Every parent has a degree of anxiety about their children and I am no different. It begins when they are in your tummy, then they are born, then they start to move, school, teenage years and I’m sure right into adult hood. This is all normal. You care unconditionally about your child/children so it is excepted for you to feel a little anxious about their well being.
However I live and have lived with daily anxiety since my teens. When I discovered I was to become a mum I was nervous it would rare its head again but I was pleasantly surprised when my usual symptoms subsided-all those good pregnancy hormones did their job!
I stayed on low levels of medication throughout my pregnancies and feeding as recommended by the doctor and I knew this was right for me too.
On both babies those first few months I felt fine, completely sleep deprived but very contended and calm. It was around the 3/4 month mark on both I started to struggle. I’d feel familiar panicky symptoms, I’d overthink things and get completely overwhelmed.
The more the years go on, the more I recognise these days/hours/periods of time but as a first time mum that was doing semi ok I decided to take action and went to speak with someone which I have written about previously. I met a fantastic councillor through Nurture who I will always refer back to when I need to check in on life. I returned to her for just a couple of sessions after I miscarried in between having the boys and it helped me immensely to take stock of my thoughts and feelings.
With my second child, the sleep deprivation was hightened. If I thought I was tired before this was on another level as all the reserves are gone. With the reserves gone, managing the feelings of anxiety that can come flooding in became a little less manageable at times but somehow I just muddled through. I put new strategies in place now that life was busier and on most days I come out the other side.
It is something I live with daily and I worry my eldest in recent months he picked up on some of my behaviours and will perhaps adopt some of my bad traits but despite him being almost 4 we talk to him like a human and that seems to help.
A lot of the above mums are dealing with during periods in parenthood but unfortunately my head makes me work every day to be calm, be happy and be ok with just being ok. Even writing this post is hard because I know how lucky I am, I project a life of happiness because I am happy but the daily reality is with this I struggle, I’m learning and evolving with this almost 20 years later but I felt this week it was important to highlight the realities and be ok to put it into the public domain too.