Thursday, 24 August 2017

When Depression Bites

Illness has struck the Mummy Trials house hold. Illness and a touch of the blues.

For the past few days, all three boys have been suffering with snotty noses and sore throats. Soft pillows of yellow slime erupt from the baby's face with every sneeze (and there are lots of them). They dribble down his face onto his lip and he grizzles sadly. His cheeks are red, hot and unhappy. He is dozy, napping lots (yay! But will he sleep at night? Remains to be seen) and in need of lots of cuddles. Smiles still come, but they are sleepy ones. 

The older one sneezes less, with less volcanic eruptions spewing down his face. Instead, he constantly sniffs, to the point I worry his brain might implode with the effort he puts into it. All this to avoid blowing his nose....

Still, he has no temperature and is coping relatively well. 6 years worth of fighting colds gives him the edge over his brother on this front.

The other half, usually a solider, has called in sick to work (!!) No man flu for this guy- oh no, he usually goes to work come hell or high water.

He sits in our bed, spread out all over my pillows too. I have to remind myself he is poorly and cannot help himself (but I've just changed the bed before I climb in) He throat is raw and he is very tired. I hate seeing him like this. He's slept most of the time, switching between feeling freezing and boiling, throwing the covers off and diving back under them. Throat sprays, sudafed, paracetamol- I place them next to the bed with some orange juice and periodically come up to see what I can do. 

So I've been holding the fort up until now. It's been hard- the baby wakes up with a face full of snot and can't get back to sleep. The 6 year old wakes up, from the baby or because he's wet the bed, and can't get back to sleep. My days have started early recently. Really early. 3am early. 

I put the blues down to this at first. Sleep deprivation is a known factor in poor mood. I'm tired, is all. I'll be fine I tell myself. Just sleep. 

So I wake up again after a good nights sleep (ish) only to find...nope, still feeling like poo. Maybe I'm getting ill too? 

That theory seemed to have some merit earlier, when I took to my bed (as soon as OH was well enough to get out of it for a short period), head pounding and body feeling run down. But 2 hours later, I wake up and I can function again. But still, I feel like poo.

To put it into context, I don't mean poo as in mildly fed up, over stretched and like my life revolves around laundry. I don't mean normal mum stuff. 

I mean I lay in my bed at night, terrified to close my eyes encase one of my babies stops breathing. I check both kids on the monitors constantly and even rush in to the 6 year old to check he's breathing. I hug the covers, imagining horrible scenarios of them dying and being unable to save them. The nightmares move on to my OH...my mum...my sister....my nan.

I scold myself in my mind all day for not playing with the kids enough. I haven't provided enough stimulation for the baby, or played with the 6 year old enough. I try to set aside time for them both, but the truth is I want space. The 6 year old is at such an annoying stage. I've been warned ages 6-10 is hard work. I tell myself if I was his biological mother it wouldn't be as hard, but from talking to other mums I'm not sure that is true. Still, I could do better. Poor thing, to have me as his mum. 

When I walk past the mirror in my bra and pants I avert my eyes. I has such high hopes I'd become skinny with the breast feeding, but it never happened. I think to myself I should stop eating rubbish- but then lunch comes and I'm starving and I have no time so I grab a bag of crisp. Should have gone for the fruit, I scold myself. And I keep thinking this all day, until I reach for the chocolate out of comfort. It's a vicious cycle.

This is me at my worst. And why am I like this? I begin to think my antidepressants aren't working. No bashing- my dad died suddenly 2 years ago and my mum has terminal cancer. I'm think I'm allowed a bit of help.

Have I suddenly lowered the dose? Without realising? No, I've checked. This isn't just sleep deprivation any more. 

Is it the fact I lost a potential job this week? I had such a great interview and was apparently the strongest candidate- but alas, the fact I can't work weekends ended our dreams of being financial more stable. Is it the business I'm trying to start up? Is it the pressure?

And then it happens. My period. It's almost a relief to know- at least I'm not mad. And now at last, I can start my pill again. 
 
I guess for some people this event isn't that bad. For me, its the horrendous pit of depression, filled with terror and paranoia. It's overwhelming fear. It's pain and depression all at once. Such pain- pain that's caused me to faint before now. And sleep deprivation and summer holiday trials just act as a catalyst.

Fingers crossed the new week brings relief, and that the coming months get easier. I can't imagine life without the option of the pill.  

 



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