Overcoming Postpartum Depression—On Horseback in Kazakhstan
A terrifying experience with my sick newborn sent me into a downward spiral of nightmares, depression and self-harm. It took a 24-day trip through a remote region of Central Asia to find myself again.
Illustrations by Marianna Madriz
Deliberately, with resolve, I placed a hammer on the kitchen counter. I was no longer crying, at least not right then. Finally, I had a plan, and I felt better for it. I’d begin by smashing my hand. The pain, I hoped, would distract me from the thoughts I was having of hurting my newborn boy.
I sat down on the kitchen floor and leaned against the cabinets. I was so tired. It was January, and hot. The days were long and the nights short. Seasons are upside down in New Zealand, where my husband and daughter and I had moved earlier in the year from New York. We’d come here to follow my husband’s dream of returning home. I hadn’t given much thought to how I’d feel moving to a new country with a young baby, how it would be different from when I’d moved overseas as a single, working woman. I suppose I’d just shrugged my shoulders and assumed I’d regard it as another adventure.