As part of my recovery plan, I agreed to see a counselor. It didn’t take any convincing because I already knew that I needed help in any way that I could get it. I know that I need the tools to deal with the thoughts, emotions, and feelings that I have been having—and so it was the right step to take.
Today was my first appointment. Of course, I worried about this appointment and was very nervous going. Hubby went with me and that made me feel a lot better to have his support. (How did I get so lucky to find such a man?)
My doctor said she would research to determine which counselor would be the best fit for me and I think that she did a great job. I really liked this counselor. I felt comfortable and she was very understanding.
I am really happy with the way the appointment went. One of the most impactful parts of today’s session was how she validated how I felt. When I explained my thoughts and feelings, she explained that they were all a part of postpartum depression. It helped me to accept the fact that I have postpartum depression—something I have really struggled with. (I wanted to blame it on myself all of this time as some weakness or failure on my part.)
I feel like she handed me a lot of tools. Two of which were physical, but most were tools in the figurative sense. I feel better equipped to approach all of this, and now it just means putting these tools to use.
After I explained a general idea of my issues, she explained the way that the brain works when we are anxious and explained the importance of getting enough oxygen to the brain. She handed me a pinwheel and told me to hold it at arms length and blow. When we are anxious, it’s hard to breathe out enough air to make it turn. Sure enough, I couldn’t make it turn the first time. I realized how I don’t breathe deeply enough when I am anxious—and apparently that can affect the brain and certainly doesn’t help any of the issues. This is just an example of one of the tools.
At first, I felt ashamed that I was going to a counselor. It seems that there is a stigma about mental health and mental health professionals. But after going to this appointment, I realize how beneficial this will be for me. It is so important that I learn how to deal with everything so that I can live a happy life. It’s just so important that I don’t want to risk not going.
Yesterday was one of my worst days yet. I felt so hopeless at the end of the day. I don’t know if I have ever cried so hard or seen myself look so horribly sunken. And so I am grateful that this appointment gave me hope. The counselor told me that it will get better. I just need to hold on until it does get better.