I sat in the middle of a year’s worth of our lives scattered across the basement floor. I carefully studied each moment captured on film searching for that one perfect picture that would exude the feel of my new blog, All Work And No Play Makes Mommy Go Something Something.
“I know which picture you should use”, came from the strong voice in the doorway. Shawn walked in and took a spot next to me on the floor and began leafing through the stacks of pictures.
“Here. This one.”
I immediately smiled.
I remember that day. Over breakfast I told Shawn that I had desperately craved escape from life and that I just wanted to get in the car and drive. “Where to?” he surprisingly said, and in a short few hours, we had packed a few days worth of clothing and drove up to the cottage.
We left our problems far behind.
On our way there, we passed a small park that was mostly vacant except for the seagulls and the whimsicle cement characters that decorated the lawn. I remember telling Shawn to turn around so that we could stop there. When I stepped out of the car, I was greeted by a chill in the early June air as the wind blew over Lake Huron. The sun shone brightly and warmed my cheeks.
The park itself wasn’t very big. There were a few swings rusted with age and years of use, two slides, and in the middle of the park there was this bouncy teeter-totter contraption that I couldn’t resist. I remember taking a seat with Chunky, Shawn on the other end, and we bounced. For some reason, it was the funnest thing I had done in a long time.
”This is a pretty fun picture eh?”
“This is my favourite picture that I’ve ever taken of you. It was the first time in the 8 months after you were diagnosed with postpartum depression that you smiled.”
“No it wasn’t. I’ve smiled in tons of pictures.”
“No. No. This picture was the first time that you smiled from your soul. This was the first time that I saw my wife and my best friend shine through all the tears and pain and facades the illness created. This was the first time that I felt confident that you were going to survive and that we were going to make it.”
I sat there speechless clutching the photo as tears welled in Shawn’s eyes.
“This is the one.”
And I couldn’t have agreed more.
Every time I look at that picture, I’m reminded of how far I have come in this battle with postpartum depression. It reminds me that there are women out there at this exact moment who are walking in the very same shoes I once wore.
They are looking for the answers, for help, but mostly for hope.
And my hope is that this picture inspires at least one woman to have the courage to ask for help because this illness, this monster postpartum depression can be defeated.
And that the photo instills hope in her heart that she will find herself again.
*Prompt: I’m inspired by…(photo journal entry)
A special thanks goes to Stephanie at Genie Girl Graphics for making my hub of the Blogsphere all pretty.