Anxiety is not a nice thing to go through especially when you have a new baby, you know you have to leave the house for the babies’ sake but what happens when you physically can’t walk out the front door?
I’ve been in this situation not long after my first son was born; it made me physically sick to even contemplate leaving the house!
I had friends and family wanting to see my new baby and calling over to see us but I couldn’t even let them inside the house, I would hide in my bedroom and pray my son wouldn’t cry or make a noise and let them know I was home. I would hide and hope they would go away, I even resorted to sticking a note on my front door saying mother and baby resting so I didn’t have to speak to anyone!
I don’t know what had happened, that bright and bubbly girl who loved life so much had completely disappeared, never to return, or so I thought.
I was a complete mess for about the first 6 months of my sons life I couldn’t go anywhere, I had pushed all of my friends I didn’t mean to, I missed them terribly but I just couldn’t talk to them or let them know something was wrong! I couldn’t function properly my husband would try to get me out of the house and whenever he succeeded it was only for a short walk around the block sometimes to the end of the street or to sit on the front step, but it felt like I was going to die every single time.
My heart would race, I wouldn’t be able to catch my breath, my chest was so tight it felt like my heart was going to burst through it, I couldn’t focus properly my eyes felt like they were moving too fast looking for any kind of danger or something, anything, to justify why I felt like this but every single time once I had done it I would get home and I would be okay, it hadn’t been so bad, the sky hadn’t fallen in on me, I didn’t get hit by a car, my son was safe in his pram, I was OK!!!
And you know what, each time it got easier and easier and thanks to my husband I finally got the professional help I so desperately needed. I was prescribed medication, I saw a counselor weekly and it kept getting easier until I could finally leave the house without having a panic attack. I could do the groceries without freaking out, I could walk out my front door again and not be afraid I was going to die!
If it wasn’t for my husband’s love and support I don’t think I would have ever beaten this!
I still struggle sometimes but I have the tools to help me deal with the anxiety and panic when it arises. I still worry if my anxiety has had an effect on my son as he is very shy and anxious at times around other kids and I can’t help but blame myself for this.
I wish that depression and anxiety weren’t such taboo topics, it is such a common illness and many people will experience it at some point in their lives. We need to be more open about it and know that it is treatable that you’re not alone and you don’t have to suffer in silence!
I hope by sharing my story it will help others experiencing anxiety get the help they deserve, you can beat this!