Label it and Put it in a Box

Society has this need to label everyone and everything. Maybe if I fit into a category, there will be instructions on how to fix me. Maybe not.


Real life. Not suitable for Facebook.
I asked my therapist if I will be diagnosed with post natal depression or anxiety or both.
As I spoke I realized- why do I need to know? What is this constant desire to label everything? It happens in society all the time. We label our careers, our sexuality, our social status.
Maybe if I fit into a category, there will be instructions on how to fix me.
So how did I get here?  Could the physical rigours of being a new mom actually cause post natal issues?  The mind and body are inexplicably linked so it makes sense that the newborn stage alone could make any sane person crazy. Isn't sleep deprivation a form of torture?
I wish I started documenting these feelings earlier so I could see my progress.  By progress I mean gone are the mornings Matt would leave for work while tears streamed down my face.  It's no coincidence that everyone in our house is getting more sleep lately.
Even though I don't feel hopeless most days, I must now deal with the residual effects of being in that state for the past few months.  My thinking patterns have changed.  I guess is why I asked the question- anxiety or depression- in the first place. Now I feel less depressed and more anxious.
But what’s the difference really?  Just two different words, two different labels.  I might not cry as much but my hands tremble when I'm running late.  There is work to be done.
The short answer- I won't be "diagnosed," but I will continue to go to sessions as long as I feel they are helpful.
So many women I know have shared their own battles with me recently.  These are women I respect.  They are educated, successful and fun. Some are Moms (Mums) and some are not.  Regardless, these women are constantly shadow boxing.  We put so much pressure on ourselves that we have to fight to live up to our own expectations.

A good friend said to me recently; “You’re good at everything you do- what makes you think being a Mom will be any different?”

It’s a fair question.  Maybe it’s because nothing else I’ve ever done in my life has mattered to me as much as this. And it's all relative.

More than anything else- I don't want Lavinia to learn to force herself into boxes or labels already created by society. Please my little baby, live outside the lines.

Let's get happy.
Okay, I'll try.

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4 comments on “Label it and Put it in a Box”

  1. Very profound Dawn Noelle. Self reflection and analysis are always helpful. It sounds to me like your off to a good start. A trip across the pond to show off Lavinia to the other side of the family hopefully will be a welcome diversion

  2. "We put so much pressure on ourselves that we have to fight to live up to our own expectations." This one sentence sums up what people write entire articles about. Books. Volumes. Beautifully written. Love to you and yours, Dawn x

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