So let me begin. November 13th, 2017 is the day that Kahea was born. She was born in the morning...a perfect 6 lbs 9 ounces and 21". She became my everything. We spent every single second together, waking and sleeping for months. We would walk around Manayunk, visit Dada working at the coffee shop, visit friends, do some work, talk to each other, play together, and of course eat together. Kahea was breast fed and cloth diapered until my world turned upside down. It seems like it happened so fast, but my downward spiral was a slow couple of months. It started with the house, as laundry and dishes piled up and dog poop collected in the backyard (gross...I know). As the cleanliness of my house decreased, so did my mental health. I later found out that the condition of the home has a lot to say about your health. That was the first sign.
The second sign was me not wanting to socialize.
The third sign was me not wanting to leave the house.
It seemed like it was only a matter of time before I became so depressed that all of my hope left me and I was left feeling like a total failure...and I just wanted to die. This is hard for me to write about but if it helps even one person then it makes it all worth it. You see, there is a stigma around mental health and people think that it is something you can control if you only "think positive" or "get over it" or "realize that people have it worse than you do". I heard one or more of these statements from loved ones, I won't tell you which or who. Anyway, I quickly learned that statements like that only made it worse. It's like telling someone who is angry "Don't be mad" or someone who is anxious, "Just stop being anxious" like it's something you can control.
What came next is something so terrifying, I still can't believe it happened. I tried to kill myself. Multiple times.
The only reason that I am here to tell my story is because I used to work in the Firearms Identification Unit with the Philadelphia Police Department and I didn't want the evidence to get back to my old coworkers. I'll leave you to put two and two together.
So I tried hanging myself instead in the basement of our Manayunk home. I was unsuccessful. I can still hear the voice of the baby coming from upstairs (she was safe in her bassinet). Why would I want to kill myself with such a beautiful gift lying just two flights of stairs above me? Because I felt like I was failing her as a mother. She was breastfed for just short of 5 months before I started losing my milk. I was not able to eat or drink without feeling nauseous and I started to have issues sleeping (which I had never had before). I thought I was pregnant. The thought of having another baby in the mental state that I was in was terrifying. Enough that I looked up "natural" ways to abort a baby. Now I am a Christian and would have never thought about aborting a precious gift of life but now you can understand where I truly was mentally.
I'm crying as I write this because I can still feel the pain of feeling empty and numb. Like there was a void in my heart and my life that couldn't be filled. I was surrounded by people who loved me on a daily basis yet I felt so alone. Like no one cared.
Just a few days later, with the shame felt by not completing the task that I set out to do,..