By Nicole DeSantis
Pregnancy was hard, real hard. I had no control over my body and even worse no control over my mind. The hateful and shameful thoughts that came across me were terrifying. I hated what was inside of me and hated myself for feeling that way. Medication is what saved me from having these thoughts throughout my pregnancy. Was I selfish for trying to take care of myself so I can take care of my child? Those were the type of questions that I would ask myself. Even though the medication I was taking was monitored by my doctor, I still felt like I was poisoning both mine and my baby’s bodies. I was usually such a strong willed person and did not care what other people thought, but I was getting defeated by my own thoughts and I was so ashamed by it. My body was creating a new life and I never felt so weak in my life.
Flash forward to 16 months later and not only have I controlled my intrusive thoughts and anxiety, but I am a loving and caring mother to my son Franco. He is perfect in every way. Thick, dark curly hair, big deep brown eyes and this kid can laugh for days! It is so contagious he puts a smile on everyone’s face. I never felt this kind of love before, but I will catch myself staring at him trying to find any flaws that were caused by me. Did the medication I took while pregnant do more harm than I thought? Guilt still haunts me and I feel responsible for anything that may seem atypical.
Motherhood is hard, real hard. I have to constantly tell myself that I am doing the best that I can and if I want my son to be healthy, I need to take care of myself first so I am healthy. I may have my anxiety under control now, but that does not mean that I always will. I am thankful for having access to the tools that helped me cope during one of the scariest times of my life. The guilt is fierce, but I am thankful.