I have never been a huge fan of therapy. Please do not be offended but I never really understood how I could benefit from telling a complete stranger about my problems while lying on his couch, that is what friends are for right?
One day my whole perspective changed and life got tough, really tough. I remember the day like it was yesterday. My husband and I had just brought our new-born baby girl home and life couldn’t seem to get any more picture perfect. Sure, my husband and I had already experienced our first 2 of many sleepless nights post baby and even had our first “baby” argument in the hospital but it was going to be okay. I had this all figured out.
The day we brought our baby girl home was a rainy Friday and because our daughter had come home a few days earlier we hadn’t properly installed the car seat (mistake number 1). As we journeyed to take our bright eyed bundle of joy home she cried her heart out due to what I am sure was extreme discomfort. Sure, it wasn’t the pleasant heart-filled ride home that we had anticipated (and neither was my labour) but this wasn’t anything new.
When we finally arrived home we gave our daughter a tour of her first home and soon she fell asleep. Because my husband and I both had not been able to spend much time together alone during my hospital stay we decided to cosy up on the couch until we noticed our house was a mess. We instantly went into superhero mode and began to clean up the house that we had left days earlier in a panic. After about an hour of finally getting our home back into one piece our baby girl woke up. Great.
A few hours had passed by of snuggling and playing with our baby and my husband and I both had realized we had not eaten yet, I agreed to get up and cook dinner but quite frankly after I had finished cooking I didn’t even have the energy to eat. My baby girl had begun to cry hysterically and because I was nursing I knew that only meant one thing, she was hungry. I attempted to eat as I nursed but my baby girl was getting frustrated with me and I unashamedly could admit I was getting frustrated too.
I got up and went to the bathroom and just sat there, it was just day one and already I felt my superpowers dwindling away. I remembered the doctors warning me about postpartum depression but I didn’t quite feel like I had gotten to that point; however, I did realize I needed to talk to someone and quick.
I called one of my closest friends who also had small kids and began to vent and while she fully understood the crazy life of having a new-born I just didn’t feel like she understood how I was so full of joy but so full of sadness at the same time. Being the googler I was, I hopped online and found an in home therapist (yes in home). After scheduling an appointment, she came over two days later and it changed my life. Not only did she allow me to de-stress with no judgement she even played with my baby girl to give me a break while my husband slept.
Everything I thought I knew about therapy went out of the window and that day I made a new friend. I still remember Liz. I was so excited week by week when Liz came by because I knew I would have the chance to scream, cry, laugh and relax all within an hour and it was great. I needed it. Imagine that.
As a mom I think we all get to a point where we think we can handle the world on our own but I will never forget the best advice Liz ever gave me, “it’s okay to not be okay it’s just not okay to stay that way“. I take that mantra with me to this day because I realize in order to take care of my daughter and my husband I must first take care of myself and if that means therapy then I’m going to therapy. So yes, my 3 day old newborn did send me to therapy but it’s the best thing she could have ever done for me and my family.