For those know me well, you know I have battled anxiety for several years. I have tried both holistic and western medicine to aid in my anxiety. After a ton of research and struggles I finally gave in and started taking medication.
For those who know me really really well, you also know that I’m a hypochondriac. Taking pills is not my forte. To keep my anxiety under control, my doctor prescribed Zoloft for me. I would break my already small dose of Zoloft, into fourths. I don’t recommend doing this without your doctor knowing. Since I was a frequent visitor to the doctor, he wasn’t surprised at my own self-dosage program.
First of all, my anxiety was bad. Sometimes, my anxiety attacks hit me out of nowhere and would last for three to four hours. Anyone who has anxiety knows it feels much longer than that. I let it take over my life. So much, that it prohibited me from doing things I normally do. Traveling was out of the question. Being left alone? Forget it. I was not only ruining my own life, but it was starting to affect my relationship with Doug. I finally had to do something, anything. But nothing seemed to help until the Zoloft. I don’t know why I fought it for so long. The Zoloft worked very quickly. I was able to see things much clearer and start working on the damage the anxiety had caused.
When Doug and I decided we were ready to expand our family, that’s when I started cutting up my pills. Again, I can’t stress enough that this is NOT recommended. However, I did this over a long period of time. I didn’t want to be on any medications while trying to get pregnant. Once I was off the medication completely, I kept waiting and waiting for an anxiety attack. I have been off the medication for almost a year and I am still waiting. I’m not cured by any means, I still have issues. But (so far) I am attack free.
I am fearful that my anxiety is going to come back full force sometime during the pregnancy. We discussed this with our doctor. He let us know that, if needed, I can go back on Zoloft at any time. But I want a birth as natural as possible. This is why we have decided to hire a Doula to be there for us for the birth of our daughter. I’ve done extensive research, and feel this will be best for us.
I’m going to try my best to go natural, with the realization that it may not happen. But, at least we will have extra support from someone trained to work with people like us. Having a baby isn’t just about me, it’s about Doug too. I want him to have the best possible experience. This is where our Doula comes in. I really let go of the worry and extra stress of labor knowing that I will have someone there to support both of us.
If you don’t know, a Doula is a professional who provides emotional, professional, and physical support during and after labor. She does not provide any medical support. She just compliments the labor process. She makes sure that both my needs, and Doug’s are taken care of. Our doctor is a big fan of Doula support. He was the one who referred several Doulas to us.
I may still be crazy for wanting a natural childbirth. I’m sure my sister already started a pool on how long I’ll last before I give in and start screaming for an epidural. But for some reason, I don’t feel scared about the birth anymore. I actually feel empowered and positive about having a baby.