After experiencing a rough childhood myself, there was nothing in this world that I wanted more than to provide my daughter with a perfect life. Before having Payton, I honestly didn’t think anything could ever come between me and her. But when she was born in 2015, everything changed.
My overwhelming motivation to give this little girl I’d given birth to everything I didn’t have was taken over by an unfamiliar and frightening urge to run away from it all. This was a feeling I had never expected and was completely unprepared for. My burning desire to give this little girl the world meant I wasn’t able to open up to anyone about how I was feeling.
After being in and out of doctors looking for advice on Payton’s excessive crying and feeling that no one believed me about the extent of her crying and not feeding, I was nearly ready to give up. But I kept pushing through. In my mind my little daughter needed the perfect mother, and a mother that wanted to give up because she couldn’t handle her baby crying would be failing at her job.
One day when she was around 2 months old it reached a stage that I had to call my partner to come home from work because I was afraid I couldn’t handle it any longer. I had let myself get to a scary point where I was afraid I was either going to hurt her, or myself.
My partner called the doctor right away and we went straight in. I couldn’t bear to bring myself to tell anyone, but I swallowed my pride and spilled everything. The doctor had me fill out a questionnaire and I was diagnosed with postnatal depression and prescribed me with anti-depressants.
I felt ashamed, but at the same time relieved. The doctor also referred my daughter to a paediatrician, who then later diagnosed her with chronic reflux which explained the feeding difficulties and the crying.
After being diagnosed I found it in me to confide in a friend who helped me immensely. The doctor also provided me with some phone numbers to call if I needed on the spot help and we made weekly follow up appointments.
Now that my recovery is well under way I am so relieved to be providing Payton with the best life I can, and am feeling better than ever before.
If there was anything that I could say to any new mums who are struggling is that it gets better! And don’t ever stop believing in yourself. This is why I’m now a PANDA Community Champion; I want to share my story to help others so they know they can recover!
"This was a feeling I had never expected and was completely unprepared for. My burning desire to give this little girl the world meant I wasn’t able to open up to anyone about how I was feeling."