I am not a trained professional in Psychology or Mental health. My intention to share my story is merely to raise awareness among people and the stigma attached to it. Please consult a professional if you go through depression, anxiety, or any mental illness.
Relapse: The Sticky Monster
If you can recollect from my last chapter, I had mentioned about my first memory of having intrusive thoughts while I was in Jammu & Kashmir.
During my mid-pregnancy I had these strange disturbing patterns coming on & off with some OCD symptoms, like checking if the door is locked, the gas is switched off, important appliances are off, etc..along with excessive distolerence towards dirt or any dirty smell. But for me OCD at that time was altogether a new term again. I din’t even knew there is something called as ‘ OCD’ which is a mental disorder. I just thought it to be some ‘ funny weirdly unpleasant genetic kidda ‘ running in my family & ignored it. As I had been seeing my family members doing certain rituals & some irrational weird compulsions since my childhood. I was used to seeing it all.
As my pregnancy was progressing ,I often started getting more emotional & sad frequently. It occurred to me for the first time , could it be the same depressive feelings trying to bounce back? Thinking of it would make me panic. Hence, I decided to take good care of my emotional well-being by keeping myself busy. God forbidden, if my condition would have went out of control this time. I knew I had no other option then seeing a doctor, as I was pregnant.
Thankfully nothing such happened. I was just a bit emotional more often , but I could see a rise in my OCD patterns as my delivery date was approaching. I started double checking everything & worrying excessively. Of course , as it was my first delivery ,which at that time I guess is quite normal for many mothers , going through this phase, I believed.
As my due date approached ,I got admitted on doctors content a day before my due date. Tough I was more keen to have a normal delivery ,I thought it’s sensible to keep both possibilities flexible. Failing to get natural labour pains ,I was induced to get labour pains. And guess what ,I was not at all prepared for this shit , very proudly I have being telling everyone that I was wanting to have a normal delivery. Without knowing the seriousness of unbearable pain that comes with it.
After going through this harrowing prolonged labour pains followed by breathlessness & the stress of having to push it hard with every breath you took ,for a normal delivery,I almost thought I would die that night. Remembering all the grannies & mummies in the world including mine , who must have gone through this pain so often ,I salute them.
Finally taking a sigh of relief after my sweetheart was out & started crying. I was completely drained to even enjoy the site of looking at my baby.
When physically the life is squeezed out of you , you would atleast expect your balanced mind to be supportive to guide you further to keep up your spirits high, while you recover. But little did this new mother knew that the brunt of post – delivery like Hormornal imbalance , sleepless nights to come , erratic schedule with having a new member to look upon, who is completely dependent on you, would start taking a toll on this genetically predisposed mind which is already vulnerable to all kinds of mental disorders running in my family.
8 days after getting discharged from the hospital I reached my home town to start my new life as a mother to a newly born baby. Before I could settle down in my room ,with my new schedule of feeding ,bathing the baby & adjusting with the sleeping timings, I had started getting bouts of emotions , some filled with anger , some with intensely depressing feelings.
Unknowingly I had started acting upon it, by getting cranky for small thinks ,holding grudges for small matters on my parents , mixed up with old arguments. I started getting extremely emotional & upset for minor things.
While going through all this, I dint really realize back then, that this was the onset of the Relapse , as the very first time I had depression ,it started very severely on the first day itself, making me feel hollow inside. This time the symptoms were completely different. I was just more frustrated & emotional with the kind mood swings you usually get during periods.
Gradually when I started losing interest in everything ,I lost my appetite too, with crying nights. I was assured that it’s the same depression , the shadow of that dreadful monster , which have already entered my mind so smartly to haunt me the second time, when all my hands & resources to make me feel back to normal were tied up because of this new responsibility. Thinking of this , my world started crumbling down again, giving me shivers down my spine…….
To be continued….