovery and if you’re a regular over here you’ll know the struggles I have been through. It’s hard to believe that it’s a whole seven months since I gave birth to my little boy. On one hand it feels like two minutes ago, but then again I feel like I’ve been a mother all my life.
Body image | My body has come a long way in the last year. When I think about how I looked just twelve months ago, I should be happy with the way I look but somehow I’m not. I’m not ok with this new body of mine. I see all of these inspirational mums out there talking about how proud they are of all the stripes they’ve earned during childbirth and I applaud them for their confidence. But I struggle to find a fraction of that same happiness.
This new body of mine is taking some getting used to. I don’t like the extra skin, the funny marks and the likeness to a bowl of jelly I resemble. But I know in time I will accept it. It will become a badge of honour. Something I wear with pride. And until that day a good pair of Bridget Jones style spanx will do the trick!
PND and me | “You’re a failure. You’re ugly. You’re not worthy of happiness.” These are the thoughts, among many others, that cross my mind every single day. The thoughts that taunt me and give me no reason to bare a smile across my face.
These are thoughts that define me. The thoughts that define me as a mother and that define me as a partner. Some days I let these thoughts control me and other days I’m strong enough to tell them, “no”. But every single day is a struggle.
I used to smile because I wanted to and then I began to smile because I felt like I had to. Like society would never accept me unless I was smiling. I’m learning to love myself. To appreciate the good things about me, little as they are, they are worth celebrating in some way.
This journey has been far from easy, and it’s something that still hangs over me every day, but I am trying hard to overcome my postnatal depression and be a happier person for it. I have to say, I’m not sure I’ll ever fully recover, but I know I can still be happy despite suffering from this horrible game my mind seems to enjoy playing on me.
One day I’ll be able to gather all of these negative thoughts into a box, tie it with a pretty pink bow and ship it off somewhere else, far away from my mind. It won’t rule my life forever. I won’t let it. But for now I’m smiling. Smiling because I have a beautiful family to keep me strong. Smiling because I finally want to again.
I overheard someone say the other day that really hit home with me. It felt like a turning point.
“Those who are depressed are living too much in the past. Those with anxiety are worrying too much about the future. And those who are truly happy are living in the present moment.”
So I guess I need to live more in the present moment and less in the past and worrying about the future. I need to be thankful for what is right in front of me at this moment and treasure every precious second.
Thank you for reading. Sian x