Me: hello blog.
Blog: hello you. How you feeling?
Me: I don’t know. That’s why I thought I’d come and talk to you . (Plus it’s 4am and I’m bored shitless, and gumby thinks its party time & won’t stop kicking).
Blog: god. Gumby’s not even born and he needs reform school.
Blog: we’ll I’m glad you’re here for a chat. I’m good like that. It’s kind of my point.
Me: well it wasn’t, originally.
Blog: no. Originally I was a way to easily share info with friends and family, so that when we actually conversed it wasn’t solely about the annoying minutiae of infertility treatment.
Me: yeah, that was what I thought you were for.
Blog: but I’m so much more awesome than that.
Me: really? How so?
Blog: well when you talked to me, you could figure out your feelings about the weird shit that goes down in infertility land.
Me: true. And that’s kind of helpful .
Blog: and pretty important, I would have thought. Given that you’ve been fucked in the head in the past.
Me: that’s a bit harsh
Blog: I’m a blog. There is no point to me if I don’t speak a truth, of sorts. I mean your history w depression
Me: oh that. Meh. That’s all in the past. You were starting to sound like you thought of yourself as a modern day Delphic oracle, for a moment there.
Blog: I am. But let’s leave my self aggrandisement out of this. I’m also awesome because you found a bonus prize in blog land. Kind of like the free set of steak knives you get with every ab circle pro purchased.
Me: have you been watching TVSN again?
Blog: no ? (with upward inflection similar to hub-in-boots blatant denial to the question ‘did you eat all the cheese?’).. Ok maybe. Point being, you got a bonus. Finding Other followers, similar situation. You read their blogs, and found new perspectives on your own situation, not to mention empathy, support, and a few laughs.
Me: actually, that’s true.
Blog: of course it is. Modern day Delphic oracle, remember!? So anyway, what’s up?
Me: there’s some weird shit going down IRL
Blog: who is IRL?
Me: In Real Life
Blog: do go on
Me: great, now you think you’re a shrink?
Me: huffle. Ok I’ve just got no energy and I can’t seem to get things done. I feel overwhelmed.
Blog: it’s called pregnancy. Have a look at your belly and play spot the difference with your Xmas snapshots dummy.
Me: no, I mean, things should be easier now, I’m kind of normal, I’m almost at full term, and I feel worse
Blog: you’re a deadshit
Me: BLOG!!! Too harsh!!!
Blog: sorry. I’ll pull my head in. Anyway, you already ranted about this yesterday.
Me: yes I know. But something else happened in real life.plus I don’t feel better. You didn’t do your job.
Blog: that’s because you were boring and whiny. Sorry. I mean that’s because you hadn’t established, with clarity, what your feelings were. Plus can I say this is your classic pattern?
Me: what is? Whaddya mean?
Blog: you always feel worse after a stressful event. During it you just keep on going. So that everyone around you thinks you’re Teflon woman. Then when the stress is all over, you drop your bundle.
Me: but I haven’t had the baby yet. Stressful?
Blog: that whole hello you can’t have kids- 2 rounds back to back lets fuck up her hormones fertility treatment- why not chuck in 5 hemorrhages and a sub chorionic haematoma-possible late late miscarriage- if you order in the first 150 callers you’ll get free gestational diabetes and 15 weeks bedrest. That whole deal. Personally, I reckon even with free shipping I would have trouble selling that as a fun time.
Me: but that’s all over. I should be relieved.
Blog: yep. But that’s not how it works for you. Weirdo.
Me: so should I be seeking professional help?
Blog: dunno . I hear you got a pretty big new job coming up.
Me: yeah. I was so excited that I actually got the job, that was one hell of a selection process, but it’s starting to look like a cliff.
Blog: and you’re a lemming.
Blog: you’re welcome. Maybe you should just snap out of it.
Me: that’s what a relative of mine said. To another relative. On an iPad. That i was holding. Via a Facebook notification. That I wasn’t supposed to see.
Blog: that’s unfortunate.
Me: yes. That’s what I said. They had a couple of goes, actually. It was really awkward.
Blog: ouch. Upset, much?
Me: well, at first. But after my first soak in a bath in seven months and a cry, I began to see the funny side. I, too, have managed to send a bitchy email to the very person I was bitching about. Technology has pitfalls.
Blog: that is pretty funny. Why you telling me about it? Bitchy, much?
Me: No actually, not bitching. It was the “snap out of it” phrase. It stuck in my head. People said it to me when I had depression 10-12 years ago, and it was really unhelpful. And I promised myself if I ever got better I’d never hide the fact I had depression because being open about it helps lessen the stigma, and helps other people get help.
Blog: don’t get all moral high horse on me. It stuck in your head because it is listed as one of the least helpful things to say to someone on every mental health site. Like PANDA, and Gidget, and Beyond blue? And bloody hell when you’re pregnant they give you a lot of those mental health brochures. And fridge magnets!
Blog: but no one said it to you.
Me: not knowingly, no. Indirectly, yes.
Blog: so you’re saying all the whinging about your Internet and car seat was not really about that.
Me: nope. Don’t think so.
Blog: awkward silence.
Blog: ok. What are you really worried about?
Me: regrouping after our little roller coaster enough to be a good mum. Not liking having a baby. The guilt of not liking baby when we were infertile and we’re so lucky to have made it. Labour or c section. Stillbirth. Losing my identity. All of these worries in the face of no bloody energy .
Blog: that’s a lot of blog posts
Me: you saying you’re not up to the job?
Blog: you remember when you first got pregnant?
Me: yep. Clear as day.
Blog: you suddenly got worries about morning sickness, and weight gain, and genetic problems….
Me: oh yeah! That was amazing! I’d never thought about those things before. They snuck up on me.
Blog: And you got no morning sickness, and gained hardly any weight, and got the all clear on gene stuff. You didn’t anticipate the hemorrhage , or the clot, or the diabetes, or the giving up work and losing an income. You also didn’t even think about how funny the kicks and rolls and punches would be.
Blog: so you can’t anticipate motherhood, and its problems and joys either. Just live it.
Blog: but don’t try and snap out of it.
Blog: no. That’s dumb. Counterproductive. There is a time for keeping on going, and there’s a time for sitting with your feelings and not running away. It’s sittin’ time.
Blog: and you should check in with a professional. That PANDA thing stands for PRE & Ante Natal Depression & Anxiety. Maybe you’re the Pre . Maybe you’re not. Can’t hurt to ask.
Me: I’m flat as a tack, awake at 4am and I can’t make decisions. But I’m not depressed. It feels different to depression. I think I’m just having a reasonable, if delayed, reaction to some quite extraordinary circumstances. An emotional reaction to a really hard situation is not a mental health problem. It’s a problem where the reaction continues beyond when it’s useful. Sadness is not depression. Day to day worry is not an anxiety disorder.
And I don’t even understand what anxiety is. I’m not wringing my hands. I’m not thinking of throwing myself on front of a bus.
Blog: yet. It really wouldn’t hurt to check in with a professional. You don’t try and dye your own eyelashes. You can’t get the right perspective. Same same.
Me: you’re a nag.
Blog: I’m a blog. Nagging’s for mothers.
Me: shut up. That’s sexist. I’m glad we had this talk. I feel a bit better.
Blog: good. Now make a bloody appointment.
Me: harsh, blog. Harsh.
Blog: is he still kicking?
Me: he’s insane. Having a gymnastics class.
Blog: he is going to be one nightmare of a toddler. Get up and make yourself a cuppa. I’ll introduce you to my friend sleeplessness. He and motherhood, what a couple! They’ve been together for years. They’re inseparable. You’ll just love them.
Me: they sound lovely. You can shut up now.