Having suffered quite severe anxiety in the past, one of the strategies I've learned that helps me cope is to "ignore it" and not put too much focus on it (it WILL NOT define me!). However, sitting in an isolated room for three days (hospital) and dealing with a (albeit gorgeous) newborn, as well (of course) as having given birth three days ago has led to a rush of a feeling I thought I'd left well behind.
What will define me though is how I deal with that feeling. Because, when you've been there before, the neural pathways are just beckoning you to take the same, tired old routes "come on, old friend!" they cry "you know how to do this!" Yes, I do. I know how to be anxious; I know how to be depressed and I know how to give in. It's easier to sink into the mire than to struggle and pull yourself free.
But who wants to be pulled under a muddy bog?
From time to time on forums (etc) I see people dealing with the kind of anxiety I've suffered in the past. And, pulling out my trusty "toolkit", I try to help. So here's my strategy for ensuring the baby-blues are just that - a short period of adjustment as my hormones settle...
1. Make-up and hair done everyday (seems shallow but it's a message to yourself that you're worth the effort.
2. Be a busy-body - shouldn't be too hard to occupy myself.
3. Be creative - sap those creative resources by doing something positive with them, rather than dwelling on the negative.
4. Exercise - staggering round the block with the pushchair.
5. Don't talk about it - sometimes it isn't "good to talk" - be upbeat and have fun with the kids...
6. Focus on "today" - don't let attention wander too far into the future... The future is always scary if we think about it too much.
So there you have it!
It's not that I'm properly suffering from anything, it's more that a slight niggle of something long forgotten has surfaced and - if you're anything like me - you'll understand the need to be vigilant...
In more attractive news...
Girdle update: I GOT IT ON!!
After receiving some advice on my blog(!) I tried again to leap into my stomach firming friend. And with some success, and one unexpected benefit!
I wriggled in again, using the same tired old moves... Beige panty bit dragged over wibbling thighs... Then, with a deep breath, I peered over the deflated pudding of my stomach and reached for the tiny hooks.
With some effort, I stapled myself into the thing, took a step back and admired my handiwork.
Without said girdle, my body looks "OK" except for the tummy area. With said girdle, I looked kind of sausage-like - portly, stocky and shapeless... However, once on, my back suddenly sighed with relief (no I didn't let off wind - it's metaphorical you fool!). I hadn't realised my back was at all uncomfortable, but it was as if the girdle had shifted its position into the position it was "meant to be" in, and I felt really well supported.
Then, the orderly came in with my dinner, so I thought better than to challenge the little hooks and slithered out of the thing before tucking in.
I should be going home later today, after which it's GIRDLE CITY! Just call me "Mrs Sausage" (actually... don't).