Brook Nates: Emerging from the Darkness of Postpartum Depression

At Medi-Share, we seek to come alongside individuals and families of all ages and stages of life, through the highest mountains and darkest valleys. Brook Nates trekked through a valley for a long time. She shared her experiences and advice with us in hopes of encouraging mothers with postpartum depression and those who love them.

In the fall of 2016, we took a family trip to Georgia to go apple picking. This is me, Brian (my husband), Brandon, Bryn, and Brycen… not pictured are our dogs, Bosco and Barkley.

Yes, we are that cheesy “B” family. It’s okay, you can laugh. We totally own our cheesiness.

I don’t know about you, but all my life the only thing I ever wanted was to be married and have babies. I wanted four children, a dog, and a white picket fence – the whole nine. I was going to stay home with my children and make sure they all had warm cookies waiting for them when they get home from school, sew all of their Halloween costumes, be on the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO), and live happily ever after.

I told you I was cheesy.

And guess what? My dream did come true!

I married a wonderful man, had three beautiful children, two dogs, and even the white picket fence. No joke. So, you may be wondering why I am even writing this. Well, let’s go back in time to four years ago.

There I was, sitting at the end of my hospital bed, holding my brand new baby boy, bags packed, waiting on my nurse to get the wheelchair… crying.

I felt feelings I had never felt before after having a baby. I wrote it off in my head as hormones. To make matters worse, when the nurse finally came with the wheelchair, she looked confused.

She barely said a word to me as she helped me down to my car. I managed to pull myself together before my husband could see me.

That was it – the beginning of my downward spiral.

That picture you see of Brycen and I was the last happy memory I can remember for almost two years. I look at that picture with joy and sadness all at the same time.

It started with this fog. It was almost as if I were watching myself live my own life. Day after day, just barely getting through. I was exhausted, but more exhausted than I remembered being with my other two babies. Sleep deprivation, I told myself. That is all.

Then, I started to feel overwhelmed all the time. I couldn’t figure out the whole mom-to-an-infant plus two other children routine. And I had to be a wife too – make dinner, take care of the house – it was all just too much and I didn’t know why.

Then, I started to feel like a failure.

I tried talking to my family and they reassured me this was all normal. “All moms feel like this right after having a baby, especially when you have other children.”

Then, something else hit me.

Women: You know when your husband gets on your nerves? I mean really, really gets on your nerves? Like when your husband just being in the room annoys you?

Yep, that happened, but multiply that feeling by a million.

Just his presence started to tick me off. So much so that I literally started to think those dark thoughts. I was that crazy girl that started plotting her own husband’s death. I never figured out how to do it without getting caught, though. Thank God! Brian is thankful too.

Things got much worse.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Brook Nates