By: Meghan Barrett
You just gave birth to a beautiful baby. The long awaited anticipation has finally arrived. You get to hold your baby in your arms. You can smell that sweet newborn smell, snuggle and feel the love radiating off this tiny human. This is the most beautiful time in your life.
But what if it isn’t? What happens when your transformation into motherhood isn’t the fairytale you thought it would be? You try your hardest, you love your baby, you are appreciative for what you have; but you simply can’t enjoy it. Something is missing. You feel like something might be inherently wrong with you. You feel stuck, all alone, in a dark hole.
This is what happens to about 1/5 moms after giving birth. They suffer from a perinatal mood disorder – anxiety, depression, OCD, PTSD and others. Mood disorders are the most common childbearing complication.
“Climb Out of the Darkness” is a community walk that aims to end the stigma and shame surrounding perinatal mood disorders. The message is: “you are not alone, you are not to blame and with help you will be well.”
Postpartum Support International has been sponsoring The Climb Out of the Darkness walks around the world for 10 years. There have been over 130 climb communities and over 12,000 participants throughout the years.
This year Raleigh is putting on the first Climb since 2019 thanks to a partnership with Her Health Collective and Moms Supporting Moms. Part of the funds raised will stay right here in the Raleigh community to help Moms Supporting Moms provide support and mentoring for moms who are pregnant, postpartum and their families.
“The climb signifies being down in the depths of a dark hole and the mountain moms are faced with scaling to get out,” Crissy Fishbane describes her experience with Postpartum Anxiety and how it feels in order to climb your way out.
After giving birth to her daughter in 2017 Crissy found herself with extreme anxiety and suffering from panic attacks. She, like many, had never heard of Postpartum Anxiety before. Through her experience she felt the pull to help other moms navigate the tough terrain of motherhood and created Her Health Collective, a supportive community and hub for moms in the Triangle.
The goal for this year is to raise $3,500 for Postpartum Support International and Moms Supporting Moms. But more than that, Crissy says she simply wants to see people “show up.” This event is the world’s largest for raising funds and awareness for the mental health of new families. While raising money is great, and certainly needed, the aim of this walk is to bring awareness to Perinatal Mood Disorders, share stories and bring the community together so moms, parents and families don’t feel alone.
The main outcome that Crissy wants to see: “I want to see connection happening. See people connect with one another and know they are not alone on this journey.”
You can join in on the Climb:
Saturday, June 25 at 9:30am at John Chavis Park.
This is a family friendly event so bring the kids along too for games, bubbles, hula hoops and more.
You can join the Climb team for free and/or donate with the link below:
Meghan Barrett is a Mom Success Coach & Podcaster. She helps moms create a life they love as “mom” AND an individual without the mom guilt. Mama’s Daily Dose is the short, actionable podcast for mamas who want more.