A lesson on living with the dark side of your psyche
I am a bubbly and optimistic person. Most days, I feel very hopeful and am able to take control of my thoughts.
Except when I love too hard.
Shortly after my daughter was born, I was diagnosed with postpartum obsessive-compulsive disorder. PPOCD manifests differently in the postpartum phase than regular OCD.
PPOCD is marked by intrusive, doom-filled thoughts of something bad happening to you or your baby.
I would picture very vivid scenarios of death, funerals, and injury. These thoughts were clear and very horror movie-like. It really impacted my experience as a first-time mother.
Thankfully, I no longer have these thoughts constantly. A combination of meds and therapy helped me get through this and my PPOCD is currently in remission.
When I look back, I’m not shocked that I developed this debilitating illness. My whole life, whenever I would be thinking about how much I love someone: A flash would happen in my brain and I would think about life without them.
Sometimes, I get very upset when our family is all together. For some reason, during a happy occasion, my mind goes to a very dark place. I fear losing my parents the most.
“These happy moments won’t last forever. Someday, we will be reminiscing about them, and they won’t be here”.
Living without my parents is something I dread. I can’t wrap my head around them not being here, navigating life with me.
From my phone calls with each of them daily to the love they always show to me, my husband, and our daughters: I am completely emotionally dependent on them.
To anyone who has lost their parents: you are the strongest person I have ever known, even if I have never met you.
Living With The Consequences of War
I don’t know why I’m like this. I work through a lot of this stuff in therapy but I don’t have a clear understanding of why I worry so much about the deaths of the people I love.