Daily Prompt: Sparkle

depression, anxiety, postpartum depression, motherhood, parenthood

Despite what her husband thought, she was not okay.  This has been long in the making.  Approximately 40 weeks of pregnancy and two years of raising his son.  Between the changes to her body and the unbalanced hormones, she was far from okay.  Depression and anxiety were now the framework of her entire being.

It is actually surprising that it took two years before she finally snapped.  The changes were subtle, normal fears women have when pregnant.  Then, desperately trying to lull her newborn to sleep.  Once he was finally sleeping, she would have a sudden stroke of panic.  Because, you know, SIDS.  So she would get up every so often just to see if he was still breathing.  Sleep deprivation could also play a big role in the decline of her mental health.

Fast forward two years.  Every little thing becomes a potential hazard.  The baby can choke on his food, so she cuts in up into tiny miniscule pieces.  Her husband mocks her attempt of avoiding a tragedy by joking that the boy will barely be able to taste his food because she minced it so tiny.

It becomes impossible to find time to take care of herself.  Her husband lacks in the participation department.  He goes off to work early in the morning and doesn’t return until after she has put their son to bed.  The thought of taking a shower now becomes an impossible chore.  To make it work, she tries to set the little boy up in the bathroom with her, but within minutes his attention span has faded and he swings the bathroom door open to escape.  She runs after him with shampoo still in her hair.  Desperately praying for some relief.

Her anxiety eventually comes to a head, and she is now having full-blown panic attacks.  At this point, she realizes she is not happy.  This was not a healthy way to live.  She needs to do better for her self, and for the sake of her child.  She has an appointment with her therapist for the following afternoon.  The appointment is within the next hour.  She gathers up her son’s bag and some toys and loads everything into the truck.  She buckles her son in and climbs into the driver’s seat.  Within minutes she arrives in front of their business.  Moving hastily, she grabs the baby and his bag and walks through the garage looking for her husband.

After making it across the entire garage, she walks into the front office.  There is her husband sitting at the front desk drinking a cup of coffee.  There were several customers sitting across the room waiting on their cars.  The news is playing on the television and the phone is ringing.  He looks over at her and quickly jumps up out of his chair and picks up the phone.

Aggravated, she mouths that she needs to get to her appointment, but he holds a finger up, signaling for her to wait.  She puts her son down next to her husband and begins to unload his toys and hands him a sippy cup.  Without any warning, the boy begins to have a very dramatic, typical two-year old tantrum.  Her husband looks at her as if to ask, “What are you thinking?”

Quickly, she picks her son back up, but he won’t stop crying.  He knows that his mother is about to leave him and he is not having it.  As she looks up,  she notices all of the customers staring intently at her.  She shoves the boy into his father’s arms and runs back to her truck.

Sitting in the driver’s seat with her head on the wheel.  She squeezes her eyes closed to try to stop the tears. Her heart is pounding and she can barely breathe.  Everything is so overwhelming and she is having trouble thinking straight.  She opens the mirror in her visor and wipes her tears away. Staring at herself, she is trying to find the person she used to be.  She tries to find the sparkle that once lit up her eyes.  But all she could see was a small glimmer of hope.