by Natasha Stewart
They say there is a silver lining to everything and PND is no exception. Living within PND is brutal, unfair and soul destroying. There were causalities, there were tears and words were used as weapons. There was intense fear that I would never recover or feel the full blown love for my children again that I knew existed. I missed and longed for those feelings and emotions that PND had depleted me of. For a mother to be rendered incapable of feeling her true emotions towards her family because the black cloud of PND is smothering her is just torture, but at some point a light splinters in. If you can muster the energy to catch it, it will offer a path to follow to escape the darkness.
In hindsight, I can see that PND was one of my greatest teachers and I do not wish the experience away. It revealed who was real in my life and who wasn’t. Not everyone in my life knew how to deal with me, but despite the fog I could still see who tried and those simple gestures were seared into my heart. It taught me who to put my energy into and how to say no.
Through the process of getting better I learned that putting myself first was actually putting my children first. Self-care is not a dirty word. By taking some time out to invest in my own well being I was much more capable of enduring my beautiful children’s antics. Self-care didn’t have to be anything of enormous lengths, sometimes it was just stepping outside and taking a moment to have a green tea and breathe.
During PND I learned the power of exercise. Exercise is now forever a constant in my life as it gives me strength, endurance and insight. Our body releases endorphins during exercise, which trigger a positive feeling in the body and it therefore instantly elevates mood. Regular exercise reduces stress, wards off anxiety and depression, improves sleep. It’s my go-to coping strategy in stressful times and there is nothing that I can’t tackle after running it out on the treadmill or punching the crap out of it in boxing.
On reflection, I do not regret PND. I am grateful for it. For after the fire had burnt me to the ground I grew from it stronger, more balanced and a more compassionate mother, wife, friend, daughter, and sister. I learned to surrender and became willing to forgive and not hang onto negative emotions, people or habits. It taught me to live in the moment, to watch my children playing, to slow down and take a moment to see the natural beauty of my surroundings; to really, truly feel the love of my husband and to be grateful for whatever the day brings me.
About Natasha Stewart: Besides being in love with the benefits of organic cotton baby clothes Natasha also takes pride in knowing Little Bean Organics is a community of like minded mums that live as naturally as possible whilst also keep the ups and downs of motherhood real!