My husband is struggling with the fact I have Post natal depression #PND

My best friend had some bad news recently so me and my other bestie went to visit her on Saturday, a surprise visit. It was just wonderful to see her face light up. We had a proper fun day – laser quest, go karting, meal out, drinks and bingo – yes bingo on a Saturday night (don’t ask).

It was an early start for me, getting up at 6.30am to get myself showered, the kids bathed and ready for the day, breakfast, Jenny all ready for ballet, spare clothes put out, changing bag packed, sorting everyone’s meals for the rest of the day, writing Emily’s routine down, then sorting myself, packing snacks, drinks for me and Alex.. My husband had the children from 9am until we got back at midnight. It was a long, heartbreaking day but I’m so glad we went. 

When I got back Emily woke up, I was so tired and the baby waking up was the last thing I needed, but I dealt with her and stayed up with her until she settled about 2am (even though the husband was up anyway watching prison break) – I suppose he had done his fair share of childcare for the day. 

The next morning I could just feel the tiredness and irritability creep in. The previous day had wiped me out. The 6 hours on the road, the stress and upset, keeping overly happy and upbeat, I felt like making sure everyone was enjoying themselves was my number one task and I didn’t realise what an emotional strain it was.. I was plain and simply exhausted. I cancelled plans with friends, and just planned on staying in and then go out for Sunday lunch somewhere as a late celebration of Emilys 1st birthday. Jenny had been invited to a friends so I got her ready to go and she left for the afternoon. 

My husband went to church in the morning, then went straight out afterwards to go to play squash then relax at the gym and in the hydrotherapy pool. He came back 10 minutes before we were due to leave for the meal but he still needed to shower. This immediately got me on edge as I hate being late for things, in retaliation of me being annoyed at his tardiness he pointed out that I hadn’t sorted a pile of washing from the drier which also got my back up.. And he also said that he looked after the kids all by himself yesterday and he actually managed to keep the house clean and tidy, which I took as a dig at me. All in all, 
I felt stressed, exhausted and upset. I felt useless, rushed for time and under appreciated. 

We fell out. I snapped at him, he snapped back and it turned in to a full blown argument about my post natal depression. He said, “I’m not pussy-footing around you any more, you need some tough love, I’m not walking on eggshells, it’s just not me. I don’t understand you – why can’t you just find something to be happy about? There are plenty of people worse off than you, do you not like your life? You have it easy compared to loads of other people! And you’re talking about wanting another baby?! You need to do some exercise, get happy! Stop moping – these therapists are just being too nice to you, I’m sick of it, it’s not working you need tough love.” 
That helped. I feel much better – having my husband shout at me in the car was one of the lowest points of this shitty PND journey.

What I need is my husband to be understanding, I need a little tact and sensitivity. I need for him to understand that I’m anxious and on edge sometimes and not to add extra stress on to my plate and make me feel worse for not completing every task and nit-picking over the tiny things. 

Although we ended up making friends, I couldn’t shake his words.

That night he showed the usual signs of wanting to ‘get some’ and I said I’d like some cuddles in bed (which could possibly lead to something else but I really just wanted to be held and feel loved before anything else could happen). He said he would rather stay down stairs and watch prison break. I went to bed alone.

The next morning he wouldn’t get up with the kids, he did his usual of staying in bed until 8.50am (the latest he can stay in bed until he has to leave to drop Jenny off at school). When he came downstairs I quizzed him about all of the snack cupboard being eaten (crisps, dime bars, Galaxy, haribo, cake and biscuits) and he said “well if there was something worth coming to bed for maybe I wouldn’t stay up late”. Then he mentioned that he felt like we were “friends who lived together” because we haven’t been intimate in a week.
I am struggling so badly right now. I can’t believe my own husband can talk to me like that. I am beyond hurt. I know it can’t be easy for him with me having my moments of panic and stress but it doesn’t excuse this. 

I feel like I am juggling 20 juggling balls high in the air, one ball may represent a chore I need to do, one ball may represent a nappy change or a bottle feed, hanging up washing, loading the dishwasher or doing the school run. It’s taking all of my concentration to keep them all high up there, in order and not falling. Then something knocks me, like being rushed, a time limit, the husband having a go at me or picking apart the jobs that I have done or haven’t had time to do yet and I drop one of the balls but instead of just one ball dropping, they all come crashing down and I stop in my tracks and cannot function. Although my brain is screaming at me to keep going and act like a normal human being my body can’t and I end up staring at the wall like a deranged person.

I want to feel normal again.. Although I can feel the post natal depression cloud lifting I still have moments of absolute panic and severe anxiety. In these moments I feel like I have drunk 20 cups of coffee and the caffeine is coursing through my veins and I am shaky and panicking. 

I love my brother. 33 weeks + 1 day pregnant.

I went to the local hospital the check the position of my anterior placenta. My brother Josh went with me as Luke was working but I also want Josh to feel involved as he’s come a long way to be with me. At only 18 years old he has shown me that he is more responsible and thoughtful than most fully grown mature men. (The real reason he came back to the UK was because he felt a responsibility to look after me and play the role of ‘big brother’ even though he’s 6 years younger than me.) He said that the bullying behaviour of Luke’s family made his heart hurt and he had to come to my rescue. I’m so glad he’s here, he is the best brother a girl could ask for and is so sensitive to my feelings. He’s already made me feel more supported and really at ease with the whole family situation, I no longer feel outnumbered and ganged up on; I feel very wanted, reassured, loved and included. We walked to the hospital together and he wouldn’t shut up about seeing his niece, he was so excited and was asking me all sorts of questions. When we finally settled down with me on the scanning bed and him on the edge of his chair next to me we looked at each other and giggled; it felt great to be sharing such a special thing with him. The sonographer jellied my large belly and the baby filled the screen. No longer was she hidden in the corner of the screen all teeny tiny like at the 7 or 12 week scan, her head alone filled the screen! You could see that she was massive, as the sonographer moved the scan probe, only one body part could be seen at any one time. The aim of the scan was to see where my placenta was lying but they were struggling to get the exact measurements that St Marys hospital needed for my appointment there the next day, so the sonographer showed me a long probe and proceeded to put a condom on it and told me she would need to do an internal scan. Well as soon as ‘dildo cam’ had been shown to us my brother scarpered! I couldn’t see him for dust! It was a very uncomfortable feeling with ‘dildo cam’ inside me trying to view my placenta but the lady was professional and I was trying to stay calm. They finally got my measurements and I was free to leave although on leaving the room and seeing my brother in the waiting room I couldn’t help but blush!

DO NOT TOUCH! 32 weeks +5 days pregnant.

I had a random girl in a bar toilet come up to my bump today on one of my several wee trips. She knelt down and actually groped me WITHOUT my permission, and come to think of it without any warning either. So once she got up from kneeling I groped her boobs. A lot. I think people need to understand that not everyone is all free and ok with being groped and that just because you are carrying a massive blessing of an unborn child in your tummy, it is NOT ok to touch people without asking, especially when they are strangers; it’s creepy. Even though I know my anger and response isn’t normal, I can’t help it. I’m sure it’s the hormones; I’m starting to behave like an escaped mental patient!

Pregnancy sex and heartburn. 31 weeks +3 days pregnant

I am feeling the need to write about sex as it appears to be not particularly written about in the books I’ve read. Having sex is getting particularly difficult at this stage and ‘spooning’ is literally the only semi-comfortable position we have found. It is like completing an obstacle course these days and having sex like a normal couple is completely out of the question. Although I am more in the mood for sex than I ever have been, I get uncomfortable and tired very quickly. The upside is that he can’t get me pregnant! Although my body has changed so dramatically, Luke still says he fancies me but in that department I am large, tired and when the baby kicks we end up laughing and that’s kind of a mood killer! I not only feel frumpy but unkempt too, I can’t see my lady area and am paranoid that it looks like the “gardener” has been on holiday instead of mowing my lady garden. Even reaching down to shave my legs is a massive chore.

I’m struggling with new pregnancy difficulties every day. To get up off the floor I roll onto my side and then on my hands and knees then walk my hands towards my knees and from kneeling I slowly stand up – my goodness what an effort! I feel slow and heavy like I’m struggling walking through water. No matter how much I try to move quicker I’m just stuck in the mud, struggling, sweaty and out of breath and this is just doing simple tasks like getting myself ready in the morning or climbing stairs. My ribs ache, my lower back is so sore, I struggle to catch my breath and feel bruised and battered all over and inside as well as outside as my body is being stretched to the extreme. Sleeping is now impossible; I struggle getting comfy even with one pillow between my thighs another between my knees easing the extreme weight and pressure, one wedged under my swollen belly and several keeping my neck comfy. My bump is massive and I constantly underestimate the sheer size of it, I unintentionally close doors in it, stand too close to people and knock things over with it. I have to open my legs really wide when sat down to try and reach or lean forward so my bump can fit between my legs, I can’t do my shoes up or put my own socks on and I feel about 4 years old. Acid reflux, and in turn heartburn has struck majorly I’m now drinking Gaviscon like juice, and I keep a big bottle in my handbag at all times. I find the heartburn is triggered mainly by fresh orange juice and spicy foods but it can strike at any time especially when I’m lying down. Goodbye sleep, how I will miss you so.

Force feeding information and opinions. 20 weeks + 2 days pregnant.

It’s strange how complete strangers or people you hardly know feel the need to push all sorts of horrendous information on you when you didn’t ask for it. It’s happening quite a lot now. Even when you actually butt in and tell them to stop and shut up, they completely ignore you, and carry on with the battle scene tale of scalpels and forceps. And if they’re not giving me a gruesome Stephen King horror story of labour, I’ve got people coming up to me in the street and telling me I’m having a boy or I’m having a girl – point blank convinced they are correct. If I say ‘well I just don’t know yet’, they’ll scrutinise every aspect of my cravings, morning sickness (or lack of it), the way I’m ‘carrying’ my bump, assess my back fat, bum and love handles then tell me they’ve either made the right decision or change their mind and say the other gender. I’m getting a little pissed off at being looked at like I’m a piece of meat by old women who feel the need to take up 10 minutes of my time even though they know they’ll never see me again in my whole life; and even if I did recognise them in the street a year later with my bundle of joy and told them they were right (or wrong) I’d probably get told to ‘move along’ by the police for being a crazy person intimidating and aggravating the elderly.

This has got me thinking, women have an opinion on everything, especially women who are mothers; there are certain topics of conversation which trigger mass debates – especially online on the Babycentre website.  Finding out the sex of a baby at the 20 week scan, pain relief to use in labour and breast or bottle feeding are amongst the most popular ones I’ve encountered so far. Some women are really vehement on their opinion, it’s a little scary.

Any feedback on my posts so far?

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The baby name process. 22 weeks + 3 days pregnant.

We went out for dinner with our good friends Becca and Richard to a local Italian restaurant and had the baby name discussion. As we were reading the menu I said that I’d like a traditional name for a girl and I like Evelyn, which can be shortened to Eve or Evie and I’d like her middle name to be Grace. There! Name chosen, that was that and on to ordering pizza, or so I thought. Luke contested saying he didn’t like the name and considering she is half his he should have some say. Now I’m very protective over my bump and as I’m carrying her, eating well, having to use the toilet ALL the time, having to push this little girl out of lady parts and stretching my tummy skin to within an inch of its life I beg to differ, but he does have a point so I hear him out! One of the first names he says is Jennifer which I immediately dismiss because he mentioned it and I’m a hormonal pregnant lady who has the right to be unreasonable at any time. But he does have a point, he has picked a name that is not only traditional, beautiful, timeless and goes with the middle name Grace, I also like the shortenings Jen and Jenny. Sorted, Jennifer Grace it is! Now on with ordering pizza!