Dear baby,

I’m sorry I had depression after I had you.

I promise I couldn’t help it.

I wanted to pick you up and cuddle you in my arms so many times, but my mind and my heart couldn’t connect. So many times, you laid there in the crib. Just looking at me, cooing. It was almost as if you knew, and you were beckoning me to come back to you.

I promise I couldn’t help it.

Your cries triggered my anxiety.

When you started crying, my heart would race and my mind would shut down. I knew you needed comfort, just to be held close. And eventually I would, but it took everything in me to do it.

I promise I couldn’t help it.

When you finally smiled at me, I did my best to smile back. It was almost like I didn’t know who you were, I didn’t know who I was, either.

I promise I couldn’t help it.

When people would ask me how wonderful it was to have you here, I lied. After you came, everything about me changed. It wasn’t your fault, it wasn’t mine, either. But I just felt so guilty. What kind of a mom needed medicine to help her feel the love she had for her baby?

I promise I couldn’t help it.

My medicine started to work. I stated connecting with you more. There was no denying how much I loved you, and you loved me! But once those feelings were there, I felt so guilty that they weren’t there for so long. I had lost so much time with you.

I promise I couldn’t help it.

But then one day, loving you was just so easy. I didn’t have to try anymore.

When you smiled, it filled my heart with so much joy! I no longer felt the guilt and shame of my depression, because I knew it was simply one small part of my story… our story.

And even though I couldn’t help the hard parts then, I can’t help the beautiful parts now.

The joy.
The excitement.
The love.
The wholeness.
The bond.
The cuddling.
The closeness.

No, I can’t help any of that now.

And I’m not one bit sorry about it.

If you are struggling today with postpartum depression, please let me tell you that there is hope! Not just hope for joy, but hope from the shame and guilt. I have lived with guilt for so many years, and God in his goodness and granted me so many of the freedoms that I never thought possible in my motherhood.

Originally published on From Blacktop to Dirt Road

Lauren Eberspacher

I'm Lauren and I'm a work-in-progress farmer's wife, coffee addict, follower of Jesus and a recovering perfectionist. When I don't have my three kids attached at my hip, you can find me bringing meals into the fields, dancing in my kitchen, making our house a home, and chatting over a piece of pie with my girl friends. I'm doing my best to live my life intentionally seeking all that God has for me and my family. Follow me at: From Blacktop to Dirt Road on Facebook laurenspach on Instagram