My Lonely Season as a New Mom

untitled-63

I dreamed so much about being a Mom. I wondered what I would be like and what my kids would be like. The joys and satisfaction of motherhood sparked deep curiosity of who I would become and the role I would take on in my family.

Once becoming a Mother, I realized that my dreams and expectations I had about motherhood were a bit different than what I imagined. In many ways, it is far more rewarding than I could have ever dreamed of. However, in other ways, there were expectations and trials in life as a Mom that made me feel weary and defeated.

During my pregnancy, I remember a close friend sharing with me some of her struggles as a Mom with Postpartum depression. I was naive to think I would never experience such difficulty as a new Mom. My friend was brave to expose her heart to me. However, never did I imagine I would walk through thick walls of depression through sleepless nights and lonely moments, but I did. One morning I laid depleted in my bathtub and knew that something was wrong. I wasn’t quite myself. I was embarrassed and ashamed because I wanted to be a Mom for so long, yet I was experiencing more tears than smiles at that point as a Mother. I was more exhausted than I knew any human being could even feel. And to be blatantly honest, I wasn’t enjoying motherhood. A cloud of shame covered my heart for even recognizing these feelings. For weeks I put on my super triplet mom smile while on the inside my heart was grieving my expectations as a Mom. I knew some of the things I was feeling were very unhealthy and that I needed to take a stand and make a change so I could be the very best I can be for my children. However, sometimes that is not always easy.

Guilt. Shame. Embarrassment.

How dare I even feel so sad about my role as a Mom. I waited for this. I longed for this. I was deeply embarrassed by my unwanted feelings. Guilt covered my being for some time. There was such high when I found out I was pregnant. So many people had been walking alongside me and praying for this time in my life. And then to make the joy of an expectant Mom even more joyful, I found out we were having triplets!! The icing on the cake was our gender reveal video, which went viral and the support came rolling in like you wouldn’t believe. Before I knew it thousands of people were loving on my husband and I and our babies that were destined to be. It was such a high. However, weeks after our babies were home the high came toppling down as the stress and anxiety of caring for my triplets in a healthy and manageable way turned to depression due to the sensitivity and difficulty in feedings and caring for three babies with reflux problems and colic.

Just a couple weeks after we got our triplets home they started showing signs of some pretty bad reflux issues, along with colic. They spit up a ton and we noticed they all were wheezing and coughing. Our babies were feeding every three hours. The feedings typically took (and still do) an hour and half to two hours. Following that I would pump for thirty minutes and start the process over, which would give me enough time for sometimes a cat nap in between feedings. The sleep deprivation in itself was literally making me insane. Our babies, all three of them, were diagnosed with GERD. If you aren’t familiar with GERD, it is severe reflux. We even found ourselves in urgent care with Sawyer one night because his wheezing was so bad his breathing became faint. We have to burp them 6-8 times through every feeding and they usually have more reflux following every feeding. They often cry during their feedings because they anticipate the pain of the reflux. They also need to be sitting up right for 30 minutes after every feeding, which can be hard especially during the midnight hours. I sometimes feel like the baby burping police when anyone other than myself is feeding my babies because they are so sensitive. As you can imagine these issues can be very difficult with one baby, let alone triplets.

The anxiety alone of feeding my babies was enough to swallow my joyful, confident, sparkling spirit as a Mom. There was nothing I could do to help them feel better. The colic hours were exhausting. I felt helpless. I am their Mom, but I couldn’t offer anything to soothe them. The loneliness of my depression and my inability to care for my babies the way I thought I should was taking a toll on me. The gloom in my heart was like nothing I have ever experienced before, quiet and lonely.

My loneliness during this season was worse than my infertility. I wasn’t afraid to share my infertility. And people stood by me because perhaps they had been there too or they understood the agony of an empty womb. When I exposed the rawness of my postpartum heart to some people I trusted, in return I heard things like “I guess you prayed a little too hard,” or “Be careful what you wish for.” This only aided in my anxiety as my role as a Mom and the dark cloud that seemed to saturate my being. Postpartum depression has a bad stigma. No one likes to admit when they are in it. Because postpartum depression is not talked about the way it should be, it made me feel alone in my weary moments as a Mom and made it difficult to be vulnerable even with my own Husband.

Yes, I prayed hard to be a Mom. And God gave me the greatest desires of my heart and more, a Mom to 3 precious hope babies. But there is no such thing as praying too hard. God is great and He has always been in control of my womb, even through some of the most heart wrenching parts of my journey. When God gave me two extra bonus babies it was apart of His perfect plan in making me a Mother. He beautiful painted my story more perfectly than I could have ever made for myself.

My postpartum depression and anxiety has been devastating and embarrassing, but God has used this season in my life to reveal to my heart how much I need Jesus because He is the only One that can offer me true hope and satisfaction in all things. Every meticulous detail in my journey has been used to glorify the King. And God has continued to use this season of broken expectations in motherhood to open my eyes to the gift of sharing burdens. My family has been immensely blessed by many people, some who I do not even know well, that have given their time and hearts to serve and love my family. It is humbling to see a servants heart and remarkable to see Jesus in my brothers and sisters in Christ who have loved on my family. God has used my heartache to draw me closer to Him and reveal a greater picture of his Gospel. I will not be ashamed of my story because God is using it for His glory- even though this season was not what I anticipated it to be.

That day when I laid soaking in my bathtub, I knew it was time to get help. I knew I needed to see a Doctor. I knew things needed to change. I knew I should’t be ashamed of my depression or the season I was in. Soon after that day, I found myself sitting across my Doctor sharing with her what it really has been like being a Mom so far. I have experienced by far some of the greatest moments in my life. And equally, some of the hardest moments of my life. She understood, and even told me I was high risk for PPD. I was diagnosed with situational postpartum depression, which was a hard pill to swallow. I was given some medicine as a security take as needed blanket. I have triplets. Not to mention, reflex and colic triplets. Being a Mom is a hard job and even though it has been a rough start to Motherhood, I am not ashamed of my story or the challenges I have faced as a new Mom.

I am making some big strides as a Mom through this season. My heart is finally covered with more joy than sorrow-even though I am still bearing some sleep exhaustion. Many people told me “it gets better,” and they were right. My babies smile all the time and their personalities are starting to blossom. I rejoice in not feeling lonely like I used to because I am confident in who I am because of Jesus. My identity as a Mother is found in Him. If that means at times it feels like I am standing alone as the depressed and weary Mom for a little while it is okay because I know the truth is I am never alone and He is with me in all my seasons of life. Being a Mom is just a hard job. While this job as a Mother may feel overwhelming and drowning at times, being a mother, is undoubtably the most precious gift the Lord has given me. The love I have for my darling hope babies is like nothing I have ever experienced before. And although being a Mother may come with some really tough days, I will choose to face the trials of motherhood with joy, honesty, and grace.

Advertisements

24 thoughts on “My Lonely Season as a New Mom

  1. Thank you for sharing your story, the ups and the downs. I had feelings of loneliness and depression after having my first who had a hard time with feedings, I can’t even begin to imagine how it would be with three and all with GERD. Just remember you are doing your best and you are everything your babies need! Sending love and prayers your way β™‘

  2. Thank you for sharing your heart! I have a 3 month old and have experienced many of these feelings! Praying for you girl! Praying that we would rely on his strength to get us through the hard days!

  3. I have been following your blog since before you found out you were pregnant the very beginning of this year…It was at a time in my life when I was beginning my own unexplained infertility journey and was searching for answers/hope. It has been so refreshing for me to keep following your journey throughout this process and I truly admire how in everything, you turn to Christ to give Him the glory in ALL situations. After meds and IUI, we are finally 9.5 weeks pregnant with our little miracle! I just wanted you to know that I appreciate you taking the time to blog, and be vulnerable about so many important issues. So many people are searching for answers regarding this hard journey, and I’m glad to know that you are pointing people towards Him. I will be praying for you as you experience this stage of Motherhood that God would continue to show you how He provides and loves you daily. Psalm 61:2. πŸ™‚ Thanks again!

  4. As a mother to one child who had both those issues I can begin to understand what you were going through and I to suffered postpartum depression is not easy and with you having three is harder I can remember taking my baby to his pediatrician and cried saying here take him back but as he told me is a road that we as mothers and fathers must travel but there will come a time when this shell to pass and we look back on it as a learning experience God bless you your family and those precious babies and to let you know you were not alone because as you said god is with you at all times but family and Friends are too with you happy holidays

  5. Hi Desiree,
    Thank you so much for sharing your heart with all of us in such a vulnerable way. I too, suffered with postpartum depression and I agree we all need to be more vocal about the subject. At the time it would have felt so comforting talking to another new mom was felt the same way. Motherhood can feel so isolating at times. My son, now 17 months also had colic and would cry ALL DAY long. When I look back at the first 5 months of his life I can’t believe how challenging they were. I can only imagine with triplets. What I wish I did back then was write more, which you do so beautifully. I encourage you to continue to writing and sharing your heart. It can be very healing. I also discovered a collective blog about motherhood which was such a inspiration to me. Specifically this post:
    http://www.coffeeandcrumbs.net/blog/2014/7/25/when-love-feels-heavy

    The words spoke to me and healed me, as most of the posts on that blog does. It’s true what people say, as time goes on, it does get “easier/better”. Of course every stage has its own challenges, but I promise every day it will feel less heavy. They will get over the reflux. Continue to pray, and know that you are never alone. There a thousands of other mamas who feel like you, me included, and we are walking this journey together. You are enough, and you are an amazing mama! Sending you hugs from Massachusetts!

  6. Oh Sweetie – you are not alone! I am glad you were able to say this out loud and that you found a doctor to help. My second baby suffered colic. I remember spending most of the day in bed with my crying newborn on one side of the crying mom and my crying 2 year old (because everyone else was crying) on the other side with her coloring book and crayons. My husband would find us like that every night when he came home. Not like a sitcom or movie star mommy. I cannot imagine how exhausting it is with three blessings suffering like that.

    Do not beat yourself up. Just surviving day to day with all you have on your plate makes you wonder woman! And in my opinion (as a mother and grandmother, based on no medical knowledge), the high hormone levels of a multiple mom must make you even more susceptible to postpartum blues.

    My oldest daughter is the mother of twins born prematurely. She was so tired those first six months that she really has no memory of much of anything. When looking at pictures, she says it is like looking at strangers. BUT IT GETS BETTER. Their little tummies will mature and eventually, someday, you will get some sleep.

    You are in so many prayers!

  7. It does get better. I have a son with autism and I had anxiety before and after both pregnancies. I do think its wonderful that you are talking about it. I can’t imagine having three newborns at once.

  8. Desiree, I am a friend of your precious mom through the Proverbs 31 Ministries. Thank you so much for your openness and honesty. I can’t imagine taking care of 3 precious babies at one time. Way back when I had my sweet daughter I now know I had serious post pardum depression. No one talked about it, you suffered in silence. I am so grateful for strong women like you who take the power from Satan and put it back in the hands of Jesus by sharing their story. I can only imagine how many are reading this with tears running down their faces because you shared what they too are going through. Gen 50:20 comes to mind. Satan tried to use the greatest gift God gave you to trip you up but God is using your story to breath life into thousands of women who are reading this and saying….me too….someone else knows how I feel….there is hope for me too. Sending prayers for your sweet ones to get relief from their reflux and for you to be able to find rest in this season of your very busy life!!

  9. Pingback: Viral Triplet Gender Reveal Mom Speaks Out About the Shame of Postpartum Depression After Infertility - For Every Mom

  10. Beautiful warrior….you can do this. There is hope and light and we’re all in this fighting with you and for you! β™‘β™‘β™‘ welcome to the sisterhood of warrior moms, we’ll always be here for you!!

  11. Thank you for being a brave warrior mom. I had infertility issues with both children and suffered PPD twice. I’m proud of you for sharing your story. And you are right, there is no such thing as praying too hard. Your words and bravery will help other Moms who may have otherwise been too afraid to seek help.
    Lots of love and warrior mom hugs to you!

  12. Ahhh,i am also mother of 3 but 4,3 and 1.Its a hardest job in the world to manage kids and home simultaneously but don’t loose your hope a day will come when you would miss all these panicful and stressful time.
    You will share with yr kids proudly how much sacrifices and love you gave them.
    All the best Mat God help you and make ur life easy n smooth.

  13. PPD doesn’t discriminate against those who hoped and prayed for their babies, as I also found out when experiencing a perinatal mood disorder during my pregnancy. In fact, those who have experienced fertility issues are even more at risk. Or in my case, once I finally had a viable pregnancy, I was terrified to stay on my low dose of antidepressant and went off. Only for things to get far. far worse.

    You will make it through this mama! Don’t be afraid to do whatever is needed for you to be happy and healthy. That’s the best thing you can do for your family. You can’t pour from a cup that’s empty, right?

    Thanks for sharing your heart with other mamas too. So brave and kind of you!

  14. We too suffered infertility issues. At 3 weeks post partum, I remember screaming (crying) on my bathroom floor “WHAT HAVE WE DONE!?!?!?!?”. PPD is real. It hurts. Please know you are not alone!!! Get the help you need

  15. You are brave. And that bravery will result in you being healthy and strong for your babies. And your Charlize Hope will know when it is her turn to be a mama that there is no shame in body chemistry going awry by the miracle of carrying a baby to term. And Sawyer Reed and Jax Ryan will know that when their wives birth their children, what it means to care for her and love her and support her. And other women, who found you quite by accident because a beautiful gender reveal went viral, who are experiencing the hopelessness of infertility or the loneliness of PPD or both, will find hope in you.

    Your gender reveal video going viral was no accident. Your miracle hope babies are no accident. There are no accidents, no coincidences. Your beautiful life was pre-ordained, And you, sweet Desi, are fulfilling a promise greater than you could have ever imagined. There are no accidents. People found you for a reason!

    I am so glad you are feeling better.

  16. I struggled throughout my twin pregnancy with anxiety and OCD. My amazing and loving husband was the only one I could share with and that was so hard, I was ashamed and embarrassed that I couldn’t control my mind. My husband was amazing but could only support me as being on my team, but never struggling with anxiety himself he didn’t fully understand what I was suffering through.

    Enter twins at 34 weeks. Not too bad for twins, however because I showed no signs of delivering early I was never given anything to help my boys’ lungs develop. Colton was worked on immediately and Hunter was struggling to breathe. Both ended up being life flighted to a hospital 40 minutes away. I was so sick from my delivery and c-section….enter auto pilot mode.

    The first year of their life I was in a haze, I was so in love, so terrified we would lose them, both had reflux, I was nursing, and pumping. no sleep of course…it was hard. I really felt lonely, I was very isolated. Certain friends didn’t understand how fragile the boys were, being premature, we were on a constant time restraint with feedings, so I never wanted to do anything… I finally saw a therapist after their 1st or second birthday and it helped me tremendously. I had been through a lot, as have you…

    I learned that my condition is genetic in my case as far as my anxiety, but also learned that there is nothing “wrong” with me because of it. I talk about it often now because I never want anyone to feel that they are the only ones suffering. It is huge that you shared this with everyone, and a great way to begin healing and to help other women.

    My boys are now almost three and most days I am confident that “I got this”, of course you will have tough mommy days as they grow…but, you will get through this season and it WILL get better as time progresses. I look back and don’t know when the switch happened that I went from feeling that isolation to feeling back to “normal”. Although, my normal will never be the same old me, because I am a mom now πŸ™‚ but I think talking about it helped me so much, having friends who are also open about it has been a lifesaver. I blinked and my boys are no longer these little babes they once were, they are big boys, they are talking to me and have opinions, can do certain things independently. It’s wonderful and exhausting, but such a blessing.

    Continuously praying for you and your family, thank you for being so open. I am sure that your post has helped many other women feel that they are not alone.
    ~A fellow Multiple Momma

  17. Motherhood is something, isn’t it!! I’m so proud of you to share your journey. Know you’re not alone and people continue to pray for you. You’ve got a precious heart and I can see through your words and pictures that God is writing a beautiful story. Hold on to Him, he’s guiding you gently.

  18. Btw, you write so beautifully.

    What you are experiencing is natural, whether or not it happens to everyone. No one said you had to face all of this alone. Doctors, parents, friends and Jesus are there to help. Just reach out to them without shame. You have to be kind to, and take care of, yourself. That way you can be strong enough to take care of your babies.

    Your children are a gift from God without doubt. He not only knows you can handle it, but knows you will excel at it. You are His little lamb too.

  19. I had a less emotional post partum with my firstborn. So it caught me off guard when I was depressed after I came home with the second. Perhaps because I didn’t have a supportive spouse with my oldest I didn’t allow myself a moment to tire out…but suddenly with A wonderful husband, birth, and home- I didn’t deserve this or it was too good to last. Because women like you publish, I reached out to the right people and pulled out. Thank you.

  20. You are very brave and show a lot of confidence in sharing your story, thank you. You will be helping more people than you know. My 2 boys also had reflux with my first having GERD. It certainly makes things harder. Sounds like you have already been given some good advice with keeping them upright for 30mins after a feed, this makes a huge difference. I personally had to take some days minute by minute to cope. Keep smiling when you can and don’t be too hard on yourself πŸ™‚ x

  21. Pingback: My Twinning Eaters!! | ourjourneytoparenthoodblog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s