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My girls have left their mark- on my face

Just out of the shower. I’ve never been good at makeup so I embrace my spots.

Some moms deal with the pregnancy mask during pregnancy. Some of us wear it long after that baby is on our hip. After each pregnancy my spots got darker and more abundant. I can spend one day in the sun for an hour and new spots will make their home on my face. The vain 20-something kid in me hates it. The mother in me embraces it.

I think we’ve all got something we want to hide postpartum. For some of us it’s physical like the spots on our faces, the stretch marks, or the extra baby weight. For others it’s internal like depression or anxiety. I can’t speak to postpartum depression and anxiety because I didn’t live it. I’m not going to attempt to address it because I have too much respect for the misunderstood mother who is trying to survive it. All I can say to you is that you’re not alone and you do not need to go through this yourself- there are other moms out there just like you who want to help, so please let them.

I lived in fear of my second child dying because she periodically stopped breathing as an infant, so I had my own form of depression from lack of sleep, constant fear and anxiety from trying to keep her alive, and her suffering cries. I remember how slowly the minutes passed when she was screaming in pain from the pure caffeine we had to give her. I will never forget the first mad dash to the hospital when she was 3 days old and I found her choking on phlegm turning blue in our living room. Or the sound of the alarm from her sleep monitor, blaring and jolting me from my two hours of nervous, light sleep, frantically feeling my way in the dark, tearing through the room to jolt her back, praying she’d wake up. I willed for the days to pass more quickly, praying she’d “grow out of it” already since no one could tell me why or when. It was a dark time and I was in a dark place.

I’m no stranger to fear and anxiety and at first I didn’t let people help me. I suffered in silence. When I finally got the courage to open up, the outpour of love and support from my church gave me strength and comfort to keep going. They came to visit to check in on me, friends came to let me nap peacefully while they watched over the baby, they made me food that followed my crazy, strict breastfeeding diet, and word spread until people were praying around the globe for baby Elena and me.

Whatever trauma we have lived through pregnancy or postpartum, it has marked us. For some, you can see it on our faces or bodies. For others, it’s unseen and they’re suffering in silence. Whether your marks from your children are visible or not, remember that it was worth it. The baby on your hip or the sticky toddler hand in yours is worth suffering for, but you don’t have to suffer alone.

If you have a resource or story to share, please leave a comment or start a forum in order to support each other.

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Yesenia Krouth
Yesenia Krouth
Aug 28, 2022

I love that you're sharing all these moments, details and experiences. I wish I would've had a Brooke back in my day when my kids were little. Maybe there was, but I felt alone since my friends had their kids in there 20's and I had mine in my early mid 30's. My son is now almost 13 and my daughter is 9 going on 18 : )

The challenges & worries are different now- but no less scary or exhausting. I do my best to embrace every new stage they're in. I am on "older mom", so the combination of menopause & puberty is not easy on anyone at this household. You are so right- having other moms th…

Brooke Ramos
Brooke Ramos
Aug 28, 2022
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Yesenia! I absolutely appreciate you writing a comment! Sometimes I wonder if taking the time (read- time away from my girls) to share my story is worth it, but if even one mom is encouraged through this I will keep writing. You’re right, the stages change, but it doesn’t get any easier. You just gotta find your tribe, they’re out there. For my 4th the doc was calling me geriatric. I gave him the same look I give my girls when they talk back- flaming darts of “oh no you didn’t”. Most of my friends are starting their families later in life, so this combo of menopause and puberty will be very common. When we get there we’ll be …

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