For Asha, not having her mother had a huge impact on her experience of perinatal anxiety and depression. Asha tells us more about her experience:
My mum would have been there every step of the way with my new baby. She would have been there for the birth, for the long day (and nights!) ahead and just being present so I could share my exhaustion and vulnerability. It’s one of those times in my life I wanted, and needed, my mum to be there.
Losing a parent at a young age is tough for anyone. You go through your own grieving process, and have an inkling that they’ll be times ahead when the grief will be fresh all over again. I suspected having a child would be one of those times, and started to become nervous when I was pregnant as to what it would feel like. Nothing could prepare me for when it all happened as to how much I would have loved, and needed, her to be there – for a shoulder to cry on, to be open to how much I needed help – practical and emotional, and to simply get to know and love my son. I felt lost in an unfamiliar world of motherhood, at times feeling so overwhelmed and so sad that the one person who I thought could help wasn't there.
It's wise to reach out for professional help when you feel like this. I saw a psychologist during this time as for me, they became my objective voice of reason - the ones who can make sense of what I was feeling and assure me that what I was going through was normal.
My closest substitute to my mum has been my partner, sister, close friends and extended family. I encourage you to find these connections, especially if you’re like me and struggle to ask for help. You’ll know the right people when you come across them - the ones that are there to listen, have a laugh with and be by your side – keep them close and do reach out.
For Asha, not having her mother around had a huge impact on her experience of perinatal anxiety and depression. Asha tells us more about her experience.