Anxiety and depression are two words I have become very familiar with over the years. In college, almost out of nowhere, I started having terrible anxiety and I felt like it would start up for no reason. Looking back there were stressors that probably provoked some of it, but I think that mostly it was random. Somewhere along the way that anxiety turned into depression.
I was never terribly depressed, but I did have feelings that were tough to deal with. It was around that time that we lost a very beloved family member, and without going into too much detail, that is when these tougher times began. I took medication for a few years and it did help me, but I knew I didn’t want it to be something I needed forever. When my husband and I got engaged I made a commitment to myself that I would stop taking the medication by the time we were married. I figured it was a good time because there was so much to be happy about and look forward to.
Fast forward a few years and now I am a mom of two sweet little boys. I was lucky enough not to have any Postpartum Depression, and with baby #1 I didn’t even really get the ‘baby blues‘ I had expected. When baby #2 came along though it was different. I definitely loved and connected with him right away but the tears and sad feelings came, (and they came on strong!) more from feeling like I was missing out with my first born than anything else.
Having had a c section and nursing a new baby meant that I spent the first few weeks recovering and feeding the baby all the time, because as moms know, babies want to eat all the time. Though my c section recovery was easier than expected, I felt like I was glued to the couch or my bed and couldn’t do anything. All I wanted to do was pick Brayden up and have some time just to ourselves. I remember I would hear him playing and I would be nursing Bode and just crying and feeling like I was missing everything, you could say I had a major case of FOMO! I had to remind myself to think of happy things, how lucky I am to have both of these babies, and that it would get easier.
Fast forward again and my boys are 3 and 10 months and things are easier, as I knew they would be. Sometimes I long for the days where it was just Brayden and I, and so I try and find some special time with him. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Bode and we would not be complete without him, but there is something about a first born and remembering all the days it was just the two of us that is so special. I’ll bet it can feel that way for him too, one day he was the only baby and the next he was the big brother. Thats why I feel it is important to remind him how special he is, whether it be an ice cream date, a cuddle on the couch, or just staying up to read a book after Bode has gone to bed.
I still get caught up in how busy, messy, and hard being a mom is though, let’s face it, it is so hard! Between not sleeping, working, cleaning, cooking and keeping a house, I find myself feeling anxious and upset sometimes. At times it feels like the smallest thing can make me feel upset and sad. But when I do, I try to remember to stop and breathe and to always choose to be happy. It’s not always the easiest, in fact I think it can actually be easier to be unhappy. I remind myself that this time where they are little is already passing by too quickly, and that they deserve the best mom that I can be. I have a great husband/baby daddy and even when I think my boys are surely going to drive me crazy (all 3 of them, ha!) I slow down and hold on to them and remind myself that this crazy, messy mom life is really the best, and exactly what I wanted!