Maybe sad doesn’t quite capture how I feel, depressed more like it. I know all of this will seem jumbled but I need to get it out of my head.
I can’t pinpoint a specific reason either. I feel like I’ve been on a slow decline since 2008 really. Combined with the hardest pregnancy I’ve ever had and the failed VBAC… I just can’t seem to recover. I keep thinking, if I just tried harder. If I just DID MORE. I could have prevented another c-section.
I went from having a large social circle to zero by the time I started my second trimester. My family is non-existent really, perhaps an email once every few months to inquire how my children are doing but that’s about it.
Tristan will be one year old in a matter of weeks. He is walking, laughing, playing, and mimics his big brother to the extreme. Just about two weeks after his birthday, I will have my own and be twenty-nine years old. Insane. I still feel like that scared seventeen year old hopping on a Greyhound bus to meet my online boyfriend (who ended up being Daniel’s biological father, go figure).
I’m overwhelmed with the house. I want to make it lovely and awesome but so many years of abuse (from Keith’s old roommates, from how it was ignored after his father passed away, etc) I don’t know where to start. I don’t know how to make it fantastic for Autumn. I’ve been trying though. I spent most of my money at Target getting nice things for the kitchen table. I even got a Autumn themed piece for the door to make it more welcoming.
I’ve been trying to bake more lately too. I make a decent Banana Oatmeal Bread and Apple Crumble. I also like to bake muffins as it’s an easy snack for my boys.
I’ve generally been steady with my “full fat” WeightWatchers (I will write a post eventually on why I started again) and have lost just shy of twenty pounds.
Yet. I am still sad. I’ve lost pretty much all blogging motivation. I rarely tweet (and I don’t think anyone notices). The laundry is piling up and it’s all so overwhelming to me.
I’m LONELY. I miss having local friends. Yet I am so self-conscious, especially about my weight, that I’ve not made any effort to find any “mom” groups. I can’t handle the rejection.
I know I tend to dwell on things but my anxiety is insane. I worry about the most illogical things really and am quite paranoid about safety.
I wonder, does Daniel’s biological father even THINK about him? Does he know how much his son looks like him? That he is so loving and caring and is the BEST big brother? My son has a half-sister he doesn’t even KNOW and I wonder if they will ever have a relationship.
I wonder what the hell happened to me when I was little to cause the kind of anxiety and thoughts/worries I have today. I mean aside from the emotional / verbal / mental / physical abuse because THAT I am well aware of.
I don’t know how Keith puts up with me half the time really.
How does one do it? How do you go from years of a painful life to creating a happy present and future? I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop, so to speak, and feel very lost.
This post is over a year old which means the content may be outdated or no longer accurate.
I am so sorry you are feeling sad. The best advice I can give you is “ask for help”. Go see someone. Go talk to someone (professional I mean). Don’t be a martyr and try to “struggle through it alone”. Cyber ((HUGS)) to you.
I’ve dealt with this before, granted for different reasons. I keep typing/deleting a huge response because it’s so personal heh. I am totally not a martyr lol. I’ve tried to reach out for help for YEARS but I lack many things, one of which is insurance heh. Also the few times I’ve gotten even a foot in the door, I am prescribed medication IMMEDIATELY without even TALKING with me. All because I have in my medical history that my mother is bipolar. So they assume I must be too. Without talking to me. Yeah, it makes me a bit jaded.
I hear ya! And I’ve heard “this too shall pass” SO many times that I could just quit speaking all together. I know people mean well. I’m lonely, too. I live in Canada with my husband, but ALL of my family live in the states. My husband’s family is … well, that’s a whole ‘nother blog post! Like you, I try to keep busy baking, scrapping, photographing, blogging, taking care of my sweetness, but it’s always there, always. Commercials make me cry. Publicly I’m happy, laughing and talking like nothing is hurting inside. Anyway, I’ll be thinking of you. It’s kinda nice to hear someone else say, “I’m lonely”
No answers for you. Just sending hugs.
Thank you Jake!
I’m not sure you will like my answer. I went on anti-depressants. I felt the same way you describe. I didn’t stay on them long but it was enough to realize that I was really living in a fog. I changed a lot about how I was living. My diet, I started exercising. Exercise is key for me. I’ve been lazy the last month and I feel the fog creeping back in.
Oh yes. I’ve been working on my weight, haven’t done any exercising just due to my foot is still healing, it’s 90-95% there though thankfully! I am also trying to find a sports bra that is super supportive (any suggestions?).
I agree with you though, just getting out of bed and DOING STUFF helps. It’s why I’ve been trying to bake more for the boys. It makes me feel productive.
I’m so sorry that you’re feeling overwhelmed. I wonder if all women go through something similar, but it’s triggered by different things. It’s like a snow ball effect; it starts with something and then just keeps going downhill.
I’m a pollyanna – I’m uber positive about everything, but I get sad when I face too much unspecific criticism. I can handle feedback and welcome it, but when a series of people give me feedback that isn’t specific or helpful, they’re just telling me I’m doing badly, then it starts to get to me.
Friends are hard and I think it’s just as hard for men as it is for women, but women take it really personally. It’s a struggle to find a good, core group of girlfriends, even just 3. At 39 I have a few good friends and I was laughing last night, because I met most of them online.
Take everything one at a time. I hope today is a much better day.
Oh geez, I can NOT handle unspecific criticism. I can’t STAND anything cryptic or wishy-washy lol.
I think for men, they have an easier time of it because at the start, they don’t care if it’s superficial (let’s go to the game!) where women, we try to CONNECT emotionally right away. We see if we are compatible… it’s like dating LOL.
Oh I am convinced I would be utterly insane if I didn’t have my awesome friends online!
I just came across your post through a twitter retweet and just wanted to say your not alone. I have felt quite the same in the past. I hope things get better for you dear, I am almost certain they will but I hope the journey isn’t too long.
Thank you so much for commenting! I know I have a lot of “special” circumstances which I’m sure are causing these feelings partly. I am trying so hard to be semi-functional as much as possible. I think with Tues/Wed (Keith’s days off) he is going to try to get some order back in the house so I can be more functional again.
Oh, Sarah! I’m so sorry! While I didn’t notice the decrease in tweets, I did notice the INcrease in sadness of your tweets. Al I can say is to take it a day at a time, and to try to focus on the happy things instead of the sad or the “what ifs.”
Thank you! That’s what Keith says. That I need to live for the tiny moments and I do try. Like with Tristan walking or how Daniel and Tristan play with each other (I don’t EXIST if big brother is around!).
I make sure to keep shooting photos and cooking dinner and such.
It’s when it’s dark, quiet, everyone is asleep but me that I just reflect on my entire life heh.
when depression kicks in, the best thing to do, is think about all the good things you have with you. sure some things have not gone as planned, but you have beautiful and healthy children, you have a wonderful talent for capturing life on film, you have an amazing way with words (and code). you are kind and you are beautiful.
everyone gets sad. everyone gets depressed. hell this year has been nothing but one giant ball of depression, due to losing my dad in december last year. the only thing i can say is try to keep positive, and motivated, and look at the good that you do have. find something you enjoy and lose yourself in it when you feel bad. that’s what always helps me.
Sadly, that doesn’t really work with depression. Being grateful for the people in your life doesn’t combat how you FEEL. I can adore my children and my boyfriend but that doesn’t stop the never ending anxiety I have about their safety when they aren’t RIGHT NEXT TO ME. Or make me stop freaking out about money. Or change my past really.
Not everyone gets depressed. Everyone gets sad. I think these days the terms are tossed around so glibly that the word is starting to lose meaning.
i’m not a mom so i guess i can’t really empathize correctly in this situation. i am simple when it comes to my depression. i’ve learned to block it out a lot because i used to be a self-harmer. now i’m just blank when it comes to emotional stuff.
honestly i don’t understand the sadness that you feel. but for me. when i feel bad. i look to good stuff in my life. it stops me from slashing my arms and legs with razors so i thought perhaps good thoughts might help you as well. now i just feel kind of awkward and i regret my comment. i apologize.
I don’t know how to quite respond to this but don’t apologize for your comment. One persons way of coping with depression is simply that, THEIR WAY. I think as long as it’s not harming ANYONE, then who is to say it’s the wrong way?
You might want to try getting some counseling. You have a lot of history to unwind, after all, a young enough child that you’re not sleeping full nights (even aside from insomnia), and maybe some Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Having someone help you focus, help you organize steps to take, and be non-judgmentally accountable to might help.
Oh I wouldn’t mind doing some counseling, I just can’t afford it right now. We don’t have insurance.
I don’t know about your town – and my experience in the area is dated, especially given the financial state the state is in – but when I was living in Glenview the city had social workers that were free or reduced cost. I have no idea if even Glenview still has them now, but something like that might be an option.
Or maybe OCC does some counselor training and their students need people to practice with? When I had no insurance/money AND was in Illinois I got my teeth cleaned by the local community college dental hygienists trainees (wish I could find that here in Maryland!)
I wonder though if they would even have anyone who is experienced with birth trauma?
Have you looked into a birth debriefing service? I think it’s basically a trained professional offering counselling for mums suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder following stressful births. I don’t know if you can get it over there but might help?
I feel you on the lonely though. I need a good mum friend but struggle to connect with people. It’s not a fear of rejection here (I’m fairly ballsy :D) just not ‘clicking’ with the mums I do come across. The only exceptions are my LLL meets and sling meets, but these are only monthly.
If you want some online buddies and/or to talk about your birth I can heartily recommend :)
I don’t think we have anything like that here?
Oh yes, my more immediate area is pretty mainstream, heck my own twin sister is the ultimate in mainstream, so I feel like if I can’t even connect with my TWIN when it comes to parenting, how will I connect with a stranger?
Thanks for sharing the forum link!
*hugs* Do you have insurance? Can you see a therapist? Maybe an impartial outlet to explain your problems do would help.
I know what you mean about having no local friends. :(
My biological father had NO involvement in my life whatsoever of his own choice. I know I’ve thought about him from time to time, but I certainly don’t consider him my father. Even though your ex had more involvement in Daniel’s life than my dad did, it doesn’t sound like he really cares very much.
Maybe one day he’ll grow up, but by then it will be completely Daniel’s choice to involve him. Embrace the fact that Keith cares so much for Daniel and do whatever you can to try to forget the sperm donor.
I really don’t think about the bio-father too much, it’s just here and there, or when I see him (or his girlfriend, not sure) visiting OSN constantly.
He seems like another lifetime ago. I was totally another person then!
I’m sorry Sarah. I know it’s easier said than done, but I try very hard to not dwell on what I can’t change, and instead focus on what I can change.
In regards to your house, have you thought about starting with a fresh coat of paint? Maybe a burnt orange, a sunny, warm marigold, a deep purple… something to brighten up the room(s) and maybe provide you with photography inspiration or just great backdrops for future photos.
Oh I am a dweller, for sure!
We have painted the bathroom and the kitchen, although we don’t like the kitchen color LOL. Our problem is that it all takes time/money which we don’t have much of. I really REALLY need a new kitchen floor and carpeting… everything is around 30yrs old from when his father built the house.
Keith bought me new bed lines for Autumn, I will have to take some photos. One is a rusty red color and the other a deep purple. SO pretty. I also got new brown curtains for the bedroom (Autumny!).
I never had the chance to ever decorate so I’m not quite sure HOW to do it.
I’m going to echo what Kristin said about anti-depressants. While a lot of people don’t like to be on meds, anti-depressants can really help. Long term depression can have actual physical effects on our brain, specifically your hypothalamus, which the anti-depressants help stimulate. Even a low dose helped with my depression.
Also, exercise will help as well as making sure you get out into the sunlight every day. It will help you get back into doing things you love, like blogging and whatnot, which will in turn help you get back to normal even more.
Doing chores and trying to fit in things I like to do every day has really helped me feel better. Like, at least I got SOMETHING done today, ya know? It’s been a long time since I’ve felt 100%. Ever since my job fell through life has just been tossing one shit circumstance at me after another and it’s very hard to stay positive. But I’ve been able to hang on and pull through and I’ve crawled out of a very deep hole with all my limbs in tact. (and most of my mind)
I totally feel you there. DOING SOMETHING productive makes me FEEL better.
I baked two loaves of banana oatmeal bread tonight and made chicken tacos for dinner.
Tomorrow hopefully we can get control over the laundry heh.
I’m really, really awful at comforting people.
I’ve been struggling with seasonal depression since puberty. It usually goes away on its own as I’m mostly depressive in winter and autumn, plus I’ve learned to drag myself out of my misery when it got too overwhelming. I personally don’t recommend taking anti-depressants, as some people put on some weight when they’re prescribed Prozac. Chemically induced happiness is not true happiness IMO. But I totally recommend exercising, eating raw, organic vegetables and meat (but only if your non-French stomach can stand it ^^), and going out for long walks.
Cook. Read. Write. Make yourself a shopping list on Etsy. Take pictures. Focus on yourself a little bit. Whatever. We have a saying in French: “Fais ce qu’il te plaît.” It means “Do as you please.”
I won’t tell you you have wonderful kids, a wonderful boyfriend, a beautiful life full of love and creativity. You already know that. You don’t need me, or anyone else to remind you that.
Had I been born in the outskirts of Chicago, I would’ve loved getting to know you, perhaps befriend you. I’ve met fantastic people on the internet. Why don’t they all live in Bordeaux? We’ll probably never meet for a cup of tea or anything. It’s just not fair. But the explanation is simple: awesome people are damn rare these days. I just cherish the relationship we have even if it’s miles away.
Please get well. Think of all the people who love you, here on OSN, or elsewhere, or even within your own family. Your little, cozy family. :) Proof enough that you’re definitely worth something, at least to them. It’s all that matters.
Oh yes. When I was a teen I was on Prozac for a month, then Wellbutrin, then Lithium, etc. Everyone I saw didn’t TALK to me, just read my medical history, “oh, the mother is bipolar” and would write a prescription. It was SO frustrating.
LOL well I’m 1/4 french canadian if that counts at all!
I’ve been trying to cook more/bake more. I baked two loaves of banana oatmeal bread tonight.
Been trying to shoot more photos.
I think once we get the laundry 100% done and get everything picked up, it will help a good bit.
The decline in tweets (and non photo blog posts) was noticed. I don’t have much helpful to say, except that I think you are awesome and I hope everything gets better for you soon. And congrats on the 20 pounds.
Thank you! I’ve eaten not the best the past 24 hours. Not totally bad but not the best. First time really since starting WW that I’ve not been 100% strict with points.
Hey sarah. I saw this entry and I figured I would comment. As you and Keith both know, I don’t have a good home life. I’m living in fear 24 hours a day. I’ve had horrendous anxiety since I was a child. The only time I don’t feel like crap, or like something bad is going to happen when I get home is when I’m doing something active. I go bike riding because it’s the only time I can have a clear head and think about things I want to do, writing a book, or really anything that I don’t have the time to think about when i’m at home or work.
I am someone who gets depressed quite often. I have long stretches of time where I hate myself and i hate everything around me. And I did try anti-depressants. I know there’s a stigma around them, but I was willing to give it a shot for awhile, because frankly, anything was better than how i was feeling. SO, went on them for a few months and slowly felt like myself again. AND I was having less and less panic attacks. I was able to cope with things that would have made me freak out before. I didn’t want to stay on them for a long time, so I slowed with the dosage until i was completely without. I’m still able to cope with things (within reason, my father’s actions will always bother me), and speak to people without getting panicky. The benefits are still there. It was almost like a “kick-start” to happiness. Sorry for the rambling, but I figured I would explain how I used them, and how they helped me.
Go out, take a nice walk with the kids (or even yourself if you want to clear your mind) and you’ll feel a little better.
Also, Sarah, I would hope you and Keith consider me a friend. I do try to be around as much as I can, and help when I’m needed. You’re not completely friend-less.
It’s so hard for me to evaluate if my emotions are stemming from my past, from my environment or if it’s a chemical imbalance.
Oh you are totally our friend! You’re Auntie Jen to the kids!!
There are a lot of help lines you can call for free if you need to talk and they can provide you with inexpensive or free options for getting more help if you need it.
I know what it’s like to see wonderful things in front of you like your children, and your weight loss, your talent, your significant other… and even facing all of these amazing things and people, you can’t accept that good things are happening to you because you’re dwelling on bad things that have, or could happen. I know the key is to forgive, and live in the moment, but I can’t seem to do that either. I’ve been suffering with severe anxiety, and I’m afraid if I don’t learn to deal with it I will develop persistent GAD (again, something I worry too much about irrationally).
It doesn’t sound like just a funk, it sounds like depression, and I hope I don’t sound like an asshole when I say that you should seek help for yourself on behalf of your sons. I think you’re an incredible mommy, and I wish that my mother had been half as concerned for me as you are for those boys, but she let her depression go untreated and couldn’t be there for me or my brother.
What is GAD?
If I had insurance I would be looking for a counselor, however, it’s too expensive to do it without insurance.
GAD is general anxiety disorder.
That’s why I suggest a hotline. 1-800-PPD-MOMS is a free call. They are primarily for moms dealing with Postpartum Depression, and depression resulting from traumatic birthing experiences.
They’re there if you need them.
I will have to look into that… I know I don’t have PPD however I do suffer from PTSD from the birth.
Awww sad. :( I love you mama. You are fantastic and awesome and talented.
I love you too and thank you!! You keep me sane with txting lol.
Do you think you’re feeling worse because of Tristan’s impending birthday? You had such a traumatic time trying to bring him into the world and such a heavy weight of having “failed” to do it in the way you’d hoped. Even excluding Erin’s hospital stay, her birth was incredibly traumatic for me. What I’d hoped for and what I got were worlds apart, so her turning one was a very difficult time for me. If you don’t have access to professional help, perhaps seeking out a birthing trauma group online might be helpful?
Oh gosh, totally! This time last year I was dealing with MEAN OB’s, freaking out how I would do it without insurance. Yet I was still 100% sure I would SUCCEED at having a VBAC.
Do you know of any online groups for birth trauma?
Unfortunately not. I’ve asked a friend if she knows anywhere and am waiting for her to get back to me :/
Ok, thank you! Just let me know!
I think doctors and the like should be more aware of the after effects of a traumatic birth. When my son was born early and spent a month in the NICU I wasn’t “right” for a very long time. Around his birthday (which is coming up this month) I get flashbacks, I can’t see anything related to babies in hospital without crying and getting close to a panic attack. I burst into tears (in public!) about a month ago when I saw a preemie doll in a toy store. I can’t even really remember much about my sons early life as if I was in shock for months afterwards.
As for the question “How do you do it?” You just do, you just get on with it eventually and still have setbacks every now and then.
There are a lot of things I’ve done and been through in the past that I don’t talk about online, ever. But if you want to talk please feel like you can email me.
Thank you so much for sharing!
I feel so alone in this most of the time. My twin sister is absolutely useless to talk to. She had the “perfect” mainstream birth (although from my perspective there was a lot to be changed/desired but it’s HER experience). I’m told to “get over it already”.
I may have to take you up on the email offer!
Sending you a big hug!
You see, you’re not alone – we are out here listening to you. From the comments i’ve read above, there’s some good advice, which you can follow or not – but only you know deep inside of you what you need to do. Take little steps, try to accomplish one thing a day which moves you forward (take a walk, buy a bunch of flowers to decorate, clean out our closet) –
I don’t have any friends around me physically either – that can be hard, so I’m trying to create new friendships with blogging — it’s slow and I hope just to have a few — feel free to write to me (I’m an excellent pen pal!).
Again, big hugs!!!!
Thank you! I keep trying to be productive as it helps and lately been working on being LESS nocturnal.
I notice when you don’t tweet, and that you haven’t been around a ton. I feel like every time I message you I am bothering you though, so I keep to myself :(
I know how you feel in general though, especially about the house. I have been trying to do nice things with our house also… the people who owned it before my husbands aunt purchased it just royally screwed things up big time. All the projects I want to do, cost so much money, and then now with another baby on the way it leaves even less money for these projects.
Oh, and the failed VBAC, I get it. I am right there with you, and I am SCARED shitless of being pregnant right now. I can’t find a provider who will take me on, I have a number of consults set up in the upcoming weeks, and I am so worried I will get “no” after “no” and then some more no’s… I don’t even want to go to these appointments, or put in the effort because the no’s are just going to be a jail slap in the face.
I sank into a deep depression in the months after my failed VBAC and luckily my husband was able to pull me out before he went back to work full time.
I know Keith has gone back to work, and it is hard being alone all the time. I know, my husband works 60ish hours a week now, and is going to class. If you ever need to talk, I am here!
I’m sorry to hear that you’ve been dealing with this – and although we’ve never spoken one-on-one, if you’d ever like an unbiased, third-party ear to listen, I’d be more than happy to be that ear. Life can be so unbearably stressful, and all consumingly depressing, and as much as any one who comments can say “I understand what you’re going through” – just know that your lack of tweets and postings, has been noticed. Just sending some love you way. :)
Aw hun I am so sorry you are feeling down, I would say I have noticed the lack of tweets but I don’t even check twitter anymore, I think the advice from the fellow comments are great and I have noticed that you haven’t done any non photo blogs for awhile and I was wondering what was wrong :(
I would keep busy even if it is just tidying, I do know the feeling of being alone, being off from uni makes me feel very distant from the world :hugs:
I’m trying super hard to be more productive, which generally means a lot more cooking/baking LOL.
Wow & *hugs* – this is totally where I’ve been for the past month and heading into. Second pregnancy, losing track of friends, trying to sort out the house with toddler in tow, I’ve also been retreating into cooking/knitting and less blogging and tweeting.
Honestly, as someone else pointed out, there’s already a lot of good advice on here. For me, with postpartum depression after the first pregnancy, I was really against taking antidepressants and thanks to my amazing midwife, found a naturopath who put me on a mix of herbs that got me through it.
I hope you start feeling better soon. I love reading your posts and have followed you on Twitter, even though I’m generally MIA on there these days.
Sorry I haven’t stopped by in a while. I’ve been feeling a bit like you perhaps. But I wanted you to know that I think so often the stuff we feel is circumstantial. If life were perfect would we feel wonderful? Maybe not. But it would sure make it easier to be happier. My thoughts are that we should embrace our feelings when we feel them. Allow yourself a good hearty cry, scream, craptastic day to wallow, or a tub of ice cream. Whatever it takes. Hugs!