Posts Tagged ‘ taking antidepressants when pregnant ’

My Favorite Blog Posts of 2012

Sunday, January 6th, 2013

It’s 2013. Time to toot my horn! Time to tell you my favorite blogs that I wrote from 2012. This, in hopes you have so much free time, you’ll dive in and read all of them! Yes, I’m starting off the New Year giving you work and working on my own issue with modesty (screw those resolutions).

In all honesty, I’m going to throw my editor, Sherry, under the bus and tell the truth: She asked me to give a list of my favorite blog posts from last year. I’m not saying this to brag, but it was actually really hard to choose. Do I go funny? Serious? Newsy? Controversial? Each post I do is so personal and most of them I really try and put something out there that I feel strongly about. Whether by humor or conviction.

In the end, I picked a variety of subjects and tone. The ones I left out, but am still really glad I wrote (in case you feel like getting extra credit) are the saddest. The nanny who allegedly stabbed two kids to death, the Connecticut Shootings, the Penn State (my alma mater) molestation scandal. There actually is one that is incredibly sad that I did choose. But it’s a more personal sadness. You will know which one I’m talking about below. Here they are, in no particular order.

1. The Failure Hour. My most brilliant invention yet, and what I think every mom should do!

2. Fia Turning Three. Before you roll your eyes or skip over this one, I urge you to read it (assuming you have kids. Why else would you be reading my blog unless you’re really really bored?). It’s not just about Fia. It’s about the unquenchable love these babies bring to our lives.  And our quest to hold onto it. Tight.

3. Losing Justin. The magnitude of loss is still hard to fathom. Father of two young boys. Son to my Baba Yaga. My first cousin. When Justin was killed, so many hearts shattered. I would do anything to turn back time and say it isn’t so.  I want people to read this to understand how quickly life can change. And to send peace and light to all of us who will forever grieve his death.

4. Losing My Mom. I wrote this on the one-year anniversary of my mom’s death. It actually gave me great peace to write it and to know she is in a better place. Especially since much of her life was so tragic.

5. My Embarrassing Pregnancy Problem. Okay, this has the word “Ugly Vag” in the first sentence. How can you not be intrigued?

6. Should Depressed People Procreate? Hell yeah! I did and I have the happiest babies on the block.  Lots of judgment here from those who have never been depressed.

7. The Death of Rody. I’m happy to report we have a new one. He is blue. And he’s an indoor Rody now. This, after the still-mysterious toy killer hit our yard. Last night we saw SIX–yes SIX coyotes on our street. I have my suspicions…I’m thinking coyote puppies who are teething…

8. Homebirth–I Don’t Get it. And still don’t. But I will say I am lessening my judgement with baby #2 on a few things…like cosleeping. I still believe strongly in sleep training. But I do get on some level why people sleep with their babies–because they are delicious. I do it from time to time. And did quite a bit with Emmett for the first 8 months. I just think you have to have a baseline of good sleep, both yours and your baby’s, before you go down that road.

9. A Monkey Made Me Lactate. Enough said.

10. Why The Boob Rocks. You would think this post would have been well-received by most. But oh no. There is a line in there that stirred so much controversy, I had to open another bottle of wine while blissfully nursing Emmett. In fact, I got so drunk I passed out and decided to make drinking to oblivion while breastfeeding a nightly habit. In fact, I’m in a blackout now.

 

Blog icon courtesy of Shutterstock

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Should Depressed People Procreate?

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

 

Before Phil and I had kids, we used to joke that with our combined genes we shouldn’t procreate.  Depression runs on both sides. Autism runs on his. Bipolar and addiction are strong on mine. And we both suffer from mild depression/anxiety ourselves. But despite these “bad genes,” what we really meant was we didn’t want kids. It was our excuse to remain selfish over selfless.

Thank god we changed our minds, because being selfless is far more gratifying. Plus, we have still retained plenty of our selfish lifestyle. We do date nights. But instead of coming home to an empty house, we get to kiss our babies while they sleep. There is nothing finer. We still take trips–we just take them with us. And frankly it’s far more fun. We still hike. Only now we each have a baby on our back (probably a better workout anyway). The things Fia sees in nature and her delight in something as simple as a spider web makes it far more interesting. But I digress. That’s not the point of this post.

In a recent interview, Sarah Silverman said she doesn’t want to have children for fear of passing on the depressive/mentally ill gene. Some called her brave and responsible for this. I call it ridiculous.  An article in Time pointed out, rightfully so, that, “the same genes that can cause depression may also encourage the sensitivity and sensibility that gives Silverman her creative talent.”

Thank you!

I caused a decent amount of controversy when I wrote about my decision to stay on antidepressants while pregnant. Some called me selfish. Others said I shouldn’t procreate. But far more people came to my defense. Many were relieved to find they weren’t alone in their decision to do the same. Plus, studies show the drugs I am/was on had no greater chance of causing birth defects than pregnant women who don’t take anything.

I hope Fia and Emmett don’t struggle from depression or addiction. If they do though, I have the resources and information to get them proper help. I also believe that raising a child in a loving, stable, and nurturing environment counts for something. In my early formative years, my home was all that. It wasn’t until I was a teenager that things got a little ugly. Even so, I still turned out fine (I think). I contribute to society (I think). In fact, I have often said I’m grateful for the hardships I experienced. It made me the person I am today.

I have no doubt my kids will make this world a better place. They already have.  Whether they end up suffering from a “bad gene” is beside the point.

Here’s who I don’t think should procreate: Abusive, neglectful people. I believe they will become abusive, neglectful parents. I’ll add lazy and inept to the list. And those who have more kids than they can afford who keep procreating because they’re probably too lazy or inept to use birth control. But a smart, witty, compassionate person who happens to suffer from mental illness, like Sarah Silverman? I bet she’d make a great mom and raise interesting, well-adjusted kids. There are plenty of reasons to not have biological children. And plenty of good, noble reasons to adopt. Or to just stay childless. But don’t make it because of a mental gene. There are far better excuses one could come up with.

 

Photo of Human Body via Shutterstock

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Introducing My New Blog Title: Fearless Feisty Mama

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

Our New Blog Picture

We have a new name! No, not of Emmett or Fia, but of my blog. While we loved Of Fi I Sing, Emmett was excluded. Plus, with two kids I am entering a new phase of my life. As my blog has evolved, we realized my outlook is more than just focusing (and obsessing) on Fia. Motherhood is so all-encompassing and takes on almost all aspects of my life. We wanted the title to reflect that more. Plus, I didn’t want my boy to need (more) major therapy later on for feeling left out.

So after some massive brainstorming sessions in which I thought my computer Thesaurus was going to fire me, we came up with this new one. Introducing:

Fearless Feisty Mama: Candid and Comical Confessions of a Slightly Obsessive Mom

I’m really excited about it. I think it conveys more of my tone and style. We decided on “Fearless” because I’m not afraid to share my story. Whether it be the death of my drug- addicted mom, my decision to stay on antidepressants when pregnant, or my ugly vag issue, I tend to speak my mind and give an open and honest opinion.

We came up with “Feisty,” not only because I love alliteration, but in many ways it is my attitude towards parenting issues. From my annoyance at my babysitters for constantly losing sh-t, to the people who pay their nannies six-figures (ridiculous!), to my adamant stance on sleep training (do it!).

With my new name, we have a new look! My friend Jilly Wendell is an amazing photographer. She was kind enough to come over to our chaos and take a zillion pictures, hoping to get one without Emmett barfing, Fia screaming and me grimacing through a forced smile–though that is probably more realistic of our current state.

I’ll post some of the others this Friday.

Also, you may notice some of the older posts have images missing. And there are a few technical difficulties we are sorting out in changing my blog title. So bear with us and keep coming back. You guys help feed my creative soul.

 

Blog photo courtesy of Jilly Wendell Photography

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Lexapro and Breastfeeding

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

I wrote at length about my decision to stay on my antidepressants while pregnant. It was the right one for me, and so far, knock on wood, Emmett is nothing but alert, healthy and happy.

I did end up going off the Wellbutrin at around 7 months. It was sort of by accident, because I ran out of pills and hadn’t ordered any more. There were no side effects to the instant withdrawal and I felt fine without it. I did stay on the 10 mg of Lexapro until 3 weeks before my C-Section.

At that time, I decided to taper. The reproductive psychiatrist I had met with told me that there was a 10-30% chance of having a baby who is slightly fussy (or fussier) post birth if you keep on the meds. Still, she encouraged me to stay on them, because the fussy-factor dissipates within a few days. However, I tapered with Fia and I wanted to do the same this time around. I can live with .01% risk of staying on an antidepressant while pregnant. But 10-30% felt high to me, even though it’s a short-lived problem.

My taper wasn’t fun. I felt that dizzy/spaced out feeling pretty constantly. But I went with it because when you’re that pregnant, you feel exhausted anyway.

Emmett was born on January 25, 2012 and he has, knock on a forest, been an incredibly easy baby thus far. However, about a week after he was born, my hormones were raging, my nerves were getting frayed and my husband was pushing me to go back on the Lexapro before things went south.

I consulted a lactation consultant who informed me that Lexapro is now an L2 drug. Here is the website that explains the categories and gives a list of drugs. An L2 is a drug which, has been “studied in a limited number of breastfeeding women without an increase in adverse effects to the infant. And/or the evidence of a demonstrated risk which is likely to follow use of this medication in a breastfeeding woman is remote.”

L1 is the safest, L5 is the most risky.

I was so relieved to hear that Lexapro had been studied, that the first thing I did when I got home was take a 5 mg dose. I’ve been on that for about 2 months, and just last week went up to 10 mg. I was feeling a lot of anxiety and intensity about things. I was hoping 5 mg would be enough, but it wasn’t. I have noticed an immediate difference in my state of mind.

Wellbutrin is still an L3, which means it’s moderately safe, but no controlled studies have been done. I may go back on a small dosage of that as time goes on. We’ll see. I have some semi-obsessive issues I’m trying to deal with that seem to be getting worse. Like my obsession with cleaning. I feel like it is getting a bit out of control–which is ironic because I think “control” is what it’s all about. I will blog about that soon, as I have some ideas on how I may try and tackle this.

Anyway, I just wanted to update all of you who were interested and/or in similar situations as I was with the whole antidepressant arena. Thanks for listening.

 

Picture of breastfeeding via Shutterstock

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Facebook Chat: Join Me!

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

In two weeks from today I will go under the knife to have a baby pulled out of me. That is, unless he comes early.

In light of this, American Baby has asked me to do a live facebook chat with their readers. It will be tomorrow, (as in Thursday) from 1:30-2:30 Eastern Time. The flood gates are open for any of you to ask questions. Whether you want to know more about my choice to stay on Antidepressants While Pregnant, or the challenges of moving to Los Angeles mid-pregnancy, to my choice to hire a nanny full time (after baby comes), to my stance on homebirth, sleep training or why I want a C-section, ask away. We can even talk about my transexual cat, Wayne Sanchez (also known as the million dollar cat (read: expensive))–found by the polluted Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn.

Wayne Sanchez--All Man, Even Sans Boy Parts

I can give you my advice, insights and opinions…and you can give me yours! (and insults if you choose. I’ll have my armor).

Here is the link to the page.   http://www.facebook.com/#!/americanbabymag.

Chat with you tomorrow!

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