February 11, 2013

It's Supposed to Be This Way

Recently Beth Anne from Ok, BA! wrote a really lovely raw piece on how it feels to be her and experiencing the ups and downs of life with a lively preschooler.

It was real and full of excitement, love, exhaustion and a little frustration.

Of course, one person piped up with something condescending about getting help and how "it's not supposed to be this way!"

I must boldly disagree.

I don't know Beth Anne from Adam. I gather from reading her blog that we have some similar interests and from twitter that we both love wine and cupcakes. Oh, and we both survived our own personal walk through the hell that is a post partum mental health disorder.

So, I do. I do ever so boldly disagree.

It is supposed to be this way.

This way is happy, and this way is tired, frustrated and content. This way is confusing and full of self doubt and love, so so full of love for a child.

If you have ever gazed at your baby, with a smile on your face while your heart feels like it is rotting in your chest, you welcome the complete and total ecstatic feeling that is a swamping love for your child. Even if it means that sometimes you feel defeated at the end of the day.

Frustration is not a bad thing; it means you feel enough to want to help even though you can't quite figure it out yet.

Despair is not a bad thing; it means you know enough of joy feel its absence.

Escaping to your comfort zone is not a negative thing; it means you are practicing self care enough to realize when you need a break.

I never want to forget the time in my life when things really weren't the way they were supposed to be. I don't want to live in the eternal sunshine of the spotless mind. I'd rather not sit in a paper house and light matches. I'd like to admit that parenting is hard work. It is a battle that we fight every single day. There are highs and lows and sometimes in betweens, but at the end of the day they are normal.

There is a reason that the granny in the check out line behind you at the grocery store gives you a smile and a pat on the shoulder while your child cries out of exhaustion, over stimulation or maybe a desire for more m-n-ms please, and says, "It's hard to believe, but enjoy this. You'll miss it one day."

The reason is because it's supposed to be this way.

Disclaimer: This post comes from the heart of a survivor of PPD/A, and it is not meant to insinuate that PPD, PPA or PPD/A are ever normal. If you think you are or might be experiencing symptoms of PPD, PPA or both I encourage you to reach out for help.