In my last article, I shared my feelings on postpartum depression. Mercifully my foray through the darkness was brief. My dark, twisted sense of humour is usually enough to make light of any situation; normally, I can find hilarity in the smallest of things. Let it be said though, the amusement of wanting to slam your head in the cupboard door repeatedly, every hour, eventually grows thin. After doing a little research, I learned that a very high percentage of women experience postpartum depression, particularly in the first few weeks following birth. It’s a hormonal imbalance, which I never would have believed to be true. But I get it now. Lesson learned. It’s only after we’ve met the monsters that we grow fearful of the dark.
Incidentally, after hearing my birth story, a close friend of mine (who happens to be male), winced in horror and declared: “I would liken it to post-traumatic stress. I mean really… if you got hit by a semi, and your genitalia got severely mangled, would you not be in shock? I would say it’s pretty much the same thing. Only in this case, once it was all over, you were handed a baby.” Fair point. Perhaps I fell upon the path where postpartum depression and post-traumatic stress collide.
Here’s what I do know: Being in the presence of my children humbly reminds me of how far we drift from our divinity, how our innocence quietly slips away without our noticing, how we forgot what’s truly important, and how we crumble at the feet of true beauty. Could it be that our children grant us an all-access pass to glimpsing eternity? I’d like to think that. I think in staring at a newborn, we catch a glimpse of what we’ve lost… a reflection of what was once ours. We see our innocence as was intended, and it brings us to our knees. God’s so close, it knocks the air right out of you.
I think we need to find that purity again, that holy zone, and hold on to it for dear life. It’s what allows us to share when we’re hurting, and open our hearts to others in return. This is what I want to teach our children: I want them to grab hold of their beautiful life and own it — the wonder, the pain, the joy, the sorrows, the trials — all of it. I need them to know it’s a package deal. I want them to know that their faith will carry them through anything, and they’ll come out on the other side stronger, with more compassion for others, more love for themselves, for others, for the world. Amen.
Here forthwith, are things you think we should talk about more often. Part 2
People’s “ists.” As in racist, sexist, ageist, homophobic. These are real, clear issues shared by many, all with a direct line to causing seriously bad behaviours and attitudes amongst people. When comments are made, these situations become taboo to acknowledge; nobody wants to judge. I think we should talk more openly and try to correct these “ists.”
How we feel about each other. I think it would be amazing to break down the “awkward” barriers and be able to be open with each other about how we really feel.
Sex. It’s the cornerstone of every species’ existence, yet perceived as a taboo topic amongst family.
Grief. It’s impossible to put to words but it has to come out because it poisons your soul if you don’t.
How we REALLY feel.
How unhappy we can be with so much — what is wrong with the world?
Lately I am learning about vulnerability and shame. How we are all trying to hide our shame and how our egos and what the “Joneses” are up to is keeping us from our true selves. It’s a journey I’m on, and would love to talk more about it. Millions of books have been sold on it, yet my “close” friends would think I’m crazy to talk about this. Ego and fear keep this subject to a minimum, in my world anyway.
Vaccinations for children.
How we really feel inside. I think most of the time we pretend we are OK, so that others around us feel comfortable.
I think we are too afraid to ask for what we want. Either we are too polite or don’t want to hurt feelings or look greedy. I’m not sure. Even with our life partners, I think we are sometimes too apologetic in asking for what we want or need. And yes, that includes s-e-x.
The stress that parenting a teen has on your marriage.
Paranormal activities, specifically those people who see energy around them and can communicate with those who have crossed over.
Why women have such low confidence, and let jealousy come between us and other women. We need to figure this one out, and then figure out how to instil confidence and self-love in our children!
Failure. What true happiness is. This is a hard one. I don’t feel open enough to answer it honestly.
I am very personal and shy. But as a new mom, and young wife, there are so many questions I wish I had the courage to ask someone who is older and wiser. I wish I were able to share my heart without worrying about what people think.
Our role as a rich country in helping those less fortunate. This is a humanitarian issue… we don’t talk about it enough. In fact, ever. I don’t think fortunate people should feel guilty, however, we need to find more ways to distribute and give to those who don’t have anything. How is it that some don’t have a glass of water to drink, and yet we fill our bathtubs every night? How can our world of plenty have so many with nothing? Why don’t we talk about it? Instead we’re preoccupied with who got kicked off “Survivor,” or which girl “The Bachelor” picked in the end. It isn’t right. It’s not OK. We need to start talking about this. †