The weeks prior to the first intake at my psychiatrist were though. All the care for my baby was done by my boyfriend. With this, I really mean all the care for the baby both during the day and during the night. Every now and then I gave her the bottle but even though she was now bottle fed, it was still difficult for me to feed her. Apparently, the breastfeeding period had hit me hard enough that even bottle feeding my baby was causing panic attacks. Looking back, I can see how mentally distressed I was that I couldn’t even feed my own baby.
For my boyfriend, who was now fulltime taking care of his little girl and me, this was also very hard. While he enjoyed taking care of his baby, he saw his girlfriend sink further and further. I could feel this happening but I was unable to stop it. I had very bad anxiety and felt very guilty towards my boyfriend and the little one. I felt not feel any bond with her. I felt like I had to take care of her but I could not make my body do it. It was weird not being able to feed her while I had no difficulty changes a very full diaper. I actually somewhat enjoyed changing her diapers. Maybe it was because I could finally use the cute cloth diapers I bought a while ago. Also bathing and dressing her I did not mind doing. These are very clear signs that somewhere during the breastfeeding period something went very wrong.
While I waited for mental help, I saw my pelvic floor physiotherapist often. With her help, I could do exercises for the recovery of my pelvic floor. With a week I no longer had incontinence and after a few weeks, I was able to walk again without pain and could even turn in bed without it being painful. After two months I could even workout again. I have always done a lot of weight lifting but towards the end of the pregnancy, this was no longer possible. When I started lifting again, muscle memory kicked in and soon my strength was returning. This also helped for my mental well being.
Before I always thought that people who are depressed should just work out more. Maybe I was a little naive. All I knew was that working out makes your body produces endorphins and endorphins make you happy. This should help people who are suffering from depression. Now I know better. Exercising can indeed make you feel better when you are a little down. When you are severely depressed working out does not help with your mental well being. I have always been very disciplined. Also when I was severely depressed, I worked out twice a week. Only now I did not feel better after my workout. I did like the fact that my body was recovering so well after the delivery of my baby.
Here you can read more about the first consultation with my psychiatrist.