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June 21, 2022

Motherhood, Postpartum Depression and Beyond


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In this weekś episode, we discuss postpartum depression. Join me for a wonderful conversation with Meagan Gordon Scheuerman, mother of two children and author of the fabulous book “Babies Are The Worst: A Memoir about Motherhood, PPD, & Beyond.” Meagan shares her honest story about dealing with her depression and discusses her emotional journey of handling her symptoms with an eye toward recovery. Her goal is to create awareness of the effects of postpartum depression and encourage women to communicate and support each other. If you need support, please visit us on our Facebook page at facebook.com/groups/reallifemomz/, and don't forget to follow Real Life Momz, so you don't miss an episode.

To purchase a copy of: Babies Are The Worst: A Memoir about Motherhood, PPD & Beyond. By Meagan Gordon Scheuerman, https://amzn.to/3sMJnMj(Note: This is an affiliate link, at no extra cost to you, but we will earn a small commission on this purchase)

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Transcript

Welcome to Real Life Momz I'm your host, Lisa Foster, and Real Life Momz is a podcast that is all about moms having real conversations, sharing resources, and telling their inspiring stories. Our mission is to connect moms by talking about these topics that parents deal with every day and to continue these conversations in our Real Life Momz Facebook group, we would love for you to become part of our community. And in this week's episode, we're going to discuss an important topic that moms just don't discuss enough and that's postpartum depression.

I invited Megan Gordon Scheuerman, mother of two adorable children and author of Babies are the Worst, A Memoir About Motherhood, PPD, and Beyond to come share her story about postpartum depression.

Hi, Megan, welcome to Real Life Momz, and thank you for coming on the show and sharing your story with us about your experience with postpartum depression, which led you on a journey to write your book, right? Babies are the Worst a Memoir about Motherhood, PPD, and Beyond. Yes. Thank you for having me.

I have to ask, I know we're going to talk and really get into this topic, but I got to know, we have to talk about that beyond eventually because I'm like dying to know what happens next. So, remind me to ask you that later. And I love that you're here to talk about postpartum depression because what I realized coming on and just really thinking about this topic tonight and talking to you as I really know very little about postpartum depression. You know, it's like, I think as a parent, you know about it, and I think of sadness, but it sounds like there's so much more.

Oh my gosh. Well, it sounds like you're a lot like me. I knew nothing either. Um, which is why it took me nearly a year before I realized what was going on with me. Like I just thought, oh, motherhood is not good. This is the worst thing. Not the best thing. Like everyone's been lying to me maybe to like further the species, but otherwise.

Just to populate the universe, right. That's what it was for.

It was a great lie that has been told through the generations, just so that we could keep people alive.

You have a personal journey on this and your personal story. I know it took you a year, can you tell us a little bit about what was going on in those initial stages?

Yeah, so it's interesting. I have always wanted to be a mom my whole life. Like I just assumed that's what I was going to be the very best at.  I always worked with kids. I was a camp counselor. I was a babysitter, my sister's nine years younger. So I felt like I helped raise her. I also never really felt any mental health issues. I actually had a friend reached out to me and she's like, while I was pregnant with my son and she said, you know, you should really look into postpartum depression.

I didn't know much about it. And I wished that I had known because I had it and I was like, oh gosh.  And in my head, I'm thinking, not going to happen to me. I just felt totally oblivious. So when my son came along, I had a pretty traumatic birth, an unexpected C-section I was pushing not, you know, the labor itself was over 24 hours, but the actual pushing took place over a span of seven hours, which typically four is the max.

They don't usually let you go past four. 

Yeah, I mean, I didn't even push it all. I was like, no, just I'll take that C-section when the doctor came in, he was like, oh, nothing's progressing. Do you want a c-sectopn? And I'm like, yeah, let's take one of those. I'll take it. So I didn't even push it all. So I can't even imagine four or seven hours. 

No, I don't recommend it. It's not a good thing. Um, so the initial, like entry into motherhood, I just was completely spent, you know, and I was traumatized. I was totally like, oh, this is, I just pushed for seven hours and I still need a, C-section like major abdominal surgery. It's just, my recovery is really, really tough.

And that alone, I mean, how did you feel about that? Just even alone, because I know, I didn't mind a C-section because honestly I didn't want to have to push. I'll be honest. That seems like way too much work for me. Um, but there are people who really think that is so important in their birth process to give birth and that alone can be very traumatizing. You know? Do you feel like that played a little part in it or not really?

Oh yeah, for sure. I think that I felt like a failure in a lot of ways. Like, I really wanted to experience what it was like to give birth. Um, I wanted to do it like medication free. I was one of those. I thought I'm going to experience all these things. And like, I really, like I said, I just was really looking forward to being a mom. But when, um, that all happen and then I had the really laborious recovery and other recovery was in some ways worse.

Well, especially after pushing for so long.

Versus me where I'm just like, no, sign me up for the C-section. There was no pushing, no tear and no damage. Really. I was just ready to go. Um, so I can only imagine that played a part of also just taking a longer time to recover.

Right. Just overall exhaustion. And then I just, I was very emotional. I have a lot of unexplained emotion of overwhelming sadness and that was in the first few weeks. And then what was interesting to me, cause you said, I don't know much about postpartum depression and you think about sadness. That's what I was thinking too. Um, and in the first couple of weeks I dismissed any sadness. I felt as baby blues, because you hear you're going to experience baby blues during those first two weeks expect that emotional roller coaster it's no big deal.

And if it lasts beyond that, then you should be concerned. Well, it didn't last beyond that. I didn't feel sad, but I also didn't feel happy and I didn't feel much of anything. So what I describe it as like this great, nothingness kind of took over me. I mean, I'm an eighties kid and I loved the never ending story.

Like that was one of my favorite movies growing up. And you think about this, the nothing in which was this Wolf that came and just made everything disappear and not matter. And I just, the imagery of that, I literally never thought about it until this very moment. Really. Um, it's truly, for me, the imagery, I always sort of liken it to and I talk about it in the book is being underwater where everything's kind of muted. Everything is a little bit slower.

Everything, um, feels like you're on fire. You know, like if your lungs are burning type of thing underneath everything else. Yeah. I was drowning. Yeah.

So I just felt a whole lot of nothing. And so it wasn't, I was picturing this like sad little rock. That's what depression is. I was picturing not loving my child. I loved my child. Like I loved him more than anything. In fact, I had a lot of anxiety, um, which I didn't realize was a thing. I had intrusive thoughts, like wondering, oh God, something terrible is gonna happen to him. Um, checking on his breathing all the time, making sure like, what if I I'm walking down the stairs?

What if I drop him? What if I fall? What if I trip? You know, all those types of things, just constantly invading your mind and wearing you down. It's exhausting being anxious, the depression, the anxiety, it just all sort of snowballed and metamorphosized into anger. Like that was the one emotion I truly felt never went away. I was angry at feeling like I had been lied to. I was angry at my perception of motherhood being different than what it was.

And I just, I was angry at myself. So.

When you say lied to what does that mean?

Yeah. I felt like you, everyone said being a mother is the most wonderful thing that will happen to you. You're going to feel this overwhelming love. It´s unlike anything you've ever experienced, you will be forever change. That part was true. I was.

Not necessarily in the way you were thinking though.

You know, and I I'd like to point out because I feel like a lot of people dismiss what they're going through because they think, well, I don't want to harm my baby. I don't want to harm myself. I don't want to, I don't not love my child. I'm not, not connected. I am connected. But to me, um, it started to, because it went untreated and unrecognized for as long as it did. It started to become anger  and I can't live like this, which then becomes, it doesn't matter if I'm not here anymore, which becomes it comes dangerous. Um, I'm, I'm clear to point out. I was never actively suicidal, but I did have thoughts of if I got in this car accident, like if the car went off the road, would I try to get out?

 So it's a scary point because I, know that I'm, well now that I have received lots of treatment and talk to countless people, I mean, I've almost been a mom for 10 years. So this was almost 10 years ago for me. I realized how unhealthy I was and the big lie wasn't that motherhood is wonderful. The big lie was depression. Depression was the liar telling me nothing mattered because everything matters.

I mean, it really, truly does. So, um, it's really scary to think that I believed the lie that depression was telling me.

Yeah. That, I mean, okay. That is so much more than sadness, you know? Like, I mean  just the anxiety.  I had anxiety. I think we like checked the kids, every time I think we even had a machine in their bed, I'm going to say this out loud, like a breathing machine. If they stop breathing, So some of these are common worries, but getting to that point of just numbness and anger and really going down that path of would any, would it make a difference if I, my car just went off the road.

Right? I mean, that's a huge difference from going, just being anxious. Um, yeah. Let me ask you, what about people around you? Like, I mean, did your husband notice anything? Friends?

Yeah, it's a great question. So, um, I did a really excellent job of masking my shame. I felt a lot of shame. Um, I still feel it shame and guilt, uh, about how I felt, I think about when I have to have the conversation with my children about mommy was sick. That wasn't, that I didn't love you. Right. So I didn't want anyone to think that I was sick or that I was not myself or that I didn't love my child because there's that fear of, are they going to try and take him away from me?

Do they think that I'm not safe? You know, there are a lot of layers to why we don't seek help. And why we don't say anything. So my immediate family did not notice no. Um, my husband knew because he was in the trenches with me.

He knew how hard it was. He could hear me crying, but we did not know enough about depression or postpartum depression. And to recognize what I was really going through. When did you actually name it? So what happened? It was an interesting series of events where I knew that, oh gosh, I knew something was wrong. Um, and like something wasn't right. And I write about this in the book about seeing a pair of fuzzy socks that I brought to the hospital with me.

They were pink and they were stripped and they were fuzzy and they had a little peace sign on them. And I had them in my hospital bag and nine months after my son was born, I was cleaning out my sock drawer. And I found them stuffed in the back. And I physically recoiled, which I've never had that sort of reaction, but it felt like I was looking at a previous version of myself when I was happy.

And then I realized I wasn't happy. So that happened right around the time I had a friend and a family member, both had become first-time moms and they were posting all about it on social media and how it's the best thing ever. And I was like, wow, they're such liars. Why are they lying? Like they could just post a picture. They don't have to write about being happy. I was like, well, but what if they're not lying? A little tiny voice said, what if they're not lying and why, if they're happy, why aren't you?

So I started to recognize something was wrong. And then I, the only postpartum depression book that I knew about was Brook Shields book. And gosh, I mean, that book is almost 20 years old at this point, right? 

And so I went to the library to check it out and I was mortified, first of all, because I had to ask the librarian where to find it. And I had my son with me and he was an infant. He was like six or seven months old. I think when I was like, I want to read her book. So I read her book when he was like, probably about seven months old. And I was like, oh my God, I thought all these things. And I started to like see myself reflected in her story and then right around that.

So that kind of like started to sink in. And then at the nine-month mark, when I found those socks and I had those friends saying all these things that I was like, well, I don't feel like that, oh, I need to talk to somebody. Ah, something's really wrong.

Something's really wrong. I have to ask this. Like, I mean, going to the doctor for your, well checks, were they asking you how you were doing and you were just still like, kind of faking it?

They sure were.

You are an actress. Right? 

Yeah. So I was living in Los Angeles at the time my son was born. I was working as an actor. Well, I never thought that I employed it in my own life until I was like, oh, I've been putting on a show. Like I have absolutely been putting on a show for everyone, including myself. Um, cause I didn't want to acknowledge what was going on with me either. So there's a lot of self-denial and just thinking and protecting myself. Cause that was scary to think that I wasn't well.

So the moment you actually had kind of this name for it that you figured out what was going on, how did that feel to you? Just actually knowing what was going on?

Oh gosh. It was really, really hard. Like one of the hardest things I ever did was actually pick up the phone and try to find somebody to talk to. Um, like I mean, I can remember like the stress sweat, you know, just like, oh my God, I gotta call somebody. So the first person I called was my OB GYN. She did not have any recommendations. And in fact, like the next day I got a notification, like in the mail saying that she was no longer going to be with that practice. So my doctor was leaving the profession.

So I was like, oh, I got to go down like an insurance list. So it was really, really hard to like find who to talk to. Um, and I just had to ask, do you have any experience, whatever psychologist is first, I went for a psychologist cause I did not think I needed medication. I just wanted someone to talk to so they can process the trauma of the birth. I thought it all goes back to the trauma of the birth it's that first month was really, really dark and really, really hard. And if I work through what happened, then I'm going to be okay.

And so I finally like called all these people and got a doctor who was like, oh yeah, I do work with, um, postpartum women. And I actually had postpartum depression too. And I was like, okay, this is who I want to talk to. And the more we started chatting and the more we started chatting, she like, I think you might benefit from talking to a psychiatrist and you might benefit from medication. And I was like, I think you are crazy.

I was not open to that idea. Um, and then I had a bit of a panic attack, a incident that happened around Christmas time that made me realize that, oh, she knows what she's talking about. She is a professional. Okay. Maybe I should keep this appointment. I had made an appointment with a psychiatrist. She's like, you can go to the psychiatrist. You don't have to take the medication. If she recommends something, you don't have to take, it is all up to you. But I think it would be good for you to chat with her and see what her recommendation is.

Yeah. Do you mind sharing your turning point with that? What's happening around Christmas time?

Oh gosh. Yeah. So at Christmas time we, um, again, we were living in California and we went to my family's house in Florida for Christmas. And my cousin had her first child six months after I did. So at Christmas time, my son was about 10 months old. This was, you know, I've been seeing a therapist. I was letting my family know I was seeing a therapist. That was a really big deal. Nobody knew in my family had ever seen a therapist before anyway.

So my cousin was at Christmas and with her four month old baby, I was terrified of her baby. I was like, what is this feeling I'm having? I don't remember my son being this small. I, I didn't remember my 10 month old child being four months old. And I recognized like a four month old baby, their fingers move in a certain alienish way.

Right? Like they don't have much control yet. And they're just sort of moving rhythmically to their own beat. Right. And it made me nervous. It made me nervous watching her baby. And again, I grew up around babies. Like I always, if there was a baby in a room, give me your baby, I'm going to take your baby. I'm going to take care of your baby. You go do something else. All my life. I've been like that. Right. So to have that feeling upon seeing another child of family member, I just was like, oh, something's not right. And she needed me to show her where to change the baby's diaper. So I was like, yeah, sure. I show her where to go. And we're standing there and she's changing the diaper. She gets it all done. And she's like, here, do you want to hold her for a second? Like while she cleaned up everything, I was like, okay. And I tried not to freak out. And then, um, she's she started to fuss and I was like, oh, here's you go? She wants you, you know, like take her back.

Um, and then she left the room, I stayed in the room. I had to kind of gather myself. And I was like, I'm not going to cancel my appointment with the psychiatrist. Like, I don't know what is happening to me right now. I am not okay. I am not myself. Like this is not something I've ever experienced and truly it's something I've experienced since, you know, like that was a very singular moment of realization. And it was this beautiful four month old baby who made me realize, oh, you're not okay.

And I think what I'm learning right now is because obviously I did say, I don't know much about this, um, that how long it is that you can be in this state because now your son's 10 months. And I know you, you didn't really realize it to maybe nine months, but, but still you were having help at the time. Um, you're already seeing a psychologist, right? Yeah. And you were already in therapy, but you're still really dealing with a lot of these symptoms even a month or so out.

And so the, the timeline, you know, once again, postpartum depression, you're like, oh yeah, exactly. Like a few months or you get the help you need, you're done. But what you're saying, actually this is a long haul.

Well, it is a long haul. And what is really, really frightening as a statistic that I learned after writing my book. And it is that the most common time for, I think it's called well it's maternal suicide is 10 to 12 months postpartum depression. Wow. I was right in that window. And I had no idea until I was doing this research and I met someone who, um, she actually experienced postpartum psychosis.

So that's a whole other situation. Um, and I've learned so much from her as well, but the point is things get really bleak because you haven't recognized what's going on with you. And then you kind of get to that desperate point. Right. So I really, I am haunted by the fact that I was lucky enough to have those moments that made me realize I was not okay I didn't know that if I didn't have those moments if I didn't have the socks if I didn't have the family member and the friend that became mothers in November of that year.

And if I didn't have my cousin's daughter at Christmas that year, what if she hadn't come to Christmas? You know, like they could have gone somewhere else. I don't know. I would have recognized what was going on. I would have just continued to believe the lie that depression was telling me.

And scary and scary. Cause it could've taken you that depression could have told you lots of lies taking you down a road that was, you know, been a lot worse.

Yeah. Yeah. So it's very humbling and sobering and scary. And it really makes me feel for and has put me on this mission, right. To not only share my story but to, to talk to other people and check-in, like, it doesn't matter if it seems like you're okay. Cause I seemed very okay. But like to ask the real questions.

So what are those real questions? You know because a lot of us moms are listening and what are the real questions to be checking in with new moms or just moms?

Yeah. I think, um, when you're talking to a new mom, I think one of the things that people often say they lead you. Right. So instead of asking, how are you doing it? Are you loving it? Aren't you just loving it? Cause you're kind of enamored with the baby. Right. And they're focused on the baby or you know, how's the baby sleeping? No. How are you sleeping? How are you feeling? Um, when's the last time you got a shower?

Like when's the last time you felt like yourself? Like when you know these type of things that are just really specific to the mother, I feel like a lot of times we check in on the baby and we don't check in on the mom right after.

Yeah,that's such a good point. I remember having my baby and when people would come to the door, there was no hello to the mom and you're like, hi. And then I remember, I think it was my mother-in-law who turned and goes, oh, we forgot to say hi to the mom, but like in a cute way, that's like, oh wow. You're the only person who even acknowledged me at all today.

So true. So true. So you're saying, asking more to the mom, how are you? Are you sleeping? Did you shower?

And that can be with texts. You know, like I know, um, I had a friend that we both had our first child and then she had her second child. I knew that with her first child, she had had some trouble of the same sort, she had more anxiety issues, so not diagnosed, but she knew that something was not quite right. You know? Um, so I would just literally every day, Hey, how are you feeling today? And you know, really just every day I would send her some sort of text or some sort of meme or some sort of something to make her laugh, you know?

Like, and sometimes she would never respond or I'd follow up. You know what I mean? I feel like just checking in with the mom, um, about who they are beyond being a mom, I think is really helpful.

Yeah.

Cause it's such a shift, right? There's that term matrix. It's the birth of a mother, you know, your child is born, but a mother is born and we think about all the support we give to a newborn and all the things that they need. And as a mother, you need all that support too. You are also newly born.

Yeah. Well said, well said. What about red, red flags. Like if you're a friend and you're checking in, um, uh, are there any like red flags that you wish maybe someone saw in you at the time to say, Hey, I think you need to get checked now. Um, that you can point out for other parents.

That's a great question. I hid it really well. Right. But one of the things that I did hide was I stayed really busy. I had something going all the time. So like on Mondays I went to the movies cause there's this movie place you could go to. Right on Tuesdays, we had yoga on Wednesdays. We had, you know, it was just like, I filled my days and I think that's a very common thing. Right. But also like check-in, like, why are you filling your days?

Why don't you have any downtime now it's different right now. Listen, it's COVID times there, uh, there's a pandemic, that's still,  a factor for a lot of people. And I think that that's one of the scariest things coming out of this pandemic. I kept thinking about all these new moms, right.

Like not having support or anywhere to go. Um, so as far as like red flags, for me, that was a red flag is like how I literally didn't give myself a moment alone to be just with the child. You know, like if I was alone, that was probably not happening because I just needed any distraction, but it shows up differently on everybody. Right. So I think that if, you know, to ask, like, how are you feeling? Oh, I'm okay.

You know, what does okay mean? Like, I don't, it's hard. It's so hard. I just think that being present and being available conversation, honest conversation is going to be key. Right.

Right. And you're doing so much, I think for the cause, because, you know, writing your book and just even coming on today and all the other podcasts and things that you've been on, you know, just bringing awareness to the conversation so that people feel more comfortable just talking about it.

Yeah. And I do think people are talking about it more, which is such a wonderful thing. Like Meghan Markle coming out, literally I on CBS Sunday morning on mother's day, um, Gweneth Paltrow was on and she was doing this little thing about how her daughter is turning 18 and the time goes really quickly. And she was saying that when her daughter was born, it was wonderful. But when her son was born, she had postpartum depression and she just said it very bluntly. I was like, oh, she's talking about it.

Like having those high-profile women talk about it. Um, I think helps other people to just realize that, oh, I'm not the only one experiencing this. Like, oh, it's okay to talk about it. And I feel like, um, you having me on to talk about it and doing these types of shows right. Where we all can find out that we are not alone. It's such an important thing for mothers everywhere.

Yes. Yes. Um, now you went on to have another child, so you have two kids, right?

I do. 

I was gonna say, cause I mean, listening to this experience, I'll have to say, I don't know if I want to do round two. How did that work for you?

Yeah. So,that's kind of the beyond, right? 

Oh, so the beyond is the journey of once I figured out I had postpartum depression, once I figured out my, my motherhood experience and I've always wanted a big family. I always wanted to have multiple children. And when my son was born, I had such a hard harrowing time. I thought I'd never want to do this again. He's going to be an only child. But once I got treatment and felt like, okay, I'm in a better place.

Now it was around when he was around two years old, um, I was like, you know let's do this. Let's try. And so we tried and I got pregnant and I had a miscarriage. And after that, it was not certain that I was going to be able to conceive again, like it seemed like I wasn't obsoleting and I was doing all the ovulation kits and trying to figure that all out.

But you know, spoiler alert, I did get pregnant again in the end. So, that was another thing I just never thought I would experience with my, with my son. I got pregnant first try. And so I just assumed they would be easy for me. And now having gone through my own fertility, um, journey, I wouldn't call it issues. I never had to actually receive any fertility treatments. And I have many friends who have gone through that, that journey.

And it's really, really, I don't want to compare what went through to theirs cause that's a whole other thing. We don't talk about enough.

Yeah.

Yeah. Um, so many women have to deal with that. So I don't want to minimize, or I don't want to exaggerate what I went through, but I did feel well enough to try again. And we got pregnant again. And the second time I got pregnant after my son was born, I had a panic attack and thought, what am I doing? This is the dumbest thing I've ever done. Like, why am I trying to have another baby? Like my son is potty trained now. And I had had a miscarriage.

And what if I have another miscarriage? And you know, like just sort of, kind of spiraled. And, but here's the good news I had a therapist already lined up. So after my son was born, we ended up moving to Florida,  when he was about a year and a half years old.

And, and the first thing I did when we moved was found a psychiatrist because I knew I was going to be weaning off the medication that I was on for my postpartum depression. Um, so I need a doctor to help me through that. And then I also knew that if I ever have another child, it is, uh, increased likelihood statistically that I would experience postpartum depression again. So I knew that I wanted to have all my ducks in a row.

I wanted to know that someone was there that knew my history and that could help me, um, navigate that. So, um, I called her right away and we set up some time and she said, you know, that was the depressive mind talking about, thinking about all the things that could go wrong. And what about asking the question? What if it goes right?

What a great question.

Oh, that was such a switch for me. Like I literally had never considered it.

After what I've gone through. I can't think about what if it goes, right. So I think for so long, I had only thought about things going right. And I felt like such a far fall from that I was scared to think that way again, I'm happy to say that we had a plan, it put into action, um, about how to approach if I did experience any postpartum depression with my second child who was a daughter. Um, and I did not experience postpartum depression the second time around.

I was medicated though, so there were choices, you know, I could have gone on medication while I was pregnant. I could wait until after she was born and decide if I needed medication or I could to take a very low dose dose, like right when she was born. So with the depression medication I was on, which was Zoloft, it does need some time to build in your system. Um, so I wanted to have a low dose as kind of a base so that if things started to get dark again, we could increase my dosage and it wouldn't take as long to go into effect.

But I literally, it was almost like a placebo, the dosage I was on, but it was enough for me, whether it was a placebo effect or it really did help sort of balance my brain and hormones enough. Um, I did not experience it with my second child. So that is, I got to experience both, which is such an interesting dichotomy right of, I know what healthy motherhood looks like now.

And I know what unhealthy motherhood looks like and not to say that I would want to experience it the unhealthy again, but  in a way, for lack of a better word, grateful because I do have that insight now. And I do have that empathy towards mothers that I never would have known to have.

If I didn't experience it. 

So what would you say was the most helpful thing going through this whole process, knowing what you've been through? What was the most helpful thing in this process?

Oh gosh. I mean the most helpful thing was therapy.  Everyone should have a therapist. I think every mother should be assigned a therapist like at the hospital, like, okay, here's your person you're going to talk to. And I'm not joking.

Oh, therapy is good. I think there's a stigma around therapy. Right? Uh, it depends where you are. Right. I'm originally from New York. Right. And I lived in Manhattan for quite awhile. I'm out in Colorado now, but in New York, I mean, everybody had a therapist in this city. I mean, it was almost like my husband was like, what do you mean? You don't have a therapist? I'm like, I got to go get a therapist. I don't even know what I'm talking about, but I need a therapist. Yeah.

Well checkups, why wouldn't we have, uh, a therapist while we're well, like that is the point, right. Is to keep us well,.

We have mental health, and well checkups.

Oh my gosh. I think we need to like start a movement right now a bill about mental health well checkups. And if they're not working on that right now, then they should, because it shouldn't be, I tell you, if you have that, then you probably are not going to get as sick either. So the most helpful thing was your therapy.

Yeah. I think, I mean, yeah, definitely.

About your book. Your book is awesome. I'm excited to actually listen to it. Cause it's coming out on audio. So when does it come out on audio?

So I'm hoping it's going to be, you know, we had a little bit of a technical delay, so I'm still shooting for a June release. So I'm really hoping that it's going to be ready in June. And if it's not ready in June, stay tuned. It will be here this summer.

But it is, but it is out and you can actually buy it. You can buy the hard copy and it's on Kindle too. So you can get that right onto your device if you want it to.

I do love audio books? Because I love to listen to them as I drive or clean is a big thing is the cleaning. Cause I get a little bitter, I'll be honest with cleaning. And for some reason, if I have a book on, I'm not.

Like, oh, I will clean all day.

Yeah.

What is the biggest message you would like to leave for the listeners today?

The biggest message I want to leave is that if you ever have found yourself thinking that babies are the worst, you're not the only one who is thought that you are not a monster and you are totally normal. Like it's a really, really hard time, new motherhood. Now, whether you'd say you're new to being a mother or just new to having a child, another child, it's not, um, you can get postpartum depression, whether it's your first child or your 10th child, it doesn't make a difference.

Um, basically the pre existing condition for having postpartum depression is having a child and also it can show up in, um, the partner as well, lesser known fact. Yes. Uh, it can show up in the partner. Um, so it's not just a hormone related thing. So I just want to let everyone know that having a baby is hard work. It's the hardest job. Um, it can be the most joyful thing and it can be the most challenging.

So, um, don't be afraid to admit to yourself or to others that you're having a hard time.

Yes. Yes. And, you're not definitely not because You are not alone.

It is literally the dedication in my book. You are not alone.

And you shared so much with us already, but I'm going to ask you, what is your favorite parenting resource?

Ooh, my favorite parenting resource. I'm going to say music together. Do you know about music?

It's like a kids class.

Yes. So it's an early childhood music development program for newborns to age five. And I actually own my own center. Um, and I teach music together. So I have a license to teach it. Um, and I've been teaching for like seven years now, but what I love about music together is one it's incredibly, well-researched, it's really fun. You meet weekly with these families who all have kids around the same age as you.

And I think that to me, like there's one class in particular I like to teach, which is called the babies class and it's for eight months and younger. And I feel like it's this perfect marriage of my postpartum mission of bringing people together and having a place to go and having a place to be around other people who are in the same stage of life that you're in, but it's not like, oh, I'm going to a therapy group, but it is kind of like a therapy group. You get to go and like be around other people and meet them.

Yeah.

So I love it.

I did take my kids to music together when they were younger. Um, and I enjoyed those classes as well. So that's a great parenting resource. I love that.

And they're everywhere. So like, you know, you just go to that music together.com and put in your zip code and you can find a center that's near you and you can play and have fun. And I don't know. I just think it's a cool resource though.

Yeah. And my heart really warms that you said that you love teaching the baby class.

Because of your story that you told us today and the panic attack at that four month old, and it is the baby classes that  you love the most. So that is such a full circle.

Really it gives people hope because I, uh, I love it. It's my favorite thing really is.

Well, thank you so much for sharing your story. You know, I know that your message is just helping so many women out there, um, that are going through postpartum depression. So thank you for sharing your story, writing your book and just telling other parents that they're not alone going through this. It was so helpful. And I learned just so much. So thank you.

Thank you so much. Thanks for having me.

Thank you for listening to this episode.

I'm so honored to have Meagan share her personal story with us and educate us on postpartum depression. And we learned today that the signs might not be as obvious as we thought. Let's keep asking our fellow moms how they're doing, and if you need support, please come join us on our Facebook group. And don't forget to check out Megan's book. Babies are the Worst, A Memoir about Motherhood, PPD and Beyond. And of course, don't forget to follow ReaL Life Momz so you don't miss an episode.









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Meagan Gordon Scheuerman

Author

Meagan Gordon Scheuerman lives in Florida with her husband and two ridiculously cute children. Before penning her first memoir, she worked as an actor in NYC and LA for over a decade, played on a few game shows, and did some random modeling. She’s likely been in your living room without you realizing it. She grew up in Ft. Pierce, FL, graduated from the University of Florida, and is finally putting her English degree to use. These days you can find her teaching music to babies and toddlers, chasing her own kids around, and still dreaming of getting her Oscar one day.