babyMaternity Magazine
Creative Child

The Uninvited Visitor

by Michelle Dempsey M.S., CPRW

From the moment you conceive, it seems you are inundated with information about Postpartum Depression. At least that’s how it felt for me.

Maybe I paid more attention to this section in my pregnancy books and baby classes because of personal experience?

Having just heard of a college friend who took her own life just one month after her daughter was born, I was fixated on the topic, and tried to educate myself as much as possible, as if this might help me avoid such a troubling ailment.

Why was I worried? Depression was not my problem.

But anxiety was, before pregnancy, and much worse during those 9 months. The problem for me was that nobody spoke about anxiety and pregnancy. There wasn’t a section in my pregnancy book for Postpartum Anxiety, just depression – but didn’t everyone know that untreated anxiety can lead to depression?

My usual fix on an anxious day was a sweaty workout, a glass of wine, a night out with friends – none of which were possible in pregnancy (at least not my pregnancy). With all of my band-aids gone, I was left to navigate the serious hormonal overload and bouts of anxiety all on my own – and this was no easy task.

“Take a walk,” I’d often hear. Really? A walk?

A walk and some fresh air has never done anyone any harm, but when you are crippled by your own fears, worries, and feelings, a walk just provides a prettier landscape to continue sweating the small stuff.

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