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After My Second Baby, I Realized I Need Therapy

Photograph by Twenty20

I want to be a mom. I want to be a mom. I want to be a mom. I want to be a mom.

I have to repeat this over and over to myself many days. Lately, my children have been taking me there and there is a place that I don’t like being. There is an unhappy place that makes me lust after the days I had before kids. There makes me ungrateful and makes me want to leave the house and not return.

You’ve probably been there. You might be there. Sometimes I’m find that I’m there too often, and that’s why I, at 31 years old and for the first time in my life, I am going to get mental health counseling.

It feels weird typing it. I don’t want to make this into some big thing. But it is. I know it shouldn’t be, but when you’ve spent your entire life dealing with emotions by yourself, it’s a big deal. I wish I could pray and feel better about things. I wish talking always worked. I wish how I felt about some things went away.

It took awhile to get to this place, you know. The place of accepting that I need help.

That’s not how life works though. Right?

I’m a grown up. I’m a wife. I’m a mother. I’m a woman, and I need to sort out my feelings so that I can be a better everything to everyone—especially to myself.

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Don’t get me wrong: I'm not dealing with depression or anxiety. I'm not dealing with addictive behavior. I don’t consider myself to really be dealing with any textbook mental issues. But what do I know? I’ve spent many years and months just assuming that I’m like all moms: stressed out, tired, overworked. And I want to feel better. Don’t we all?

Who couldn’t use a day off from parenting? I mean, how do I know if I need mental health counseling or a freaking vacation away from my family?

I guess there’s only one way to find out.

As silly as I may sound, I’m excited to get help sorting out some concerns.

It took awhile to get to this place, you know. The place of accepting that I need help. I was raised by one of those “You’re a strong woman”-type moms. This woman hardly cried, if ever. She was stoic, strong and steadfast. My mom was such a superhero in my eyes—and if she could get through the craziness of raising kids, so could I.

Right?

But I’m not my mom. I’m not a superhero. These kids in all of their amazing ways have made me realize just how much I need to work on myself. Their sheer existence has brought about something within myself that I can’t even put into words. I never thought I had it together but birthing and raising kids has made me realize how much I don’t have it together. (It being a lot of things.)

As silly as I may sound, I’m excited to get help sorting out some concerns. I can’t wait to be the woman I know that I can be and without regrets. I can’t wait to be the wife and mother and hardworking lady that I know I’m meant to be. In some ways, I’m grateful that my kids drove me to this place.

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Thanks, kids. Thank you for helping Mama realize how much she needed mental health counseling. I mean it.

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