Post natal disturbance

I hope you had a nice chuckle at my last post  because you may find this one disturbing. Consider this fair warning.

Their nursery bathes in the soft glow of the late afternoon sun. I watch the impostors as they sleep, my shirt rigid from months of tears, my fragile mind crumbling in my dusty skull. They have sucked me dry and left me void, those greedy little leeches, how could they possibly be my sons?

I sit for an age, huddled in a shadowed corner, afraid to touch any of their belongings. They would be so mad at me if I touched their things.

Awake seconds apart, they begin to cry out for me. The noise of their shrill, demanding screams drills angrily into my head. I crawl into their closet for refuge and close the door behind me. Burying my head in my arms and rocking quietly in the darkness, I “shush” myself until calmness comes.

Time passes by, how much I can not say and the noise outside stops. I cautiously open the door and approach the boys’ cribs. They smile and laugh at me, tormenting me, I yell at them to stop being so awful, so evil. I fantasize about throwing them hard against the nearest wall and leaving them in a heap on the ground. Panic strikes, forcing my throat to burn and my head to spin. I turn and run for the phone to call my husband.

“It’s happening again” I whisper into the receiver. “I need to see a doctor!! I need some medication”.

“You know my family don’t believe in medicating” he told me. “Trust in our Lord and he will get you through”.

He swiftly hung up on me as he always does. The shun paralyses me. I let the receiver fall to the floor while reality slips away.

I sit soaking wet on cold tiles, hugging my knees as I stare at water dripping from my overfilled bathtub. I don’t need to peer over the edge to know what is in there. The house is so dark, so still and eerily quiet. I just sit in a catatonic state, waiting for someone to come and get me and take me away.

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13 responses to “Post natal disturbance

  1. This is phenomenal writing, as always! The ending is so chilling. The husband doesn’t exactly sound compassionate either, what a poo-head :<. I love the first paragraph, openings can be difficult to do well; I especially like how you referred to them as 'imposters'.

  2. I want to challenge you on the starkness of this, because I have a feeling it’s sooooo much more nuanced than this. that being said – I’m disturbed enough by it to have my cognitive dissonance kicking in – which means the intended effect has worked.

    I also think this topic is not spoken about, not given credence as a serious issue in our world, and the husband’s response is accurately, predictably, horrible. You instantly hate on him for being ignorant. but then aren’t we ignorant too?

    On the reread, I grasp what’s really happening in the last paragraph, and well… there’s that dissonance again, what a mess inside my head right now. good work.

    • I’m very proud to have made a mess in your head 🙂

      I imagine Postpartum Depression to be more a bit more “nuanced” than this, yes, but not Postpartum Psychosis. It affects 0.1-0.2% of new mothers and has a 4% infanticide rate and a 5% suicide rate.

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