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Friday, June 7, 2019

Week 33 | A Glimpse into Pregnancy Depression

Here I am, at 12.09am, sitting at my dining table typing on my blog.

The rational thing to do is to sleep right now cos I have to wake up early the next day for an early gown fitting in the studio, and I will be bringing Tyler with me tomorrow since he's on school holidays. I've got tons of other work matters to attend to as well, but since it's the veryyyyy last of my public holiday (thank God for the Raya holidays!), I thought I should spare just a few minutes to do one of the things I love most.

Just like that, we are entering Week 33. 
Just like that, it's been almost 3 months since I last updated my blog!
Just like that, we are left with just a few weeks before our life changes again.

I'm gonna be honest, this time around I do worry a lot more. Compared to my first pregnancy with Tyler where I was a lot freer with a lot less commitments and responsibilities (ie: Tyler and The White Atelier), and when I was a lot more oblivious to how life will be with a newborn, it's no wonder I'm a lot more aware about how life truly IS going to change.

Thinking back, the early days with Tyler as a newborn and infant were challenging. The lack of sleep, c-section recovery, barely-there-to-just-enough milk supply, nipple cracks, etc though 4 years ago, are still fresh in my mind. And I had just one baby to take care of, no business to think about (just a blog to update and vlogs I attempted to make happen least I tried lol). And I also had a husband who had ample leaves and took a month off to be with me during the whole of confinement. Just how lucky was I?

This time though, it's going to be very different. I'm going to have a newborn with all the same challenges any post-partum mom goes through, plus a sticky toddler who needs to cuddle me and plaster his face next to mine to sleep every night, plus a business that's growing healthily and requires lots of attention due our personal one-to-one customer servicing (that's what happens when everything is customisable! every bride and every wedding is different). And this time, I don't have a husband who can take a whole month of leave to be with me- just a week at most since he doesn't travel for work so much anymore, hence the lack of leaves he can take.

Many nights while putting Tyler to bed, I find myself lying awake wondering how life will come to be soon. With Tyler sticking to me and his legs flying all over my body while sleeping (still does fly across my tummy even now!), how will it affect my c-section recovery?

Speaking of which, like the first pregnancy, I have Gestational Diabetes again this time. So my gynae has scheduled a c-section date for me in mid July (EDD is supposed to be 27 July). If Baby Dumpling decides not to arrive naturally anytime before mid July, that means it'll be c-section for me again. I honestly do not mind because I already know what to expect- everything from the whole procedure to the pain and recovery process. But a part of me as a woman does wish to try for a natural birth this time, because I know I can recover naturally a lot faster, and that means I'll be able to attend to my boys a lot quicker, get active and slim down sooner, and many more.

Can you already get a glimpse of what I ponder about on a daily basis? These are not even all :')

It's easy, and I mean really easy to fall trap into worrying and experiencing anxiety. During the start of my third trimester, I experienced a plunge in my energy levels and felt fatigue that no words could explain. It's like my first trimester fatigue but this time, it was coupled with a depressive feeling. 

This feeling lingered for a few weeks where I struggled to fall sleep, struggled to get out of bed, lacked motivation to do anything, didn't want social interactions with people, and all I wanted was just to sleep but I couldn't. I would close my eyes and flip back and forth on the bed and before I knew it, 1 hour was up and I still hadn't napped.

It was bothering me so badly that I googled for third trimester depression and found the symptoms scarily relatable (besides suicidal thoughts la), and I came to know that besides the widely discussed post-partum depression, there is also such a thing as pregnancy depression. 

But you know, no one really talks about these things openly and I can understand why. Pregnancy is supposed to be a happy thing. It's a blessing and a miracle, so why would I be feeling so sad and so miserable instead? One of the things I always do when I'm upset is to try putting my feelings into words to help myself understand my situation better, but at that point I couldn't even figure out why I was so sad. The only thing I could vaguely point out was that perhaps I was physically and mentally too exhausted, or that it's the change in hormones upon entering the third trimester that changed my emotions drastically.

So I took a day off and spent the day at home alone (Boon was at work and Tyler was at school and then his grandparents'), cried a lot, sporadically, sometimes in tears and sometimes in wails. Ordered food delivery, watched Working Moms and Beyonce's Homecoming on Netflix, napped, and did not touch any work at all cos Boon forbade me.

Just one day of shutting off from work, and one day of releasing my emotions freely and resting a lot (physically and mentally) turned out to be all I needed. After that day, I never felt those scary depressive feelings again, and I've been so thankful to have my spunk back again.

Thought of saving this topic for another day but you know how blog entries like this turns out. I'm glad to know that I'm actually ready to even talk about this in the open, because while I was experiencing it I didn't even think I was ever ready to open up about this. It's scary enough to experience it, and even scarier to know that there will be people who will judge you for feeling those feelings.

If you're a pregnant mama and is going though a rough patch mentally and emotionally seemingly without reason, do know that you're not alone. This hormonal change thing really is a b*tch and drives our bodies up and down without permission or reason. When that happens, take some time off to acknowledge those feelings, and feel free to let them out. Cry if you need to, eat if you want to, and binge watch Netflix if it takes your mind off those thoughts and feelings. Talk to your partner, people you trust, and reach out for help. Never ever feel too embarrassed to talk about it and never go through it alone. It could be a very short-lived phase that just needs some form of rest and release, so go and do what you need to to feel better :)

Having said all of that, as much as I'm aware that life is going to be different very soon and lots of challenges await, I also know that life will double up in love and joy. I know that Little Dumpling will bring a whole new meaning into our lives and family, and I know just how much Tyler is going to love and adore his new best friend and baby brother.

And I really can't wait to feel witness those precious moments right before my eyes.

Signing out,
Week 33.

Love, Careen.
This post is filed under PersonalPregnancyFamily

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