The absolute best day of my life was on June 25, 2013. My sweet baby, Justin, was born and brought a whole new meaning of happiness and love to our family.
One of the worst days? Returning back to my 9-5 job seven weeks after becoming a mom (a week was added because my gallbladder decided it was time to come out six weeks after delivery... I'll take what I can get, right?!) I shed a few tears that morning, but luckily I had my best friend pick me up for work that day to distract me while we drove downtown.
Then, suddenly.... a week later. It hit. Like a ton of bricks. No, like fifty thousand tons of bricks. It hit.
I was at my desk at my 9-5 and couldn't stop crying. I couldn't breathe, my chest hurt, and I MISSED my baby. I couldn't focus, I couldn't stop crying. All out of absolutely nowhere. No triggers, nothing.
I picked up the phone in another office and called my OB-GYN. They asked me if I felt like I was going to hurt myself or my child... hurt him? How could I hurt him!? I just want him in my arms so I can hold him and protect him. And no, I wasn't going to hurt myself. But all I felt was all sorts of hurt, sadness, and like one seriously crappy mom. Like, SUPER crappy.
After a quick conversation with my doctor, he prescribed me Zoloft to "take the edge off". Uh, doc? Does that make me keep my baby in my arms 24/7 too? No? Shoot.
A few months went by and I stayed on the Zoloft. But over time, I felt like I was emotionless; almost numb. I decided it was time to stop taking it and I stopped cold turkey; only to find out that you're definitely NOT supposed to and I had dizzy spells for a good three weeks (ps: don't stop any medication without talking to your doctor first!).
Then.... a few weeks later, it returned. The ugly cry, the sobbing, the awful mom feeling. This time... the trigger was clear. Justin had to be taken to the ER because of heavy wheezing. He was later diagnosed with RSV. Watching the nurses run in and out of the room upping his oxygen levels, doing terrifying breathing treatments, and a few false alarms about being able to go home... all I could do was cry. But not until he fell asleep. I didn't ever want him catching me sad.
That feeling. That nagging, ugly crying, constantly feeling sick feeling stayed. But, why? Justin was feeling better! Work at my 9-5 gig was stressful, but what's new? Why now? What the hell was going on?
I felt like I had no identity. I was lucky if I knew my own name because I felt so isolated. I had degrees in web content development and communications, and lofty dreams for YEARS of having my own web design business, but who was I kidding? I couldn't even function in my day-to-day life, how the hell would I do something like that? Oh, and thanks to already being a working mom, I saw my kid a whole two hours a day. And, when I did see him, I felt like a zombie. Something was really, really wrong.
I felt like I was out of options. I was tired of not sleeping. Tired of crying every night before work. Tired of crying in the parking lot at daycare drop off.
I finally decided to pick up the phone and call a therapist. Maybe they could help. It was the absolute best decision I've ever made for myself and my family.
The first session was totally awkward, but it was supposed to be. I literally got TWO WORDS out of my mouth to answer the question of, "Tell me a little bit about you and why you're here." -- serious ugly crying, folks. I couldn't even talk without crying.
I went from wanting to hide from therapy to looking forward to the sessions. She was someone I could vent to without judgement. She helped me to validate some of my concerns. She was the voice I lost.
During that time in therapy, a span of a bit over a year, I went from not being able to speak two words to launching my own web design business, quitting my 9-5 job, and taking my growing web design business full-time. My (now 4 year old!) son is home with me on Mondays and we finally get some of that time back that we lost when I was in my last job. And, since going to therapy, I've partnered up with SO many creative business owners to bring their businesses to life in the world of web design. I've actually had the opportunity to help other creative business owners, and moms, leave their own 9-5 jobs to live the life they never knew could be a reality for them.
I feel like I've finally found my identity
By: Britt Hyatt, Co-Owner of Launch your Daydream