Oh Christina, I've been where you are. There were some days where I had a bag packed and my shoes on and the baby screaming in the crib. I always talked myself down, but I was ready to just go. And I hated being a mother, I thought I was a terrible mama, and a terrible person, and how come I couldn't do sanely and calmly what other parents could do (with ease and grace?) And now, three years later I wouldn't say I am healed all the way, but I am doing so much better, especially when it comes to the kids. I still am a crap household manager and housekeeper though - those are the things I chose to let go, in order to allow for lots and lots more me time. I just couldn't do it all, no one can, but especially not if you are struggling with PPD.
My DD was a screamer too (still is sometimes, though she's a sizzling firecracker of a human being, absolutely amazing little person) and it got to me. I've done a lot to try and lessen the screaming, because I knew how much it affects me - all the sacrifices and acrobatics to get her to sleep, spending all day, every day out of the house because she hated being cooped up at home, nursing every 45 minutes through the night until she was over 2, because otherwise, oy, the screaming. And now that I've had Oren, I know that it wasn't me. Or at least not all me. It has been so healing to really understand this, and I'm so glad I had him after so many days of wondering "Can I do this again? How can I do this again?"
I did intermittent therapy with DD, and kind of got lost in the system. I relied heavily on a local group called Pacific Postpartum society, who had group sessions and a help line. It helped, but really, it wasn't enough, because I wasn't doing it enough, it seemed like so much work. And if I could go back and do something differently, it would be to just take those meds already. I feel like I lost 2 years of my life, the first two years of my first baby's life, and maybe I could have had them if I had at least tried medication. But I was stubborn, having pulled myself out of a depression before, I thought I had it in me to do it again. And maybe I do, but I don't really know if it was worth it, because here I am, three years later still trying to keep my head above water. I'm in therapy now too, a little more regularly, and I often take BOTH kids with me to session. The therapist has toys in her office, so I figure I'm not the only one. I am going to stop going with DD soon though - she is too perceptive, and I don't want to weigh her down with my adult problems.
Anyway, for me the key to my improvement has been letting go of some things so that I can have lots of time for myself. I need lots of down time, lots of body free time, and lots of time to be creative. And my husband is super-dad, and tries to fill those blanks. And it's always during those intense-baby times like teething or illness that I start losing it, because I need to be doing babycare 24/7 and lose those times for me. I wish I had had the resources to hire a mother's helper and a housekeeper, since I didn't have the community support that I have now. But that's another huge difference for me this time around - I've worked hard to find a community these last 3 years.
Hugs, hugs, hugs mama. I know how far away it seems, when people talk about the future, but it does get easier. Hold on, hold on.