Dear Cassidy of 2 months ago
Hey Cassidy of 2 months ago,
Baby Nadia is 2.5 months old now and is the best. Truly. The hormonal mood swings are lying to you.
You’re going to cry a whole lot over the next few weeks. You’ll feel anxious, and angry, and sad, and feel like this was a mistake. You’ll look at your baby and wonder what you’ve done. You’ll go on walks to try and clear the clouds in your head (and also to try and physically heal), and they’ll sometimes work (temporarily). You’ll have wonderful people around you to help you out, and as grateful as you are, you’ll still feel sad.
That sadness sucks. It’s irrational. You’ve got such a good baby who eats well, and sleeps (relatively) well, and loves to kick literally all day long like a little baby Mia Hamm. Even when she cries, she’s cute. But the hormones are lying to you and telling you to be sad anyway.
Finally, after a few weeks of trying therapy and a support group, your doctor is going to tell you “enough is enough” and prescribe you some antidepressants to try and get you out of the funk. You’re going to be nervous about it, but several of your friends give you stories of their experiences about how helpful they are at regulating your feelings. And then, coincidentally, the day you pick them up from the pharmacy… the clouds will clear. You’ll never actually need to take the pills (at least we haven’t so far, heh). The sadness just… stops, and you’ll suddenly enjoy hanging out with the baby.
It’s super weird how it happens. Truly you just suddenly feel like yourself again, 2 days after crying to the doctor at the 6-week checkup. Your shows will be funny again, and you like playing Zelda again, and your appetite comes back, and you actually clean your house (at least a little, you have a baby to take care of). Holding the baby is suddenly a joy, rather than a burden. Instead of thinking about how daunting it is to have this human around forever, now you’ll think, “we’ll cross tough bridges when we get there,” and just enjoy the time now.
Annnnnd then your breastmilk dries up, and you get your first period since the baby, and you’ll be sad all over again. You’ll go back on your walks, you’ll cry the whole time, and you’ll wake up each day almost angry that you can’t kick these feelings out of your system. But just make it through that for a couple weeks, and you’ll be okay again.
We’re at the 2.5 month mark now. Nadia slept 10 WHOLE HOURS last night. She’s started to laugh when you make silly faces at her, and she’s guzzling formula like a tank. She is so cuddly and loves it when you read books to her. She coos a ton and it almost sounds like she’s saying “I love you” back, and we’re just going to pretend that’s on purpose.
You can make it through, Cassidy of 2 months ago. A lot of people tell you that parenthood is hard forever, and it is. It’s unreal how hard it is. But those hormone swings (and impossible sleep patterns) make it harder than ever. It gets easier, and you get braver. You can do it. You can do it. You can do it.