On being gracious (to yourself)

I have answered the same 8 questions about postnatal depression at least a dozen times. They have to give out the questionnaire every time they see you or your newborn for liability reasons. One of the items on the inventory keeps popping into my mind this week. “Things have been getting on top of me” to which I agree by checking the box that says, “Yes sometimes I haven’t been coping as well as usual.” Ya think? I’m not actually sure how one would go about not letting things get on top of them with a new baby.

Today I checked on Adelaide after an unusually long nap to find that she had removed her diaper and left a couple piles and a puddle on the carpet. This was the 3rd ‘potty on the floor’ incident of the week. She is sensitive to disapproval and cried when I seemed less than thrilled. The sound of her crying scared Louis and he joined in. Tylenol, caffeine and water were no match for the ensuing headache…which is still going strong. And yes, maybe I hid in the basement for a few minutes when Grant finally got home from work. And yes,sometimes I haven’t been coping as well as usual.
Yesterday, I glanced at myself in the mirror and noticed a dark purple circular mark on my chin. I dabbed at it with a wash cloth to no avail. Then I recalled that earlier in the day I was zoning out while nursing Louis and fiddling with his Soothie pacifier absentmindedly. To my sleepy amusement I discovered that I could make it stick to my face if I squeezed it just right by creating a suction cup effect. Now I have a pacifier shaped hickey on my face that has barely faded after a day and a half. Fortunately I haven’t really been out of the house since the pacifier incident and come to think of it I haven’t had much of a chance to shower, pick up the clothes on the bedroom floor or the do the dishes for that matter. I’ve tried to take some time to write but when I looked back at what I tapped out with my single free hand it was all disjointed and confusing.  I guess I can safely say ‘things have been getting on top of me’
Pregnancy took a toll on my body and my weight is not where I’d like it. I was doing so well on a strict Slow Carb diet for the past month and losing a lot of weight. Until last week when I made a few exceptions for my birthday, then for my anniversary, then for the fun of it, then because it’s so delicious, then because I’m too tired to care. Speaking of which, I could really go for a chocolate pastry… I guess I haven’t been coping as well as usual.
Fortunately I know that Depression is a liar. Depression wants everyone to think they are the only one drowning but I know the truth- that everyone has been there…there as in here, here as in a pacifier hickey on your face and a chocolate pastry on your mind (or whatever the case may be for you). I’m working on being gracious to myself, and to you… because let’s face it, all of us could probably be coping a little better than we are.

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