| by Sol Lagunas | No comments

Post-Partum Depression: Part III

Take a minute to catch up on my Post-Partum Depression series blog posts. Part I here and Part II here!

I sent my midwife an email, asking her to meet with me. Unfortunately the communication between mothers and midwives is not quick. I was in a very serious situation and I needed help now! I reached out to an RN assistant of the birthing center and she text me back quickly.

“Stephanie, I need to see Corinne, can you help me with setting up an appointment?” her reply was prompt, “of course mija, when are you available.” I met with Corinne the following week.

Weight Lifted

I brought my son with me since I wanted my midwife, Corinne, to see him. She was delighted to see both of us. Then the difficult questions started. “So Marisol, how are you? How is motherhood treating you?” I looked at her and she knew right away. My eyes got watery and I started crying. “It is ok honey, tell me what is going on.” I vented to her and I was extremely honest. We were both crying by the end of our conversation. She had me fill out a screening tool for post partum depression (PPD).

This tool is called Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). I cannot explain the feelings going on in my head when I saw this tool. I filled it out, 6 weeks after having my son. When I went back in August, 13 weeks post-partum, I felt as if I was looking at a different questionnaire. All the questions suddenly applied to me. After looking at my responses she determined that I had Mild PPD.

Treatment & Diagnosis

Mild PPD was scary to me. My mother suffers from Depression and she struggled a lot with her diagnosis. I did not want the same for me. Corinne re-assured me that seeking help was the best decision I made. She stated, “some people only need to seek help to feel better.” She advised me to take an anti-depressant that would help me get over my slump. I did not want medication. She knew that, “I understand that you don’t want this, but this can help you feel better.” She also said that anti-depressants take 6-8 weeks to go into effect. I would have to be on this anti-depressant for a at least year.

She prescribed me Zoloft 50mg PO daily. She advised me to seek counseling and also to decrease my work hours. I was working 16-hr shifts and she was extremely upset about that.

Recovery

Don’t tell my midwife this if you see her.

I picked up the medicine at Walgreens and took it for 2 days. I was not committed to take it and I don’t advice anyone to do this. After seeing Corinne, I felt weight lifted off my shoulders. I felt stronger and with more will power. Side note: anti-depressants can cause dependability. Meaning, more than likely I would be on Zoloft for the rest of my life. I did not want that at all.

My husband and I planned a family trip to Gurnee, IL and that was when my recovery started. Time away from work and home. I focused on my family, enjoying them and myself. When I went back to work I asked to switch my shifts to 8-hr days. My husband also decreased his work hours. I sought counseling and all of this combined made a huge difference in my life. I asked for help when I needed and I prioritized myself over everything

Updates On PPD

I never followed up with Corinne after this phase. I felt embarrassed to say I had PPD, althought I should not be. Embarrased because I let this illness get the best of me. I consider myself a strong woman and felt defeated the day I got diagnosed with PPD.

Today I am living my best life. I am thankful for my husband, without him I would have not seeked help. As mentioned in my previous blog, I use different methods to take care of my mental health. I recognize the warning signs and I give myself a time out.

“Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t”—​Rikki Rogers

This series is dedicated to my husband Rodrigo, because during this time he was my biggest strength. To my children because they are my motivation to get up and live another day. I love and thank God for all of you!!

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