This is me, Laura Roberts, 32, mother of one, wife, full time project coordinator, aspiring roller derby player and runner/jogger.
In 2009, I had a baby and lost my mum in the space of 2weeks. (My mum died on 17th October after years of illness and weeks of serious reactions to a stem cell transplant, and Ada was born on 27th).
At the time, when Ada was born, she was my focus and all I could think about. I had lost my mum, I was emotional/hormonal and it was hard. I wanted to breast feed but found it so hard I decided to stop after 2 weeks, at that moment I realised how much I missed my mum and how much I was going to miss her forever. She would never be there to ask the simple questions about bringing up my little one...it sucked and still does.
I am so lucky and grateful to have such amazing sisters who took responsibility for mum's funeral and will while I was getting used to being a mum.
When Ada was about 1 and a half, I began to feel things getting on top of me. Before then, things had been hard on and off, but by now I was crying a lot (at home, at work, for no reason and at anything a tiny bit emotional), not being able to concentrate at work and feeling totally messy in my head, constantly obsessed with things like cleaning, washing and tidying, and I was also very moody, taking most of this out on David and Ada!
So, I decided (after and chat with David and a visit to the Dr) to try taking a small dose of antidepressant to see if they would help. After talking things through with David, the health visitor and the Dr I felt a little better already, and taking a tiny pill once a day actually helped more that I could ever have imagined.
At first I though it was probably a bit of a placebo affect, but then it continued. I wanted to get up in the morning, I wanted to spend time with Ada, I stopped obsessing about how tidy the house was and stopped having a go at David about everything!
So, the antidepressants worked by helping me find a happy medium, they cleared my jumbled head and helped me get on with things with out mood swings and obsessive distractions.
Now, 18 months on, I'm thinking about coming off the pills. I had an unplanned break of taking them for about 5 days due to not putting in a prescription before the bank holiday....and I felt ok. As the level of antidepressant reduced in my system, I started to feel a bit wobbly, my head became and bit fuzzy, I was extremely tired and was starting to get ratty and moody again (not as bad as before, but it was noticeable).
I'd like to come off the pills before I have another baby, and I know from before, that pregnancy hormones seem to help me feel better in general, so I'm not worried about that..it's just, if I do stop taking the pills, will I be ok? Will I just go back to how I was before, or after the small amount of counselling I've had, the opportunity to think and process things in my own time, will I be ok?
I know what the negative side affects are of taking the pills, and the positive. I don't want to take them for ever, as I know my 'depression' if that's what you want to call it, was a result of stress and other factors, rather than just my head....so maybe I can cope on my own.
I hope so.