Mental Health Thoughts & Inspiration

When The Words Won’t Flow

A photograph of a woman with brown hair wearing a red plaid shirt and red lipstick - she is looking down and away from the camera - she looks pensive - When the words don't flow - talking to children about Depression and Anxiety - Mrs H's favourite things

Sometimes when I write about my depression the words just flow. It’s as if they were always there just waiting to be written down in black and white.

On other occasions, I want to write but the words aren’t forthcoming. They won’t flow.

Words are created and deleted. Sentences are written and rewritten. Paragraphs are formed and unformed.

I can start a post about one thing and then it becomes about something completely different. For example, when I sat down to blog tonight I meant to write a post called Mummy’s heart has an ouchy.

Mummy’s heart has an ouchy

The five painful words that I use to describe my depression to my four-year-old daughter.

But I can’t write that post. The words won’t flow.

Because the truth is I don’t know how to tell my daughter about my depression. I can’t.

How can I tell a four-year-old that all I want to do is cry? How can I explain that for over 20 years I’ve lived with a dark cloud shadowing my life? Most days the sun shines through and the cloud disperses. But there are always the bad days. The days when the black cloud descends and all I can see is darkness.

I hate myself because I’m a mother who suffers from depression. And many moons ago, I believed that my depression and anxiety would prevent me from having children.

But a psychiatrist convinced me that I was wrong. He told me that I would be a wonderful mother. In his opinion, my whole life had been leading to one moment. The moment that I held my newborn baby in my arms and the world stood still.

And he was right. He was so right. And becoming a mother to Little Miss H brought me joy and contentment. Two things I had craved for so desperately.

But then the time came for us to try for another baby. And I miscarried. Again and again. Four miscarriages in total. One before Little Miss H was born and three afterwards.

Yet I carried on. I went through the motions. I was heartbroken but I didn’t let myself truly grieve. We wanted a second child. So I concentrated on being Little Miss H’s Mummy and I tried to shield her from my pain.

Through all of this, my mental health was okay. I had a few wobbles but they would pass quickly. Then I got pregnant with Little Mister H and I suffered from prenatal anxiety.

Finally, in July 2016, our second rainbow baby was born. Four days later, I attended a psychiatric assessment. Essentially, I was told that I needed to be kinder to myself. I had been through a lot and I needed to go home and enjoy the family that I’d so desperately wanted.

And that is what I did. Until something changed. The grief of baby loss hit me. I thought that Little Mister H’s birth would bring closure. But it didn’t.

Over the next few months, my anxiety got worse and worse. I began to have panic attacks. And my depression grew in intensity.

The dark cloud affected my ability to parent. I became impatient and I’d snap at the children for no reason. The days would drag and I’d crave to be away from them. I’d yearn for peace and quiet. For solitude.

And I wish that I could explain to them why I felt this way. I want to say that I’m sorry. I’m sorry that on the dark days they have to deal with a person that I hate. I long to be able to assure them that it’s not their fault. It’s never their fault.

I want to explain that I long to be a normal Mummy. A Mummy who doesn’t have an ouchy in her heart.

But I can’t. I can’t tell them that. The words won’t flow.

All I can tell them is that I love them. And all I can say to myself is that I’m doing the best I can.

Hugs

Lucy

xxxx

12 Comments

  • Reply
    Kate Tunstall, The Less-Refined Mind
    January 24, 2018 at 10:28 pm

    Oh Lucy. But the words have flowed, beautifully. You’ll show them this one day when they’re old enough and it will explain it all perfectly. In the meantime, sending you all lots of love. And by the way, we all feel that guilt occasionally for various reasons, and our babies always love us in spite of our flaws. You’re their mummy and that makes you perfect for them by default xxx

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      January 24, 2018 at 11:34 pm

      Oh Kate, thank you so much. That is such a lovely comment. One of the benefits of having a blog is that I know I’ll be able to show it to my children when they are older. Hopefully it will show them how loved they are. And I’d like to think that it will give them some insight into my depression. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Tamera Patenaude
    January 22, 2018 at 3:26 pm

    This is a beautiful post! I have been struggling with depression for the majority of my life, and my husband struggles with depression as well. I could imagine that telling your children would be incredibly hard. Telling them that you love them is most certainly a great start, especially considering their age. Maybe when they get a little bit older, you could try something like this: “Mummy has an ouchy on her heart. When mummy gets angry and yells at you for things that don’t seem to be wrong, it is because her ouchy is making it very difficult to stay calm. It really upsets me that I do this, and I am really sorry. I hope you can forgive me, and I hope you know that I am trying my best for you two.” Hopefully that will help them to understand, and if your kids are as great as you seem, I am sure they will do everything they can to support you. And things just might get easier. I wish my mother had explained her depression to me when I was a child, maybe then I would not have grown up thinking that everything I did was wrong. And even still, at 25 years old, she still snaps at me for the smallest things. The difference is, now I understand because I am walking in her shoes…. and most of the time all I want is my mommy, who is usually too depressed to mentally be there, even when she is physically there.

    Just remember to try to keep smiling, and you truly are doing the best you can! You seem like a very strong woman and your children are extremely lucky to have a Mum like you!

    Cheers

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      January 23, 2018 at 9:39 pm

      I think this may be the nicest comment I have ever received. Thank you so much. It brought tears to my eyes. You’re so kind. I’m sorry that you struggle too. But I’m sure your mum is really proud of you. Thank you again for your kind comment. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Kerri-Ann
    January 12, 2018 at 3:38 pm

    Oh bless you, you are the best mummy and deep down I am sure that you know that. We all have days where we become the person we don’t want to be but when you have dealt with what you have then please do not question yourself. You have to heal and sometimes hiding our grief or upset only makes things worse for us. Gorgeous words. I do hope you are ok x

  • Reply
    Rachel
    January 11, 2018 at 1:25 pm

    Telling them you love them is more than enough. I struggle with explaining my anxiety too. As always a beautiful post xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  • Reply
    Ivana Poku
    January 10, 2018 at 5:14 pm

    Hun, you ARE a normal mummy. As the way you feel is totally normal. You are a very brave girl for sharing this, stay strong love xxx

  • Reply
    Honest Mum
    January 8, 2018 at 12:18 pm

    You are an amazing mum, reach out to those you trust and talk. Don’t feel bad about not explaining depression to your kids, lots of love x

  • Reply
    Hannah Budding Smiles
    January 8, 2018 at 6:40 am

    Oh Lucy, please don’t hate yourself for something that’s not your fault darling. You’re a beautiful person inside and out, you’re a loving mother and one of the kindest and most thoughtful people I know xxx

  • Reply
    Rachel
    January 5, 2018 at 7:56 pm

    What a lovely post, you sound like such a brilliant mum. You’re so kind to share your story to help others, sending hugs and best wishes for 2018 x

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      January 7, 2018 at 7:22 pm

      Awwww, thank you for your kind comment. I really appreciate it. Hugs Lucy xxxx

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