Something Personal

So this monologue came up in my Facebook memories this week and (though it’s long!) it is just as relevant to me now as it was two years ago. I want to share it with you now:

This is gonna be a long post and deeply personal, but I feel like much of this needs to be said. Bear with me if you want, but skip ahead if you don’t. I am dismissing negativity at this point.

2016 could be called, at best, a year of transition for me. And you know what? I spent most of it just aggressively hating myself.

I didn’t start the year in a good place. I had (and am still even now recovering from) really severe post-partum depression and post-partum anxiety. I couldn’t even drive somewhere without having a panic attack or throwing up from anxiety. I felt severely disconnected from my child. I neglected pretty much everything and everyone. I was angry and lashed out randomly. I cried too much and most of the time I couldn’t explain why. I felt a lot of pressure from all around me. Pressure because I did not breastfeed my son. Pressure because I was heavier then I have ever been in my life. Pressure because I could hardly keep up with my own child, let alone my husband or my family or my home or anything else. My self-loathing was intense, and all-consuming.

All this left me with nothing but hate. I hated myself because I was heavy and nothing I would do could fix it. I hated myself for letting Logan cry too long sometimes, and easily passing him off to anyone who wanted him. I hated that I couldn’t be around people who I cared about with panic attacks. I hated that I couldn’t just “love” this post-baby body, or be proud with what I had done. I hated myself for being unable to just be happy, when Drew and I miraculously had this beautiful little boy after trying for years of our marriage, and a diagnosis that it probably wouldn’t happen. I hated losing aspects of myself that I wasn’t ready to lose, and being unable to embrace the things the new things I had become. I hated that I couldn’t even keep my house clean, and my husband always seemed disappointed in me. I hated myself because I felt like no one totally trusted me to be alone with my son, even me some days. I felt that no one really wanted me or needed me, not even my son. I had honestly not ever been so miserable.

(As an aside, if anyone reading is struggling with postpartum, or even struggling with anxiety and depression while still pregnant like I did, please please PLEASE reach out to me. I understand what it feels like, and I want to help in any way I can. No one deserves to feel alone.)

I have lived with this struggle for over a year, telling only a precious few. But for some reason, I don’t feel like I should be quiet about it anymore. Not if this can help someone else.

I have done a lot of thinking in these past two weeks of 2017. I have made a lot of progress in my recovery, and I don’t want to see it backslide. I don’t want to feel these feelings. So I have put together a list of words that I want to use to describe my 2017.

Create. Transform. Brave. Happy.

The world fell apart around me last year. I am not going to let it continue. This is me trying to be brave. This is me trying to tell the truth about my life, even when it is scary because I have learned that there can be beauty in that too. I will transform myself, body, mind, and soul into the person that I want to be. I am going to be the best mom I can be. I am going to make art and write stories and find the time for the things that I used to love.

I suppose it means that 2017 is a year for transition as well. But I want it to be better, and I want it to make me better too.”

Me and my son, right around the time this was written

You may be asking yourself why I am share this with you. The reason is that THIS was the headspace I was in when I started getting into Pinup. And it also reveals an important topic that you will probably hear me talk about a lot. That is Postpartum Depression and Anxiety. In fact, it is my great ambition this year is start working and advocating for woman who suffer with this.

I thought this would be a good starting place for the week. I’m planning on going a little more in depth about all of these topics over my next few posts, but I also knew that it would be easy for someone to read what I’m writing and say “What makes her think she knows what I’m going through?” I really felt that I needed to bear my soul to you all a little first. I hope that if you are here right now, you are willing to go on this journey with me. I am passionate about this, and I really want to help other moms who had a hard time transitioning like I did.

Cheers and Love to you,

Genna XOXO

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