1 year ago, if you told me I would be writing a post about the ways Postpartum Anxiety has made me a better mom, I might have been tempted to trip you while you walk by. (No offense. It was a tough time.)
At the time, when I felt stuck in the fog and consumed with the fear that I would live in that darkness forever, I could not see the benefit of going through PPA. Hell, I wasn’t even convinced it was something to go through. It tricked me into thinking it was my life. Not a month or a season, but the whole damn calendar.
And now, 1.5 years and 25mg of Zoloft later, I’m able to see what I couldn’t back then. I’m able to appreciate what I’ve been through. I can pat myself on the back, while showing off my war wounds with pride. And I’m even able to see how PPA has made me a better mom.
5 WAYS POSTPARTUM ANXIETY HAS MADE ME A BETTER MOM
1. I don’t sweat the small stuff (as much). As a mom, there is a A LOT of small stuff. Every day all day there is small stuff that has the potential to add up to big stuff that can lead to a mama breakdown. Going through Postpartum Anxiety has given me perspective. Yes, it’s super annoying when Harper asks for more cottage cheese during dinner, just to whip it across the room moments later. But it’s not the end of the world. I’m less worried about the rough edges. The wrinkles under my eyes? I earned those bad boys. No time for a shower today? There’s always tomorrow.
2. SO MUCH GRATITUDE. There’s something to be said about going through hell, and coming out the other side. I am filled with gratitude. I appreciate small moments with my girl. I can take it all in. Even while going through PPA, I searched for one thing every single day for which I could be grateful. I focused on it and it’s changed the way I think. Gratitude can change everything.
3. I’m more open and willing to talk about the hard stuff. Going through PPA has made me more vulnerable. I want to talk and connect with other moms. I want us to learn from each other. I want to talk about the hard stuff, probably even if I just met you. (Consider yourself warned.) Because that’s the stuff that means the most. It’s the stuff that connects us and makes us feel less alone.
4. I know my strength. If I can get through PPA, I can do anything. Simply put, I’m a badass who is capable of amazing things. (And, so are you.) I will raise my daughter to believe she’s worth the fight. Because it’s the truth. We are warriors, mamas.
5. My faith has grown leaps and bounds. Family support has helped. Finding a wonderful Dr. has helped. Zoloft has helped. But none of my healing was possible without my faith. PPA has brought me closer to God, and that has made me a more loving and understanding mama.
If you’re in the middle of the battle, here’s what I will tell you: IT WILL GET BETTER. You can get help. You can talk to your husband, your mother, your Doctor. And you can pray.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel and it is brighter than you can imagine.