The calm before the storm….

I have always had intense menstruation in my life, severe cramps so bad I’d be admitted at a hospital.  I remember waking my father up(and you know how embarassing that is to discuss such things at 14) to take me to ER. I would cry myself to sleep for the 1st 3days of each of my cycles. My gynae would jokingly say “You should just make a baby, that usually makes PMS better” (like having a child at 14 was even an option).  But he never really explained what PMS is, and how my crying is not just from the pain, but hormones too.  And so I was put on a pill which I guess helped a bit, and when that period came I’d just drug myself with painkillers.  This went on for years, until I had my daughter at the age of 25.  Then things got better and the pain was manageable. 

Then I had my son, 7 months ago.  At 4 weeks pp I could not sleep at all, I stayed up for 5 nights, making sure that my son was breathing, I thought if I even winked for a second, he would die in his sleep. Okay, someday I’ll have the courage to tell my story in detail (phew!, tearing up already).  So to cut a long story short I was diagnosed with ppd at 6 weeks postpartum and my 1st postpartum period came 3 weeks later.  I was already having more good days than bad, and then BOOM, I’d fall right back into the dark hole.  My psychiatrist would tell me to increase my dosage,  “Maybe your dosage is still on the low side for you, it takes a while to master this”.  And so each month, around that time we’d do the same excercise, me weeping uncontrollably, feeling so helpless and ashamed that I’m that one case that would never get over ppd.  I’d stalk poor Katherine at Postpartum Progess with the same questions…Why is it taking so long? Why do I keep on falling back? Is there even anyone like me?  Why do I keep on increasing my dosage?  I’d go through all blogs to try find some solace in their words, just something to hold onto to get me through.

Then one day whilst going through random posts at Postpartum Progess, I came across these words…” See, in my opinion, there’s something almost worse than postpartum depression, and that’s being reminded of what PPD felt like and being afraid that you’re not exactly out of the woods yet despite having thought so for months.”……..This was a post written by James from James and Jax…and what a lifesaver this was.  That was an AHA! moment for me.  I’m not a freak, nor a failure…What I am experiencing is extreme PMS.  My psychiatrist and I have decided to wait this period out, so we can be really sure that its PMDD.  So no increase at all.  It always feels so much better to figure things out in this journey, yes it might have taken long, but thank God now I know.  I know that the next couple of days are going to be rough, I know that I will cry a lot, I know that I might not always handle it as well as I’d like, but thank God I know.  So as I go into this storm, I exhale.  I pray to God to give me the strength to pull through, I ask my mommas at PPDChat to hold my hand, and I close my eyes and walk through this.  This too shall pass….it always does. 

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0 thoughts on “The calm before the storm….

  1. I could have written this! I had surgery at the age of 19, they went in with a scope to see where the pain was coming from. When they couldn't find anything, the doctor told me to wait after I had my first child. Ovulating used to make me sick too, and pregnancy made me horribly sick. I guess I don't deal well with hormones! I'm holding your hand through this!

  2. Holding your hand & squeezing it tight. (but not too tight, haha)

    I am so glad you found my post to be helpful. I asked Katherine to post it on her site because I don't think severe PMS is discussed enough, and I keep hearing from so many women who suffer from it. Women who have had a perinatal mood/anxiety disorder like us feel its effects even worse because it can remind us of having had PPD or other PMADs. Thank you for talking about your experience. I hope you find relief soon. Please keep me posted!

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