Monday 8 July 2013

C4AC - Why have I chosen to support PANDA?

Hi everyone

If you missed my 1st post about can be found here and if you missed meeting my group members, you can still meet them here, here, here and here :)

So why have I chosen to support PANDA?

To answer this need to know a little more about me and my little monster :)
So here goes nothing!

(Note: Sorry in advance for the long post with no pictures to break it up :P)

Motherhood was everything I expected it to be, while at the same time being nothing like I expected it to be - I know, confusing right?!

Anyone who's been pregnant or is pregnant has probably daydreamed about what life will be like after your baby comes. For me it was simple, I would cuddle my baby, be the perfect mum, and breastfeeding would be a natural way I was going to bond with my baby.

I still don't really know why I was so obsessed with feeling like breastfeeding was the only way to bond with my new baby...maybe it was all the classes (hubby and I attended more than a few), or the media telling young mums that 'breast is best' etc. but, that was how I felt.

So, the little monster came along and he was beautiful and perfect. He latched on to feed like a champ! After day one, he needed formula as my milk hadn't come, by the end of our hospital stay, my milk still hadn't come. So after pumping numerous times a day, getting baby to try and feed before every bottle, I was only producing about 1ml of milk every 2 days...yep, I felt pathetic and like a failure. After 2 weeks of basically no increase in my milk production (and for those interested, I was also taking medication to increase my supply), the little monster decided to refuse to feed from the breast for the 1st time :(

I was devastated.

Then I was rushed to hospital, I had sever abdominal pain - I thought I was dying from some post pregnancy complication.

I wasn't.

But I did have gallstones and needed my gallbladder removed. I had, 3 days and nights separated from my baby (family did bring him in to visit though - but it want the same...), this was incredibly hard.

With just these 2 issues alone, I could have suffered from PND...But there was more to come.

I was such a lucky baby smiled, was extremely alert and was absolutely beautiful...but...he didn't sleep :(

Ok, so he did actually sleep, just not much.  So at 6 months, off we went to stay at a mother an baby unit - to see if anything was causing his sleeplessness.
I met a number of mothers in this unit suffering from PND, and who were having a much tougher time than I was, and we were all extremely lucky that facilities like this exist.

After an 8 day (and night) stay, the doctors told us that there was no medical reason for his sleeplessness, they helped me and my hubby out with some strategies on how to teach the little monster to self settle and off we went home.

The strategies we were taught were useful and beneficial. I felt like we were on the right track, but the little monster still was not sleeping through the night - and he didn't sleep much during the day! By the time he was 16 months old, I was at the end of my tether.

Motherhood was not fun! Yes, I loved my baby (there was no question of that!), but I just didn't have the energy to interact with him the way I wanted to :(

So off we went for another stay at a mother and baby unit (a different unit to the last visit). This stay was only 5 days, and they were a hard 5 days...but when we came home, the little monster was sleeping (for the 1st time in his life!)

We implemented the strategies that were learnt during our stay and...

7 months later we are a very well rested family (most of the time :P)

I was formally diagnosed with mild PND when the little monster was 16 months old.
I have had help to get better and I know I am extremely lucky to have had lots of family support throughout the little monsters life :)

I didn't need the help of an organisation like PANDA, but I'm glad that this wonderful organisation is out there for the mothers and families who do need there support.


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