People’s opinions on my ability to parent impacted my mental health
My pregnancy was a bit difficult because nobody believed in me to be a good mom. No one felt as if I was capable of taking care of my own child even though I’ve always taken care of my sibling, they had no faith. However, a part of me understood where they were coming from. Going from being a free, unreliable, and nonchalant teenager to a mother was even hard for me to visualize.
I questioned myself A LOT.
Would I be a good mom?
Will I be able to be a mom period?
My previous experiences with depression worried my family – and me
I suffer from depression and some people kept worrying that I would suffer postpartum depression.
Between mood swings, family issues, and relationship issues I was pretty much over being pregnant towards the middle of my pregnancy. I remember being 6 months pregnant and I just wanted Logan out. The stress I encountered when I was pregnant was in no way good for my Logan or myself for that matter.
No matter how much I verbalized how anxious, ready, and over the stress of pregnancy and family I was deep down scared out of my mind to give birth. Some women make childbirth sound like a horror movie. I would often wonder how children rip you and cause so much agony.
Giving birth to my son
In my case, Logan was feeling things that I wasn’t so my experience wasn’t filled with physical agony.
My contractions were coming fast but I was okay. Logan on the other hand was experiencing his heart rate drop with every contraction. I could only pray that God take the pain from him and put it onto me. I was worried about Logan’s health and told them I wanted to get a cesarean. The medical staff was not happy about me saying this. They kept trying to make me have a vaginal birth but if my son was in so much danger I wanted to do what I felt was right for him.
They tried to make me feel bad because I was willing to do a c-section but I was willing to compromise my health for my child. From that moment on this mom thing came pretty natural to me. Putting my wants and needs last to satisfy my newborn was very bittersweet but worth it.
Depression, a New Born, Societies Views, and My Reality
This may sound bad but it took me a while to get used to Logan.
If I could go back in time and do it all over again, I think the only thing I would change is how I hesitated so much to give my son my love because I was afraid I met the stereotype of young Black teenage mothers and that put me in a place I never want to go back to. My mind fought itself all the time thinking whether or not I would meet the criteria of other people’s opinions about what a mother should look like.
Once I was able to fully understand that people’s opinions on me and my skills as a mother mean nothing, I started to really open a portal of mother inside of me. I guess that just means I was able to better myself for my Logan. He is the best thing that God could’ve done for me so far in life.
My mental health and motherhood now
Despite every difficulty I faced whether it was my own depression or people telling me I wasn’t ready for a child, I always made sure I went above that obstacle to prove to myself before anyone else that I deserved the titled I now have. I deemed myself worthy of loving being called someone’s mother. Before my depression would eat me to the point where I’d isolate my entire existence from everyone, including my son. From then to now I’ve had such an amazing turnaround. I’m able to completely understand and cope positively so that I can continue my day and find ways to better improve my state of mind.
Love is something you have to learn how to do; with every new person in your life. Logan taught me things I wouldn’t have learned without him. Nothing in life is coincidence. God loves effortlessly and he teaches us to do the same in his own ways.
Deja Jones is a New York City based young mom and writer. “I am just a young woman trying to find my path.“