Dear parent trying to adjust to postpartum life during the COVID-19 pandemic,
I’ve drafted and deleted several posts over the past few days. I’ve tried to find the right words. Words to offer validation for the wide range of emotions you’re likely feeling. And words that will offer hope for the future. I’ve typed lists of tools and strategies that might help you trudge your way through the emotional side of your postpartum recovery. And then I deleted them all.
The truth is there is nothing I can say that seems to truly honor your experience or adequately convey the devastation and heartbreak I am feeling for you right now. I can only begin to imagine how hard the road is you’re walking. How different it looks than the one you had mapped out. Your grief over what you’ve lost, big and small, matters. This is not fair. This is hard. It’s true that parenthood is hard, no matter when it happens to us, but it’s especially hard right now.
While I believe the day for healing and hope will come, today it feels more appropriate to just sit in the pain, trauma and overwhelm with you. I see you and my heart aches for you. No matter how alone you may feel, please try to remember that there are fellow parents around the world, holding space for you in their hearts, and collectively willing you to take all of the time you need to heal and recover from this experience.
My hope and prayer for you is that you will allow yourself to feel your feelings, honor them by offering yourself whatever self compassion you can muster and ask for help if you need it. If you can find the courage to allow others to sit in the darkness with you (virtually, for the time being), the light will eventually seep back in.
With an ache for you in my soul and an abundance of love for you in my heart,
About the writer
Anne Russey is a licensed professional counselor based in Katy, TX and offering online counseling throughout the state of Texas. Specialized services include anxiety treatment, postpartum depression treatment, postpartum anxiety treatment and counseling for moms. Anne Russey is an LGBTQ+ affirming therapist.
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