While at the library before our vacation I looked through the shelf with “new releases” and spotted Dooce’s book, which has been on my “to read” list since I heard about it. I love her blog, her honesty, her humor, her insights on parenting and marriage. Also her dog Chuck. I love a good memoir, and this one did not disappoint. Heather chronicles her pregnancy and her post-partum depression and anxiety that landed her in a psych unit for 4 days. This was a fast read and an enjoyable one. Heather is brutally honest about the physical and emotional changes she went through when she became a mom. She is not afraid to tell you EVERYTHING and admit her own flaws and the frustrations that come along with being the caretaker of a baby 24/7. I especially loved her openness about her battle with anxiety and depression. She battled the guilt, the feelings of failure, and the criticism of others when she chose to seek medication, therapy, and eventually hospitalization for her struggles. Not easy choices, but ones that women tend to keep to themselves for fear of being judged. I could relate to her struggle to admit she needed professional help for her anxiety, and the difficulty in accepting that you may always need to be medicated to keep your brain chemistry in balance.
We are not having kids anytime soon but it was still good to read Heather’s experience of becoming a new mom, parts definitely made me happy we are not jumping into that crazy game anytime soon, but excited at the same time. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that has struggled with PPD or would like a better understanding of what coping with it is like. Heather’s story does an amazing job at normalizing this all too common disorder.