Cristina, Donovan, and I went into town this morning to meet up with the baby talk group I've been going to sporadically the past year. I saw some new people there, and some old people I haven't seen in a while, and D seemed to enjoy hanging out at the park and trying to grab at the grass and another mom's white crocs. We stayed in town for a few hours after that, grabbing a panini and some mini quiches for lunch and then walking around without too much of a plan. The weather was fabulous, if a bit on the warmish side, but definitely a pretty great summer day. It's been so so so nice to get a break from all the rain.
After we got home and while D was napping I managed to find an old childhood friend of mine on facebook, and also look at pictures of my Chilean cousin's baby girl, born maybe a few weeks before D. Ah, then wonders of facebook! Sure, it may bring you across all sorts of acquaintances from high school that you don't necessarily want to keep in touch with, but it also helps you connect with long lost friends you'd all but lost hope of finding again.
And then by chance and on a whim I found myself looking through the Dooce archives from 2004, back when Leta was about D's age-- and when Heather was dealing with her postpartum depression. And it reawakened thoughts I've been having lately wondering about whether what I felt in the months after D was born was just normal "baby blues" or if it was more than that. I don't really know where the lines are drawn or what the different labels really mean in the end. It "went away" on its own, and I didn't lose interest in activities I normally enjoy (as can be seen by my still-regular blogging), nor did I cry all the time or show many other classic symptoms of depression. But I certainly felt anxious and overwhelmed a lot, weighed down by the immense responsibility we had bourne. I know that what I felt is very normal for many mothers. I also know that many other mothers seem to have it much easier, or at least handle things better. I have only ever become a new mom once, and my only experience is the one that I went through, so it's impossible for me to truly compare it to what other mothers feel and go through or what "normal" might be. And I don't know if it really matters to put a category on it after the fact, as that doesn't change anything about the experience itself. But it's something I've been mulling around in my head some lately, I guess maybe since it's safe to do so now that everything seems so immensely better and those days that at times felt so suffocating are behind me.
So as not to end this post on such a strange note, I will leave you with a picture of my darling boy, who these days I cannot seem to stop gazing at in wonder. I wish there were a way for him to understand how much joy he brings to so many people already, just by being his sweet little self.