I need to be honest with you. It’s been two weeks and two days since Kingston was born. Most days I don’t know what day it is. Most days I wonder if I have really done this before, raised two other babies. Most days I look in the mirror and I want to cry. My hair is a mess; showering is now a luxury. I’m pale and look tired. Like bone-deep tired. The baby blues are morphing into full blown “I-don’t-know-if-I-can-handle-this-I’m-an-ugly-terrible-person” type shit. My two older kids have been with their dads a lot, which has proven more harmful than helpful. Their absence only feeds the fire (I am in fact a bad mother). I’m writing this knowing much of what I said is crazy, however, it is also very real and very true. Does that make sense to you? If you’ve ever been depressed it does. If you’ve ever suffered from anxiety it does. You probably think it’s helpful to remind me, “But you have so much to be excited about. So much to be happy about.” If that’s what you want to say to me, please just don’t say anything at all. I know about all of my successes, I do. I know what a gift my son is, I see and feel it every day, but this cloud is dark and heavy. I know – I just PUBLISHED A BOOK! Holy shit, it’s still crazy to say that, but it’s also something that requires my time and energy and focus and I have zero to spare.
Thank you for letting me get that out and out of the way. Postpartum depression is real. Know that and know that it doesn’t make women or mothers bad. I am not bad. I am wounded and healing. I am trying to be a woman again, a person and writer again. I’m trying to get my groove back. Sometimes I just need to talk/write it out.
I realized that in all of the buzz past few weeks brought, I failed to mention two rejections – I did not win (or even come close) to the Button Poetry Chapbook prize and Qu Literary Journal rejected me…again. Oh well. The bright side is – the chapbook I submitted to Button, This is The Way We Break Our Bones is free to move on, perhaps becoming my second book. Would you read it?
Also, keep those #tiptoeandwhisperfan selfies coming! They are the sunshine in my days!