I just started reading through some of the posts and they sound as though I could have written them. My son is 8 months old; is still EBF and I work nights as an RN. I haven't slept more than 4 consecutive hours since before my second trimester and I have wished, at least once a day since my son developed "colic" at 2.5 months, that I could just be dead and done with this life.
I used to love being outside. I moved to my home so that I could do the things I enjoy year-round. Now I cannot do any of them. I am fat, out of shape and exhausted. I don't have time for anything I enjoy; I read board books instead of novels, I walk a stroller instead of run, I do short day hikes instead of backpacking alone for a week with my dog, I cook 5 minute meals instead of experimenting with my cookbooks, I ski for 1 hour instead of loading up and going backcountry for the day, I have a thousand half-finished craft projects around my house because he doesn't nap well and by the time he goes to sleep I am too exhausted to finish any of them.
All of my friends do not have kids and do not understand why I am so lonely and despondent. A few of my husband's friends have kids but are part-time breast-feeders or formula feeding, like to tell me about when their MD turned off the epidural so they could have a "natural" childbirth (however you deliver and feed your kids is between you and whatever god you believe in; I just mention this to explain why they do not quite relate to me. I have nothing against formula or pain meds - my choices are made based on what matters to me as an individual parent and I have nothing but respect for other moms out there doing the best they can for their babies) and told me about how they were depressed in the days after their baby was born but it went away or the antidepressants kicked in the same day (if you know anything about pharmacokinetics, they inexplicably take weeks to take therapeutic effect).
I saw a counsellor when my baby was 3 months old. She told me to let him CIO so I could sleep, and that it would get better - in a few years we'll be able to "ride bikes around the neighborhood." That afternoon I considered leaving my son with the neighbors until my husband got home and taking off so I could kill myself in peace because if a few bike rides was the only positive she could think of then I might as well give up. Every complaint I have - that he eats very few solids and tries to nurse constantly still, that he doesn't sleep, that he screams when I try to change his diaper, some well intentioned person tells me "It will get better." It has only gotten worse and worse and I no longer believe it will ever get better.
Becoming a mom has been the most isolating experience of my life. I love my boy and wouldn't give him back; but I wish I could go back in time and enjoy my life a little before he arrived because I am not sure I ever will again.
In all, I kind of just needed a safe place to vent.
It feels a little better to say it out loud (without hearing "oh yeah, mine used to wake up all night when he was a month old" or "I was depressed for a few days and then I realized I had been given the greatest gift and stopped feeling bad for myself - ou should be grateful.)
Thank you for this forum.