Somewhere along my journey, I picked up a personality trait where I must do something if someone tells me I cannot do it. In particular, if someone tells me that I do not have the ability or it is best for me to not pursue a certain goal, then I am gone with my hair on fire after that goal or proving my ability. However, when it came to parenting, I heeded the warnings concerning my psychiatric diagnosis very seriously.
When one lives with a psychiatric diagnosis like schizoaffective disorder, there are many aspects to consider when contemplating parenthood. One, of course, is your own stability to provide for this entire other person the safety, care, and guidance they have a right to receive. The other concern lies in the treatments that keep you stable. While medications saved my life, they also take a toll and come complete with other issues to consider.
Add into this my own not-so-stable childhood and for once in life, I was cautious and heeding someone’s guidance
Then came the summer of 2012 and at the age of 35 I had an epiphany. I glanced at my husband and realized that he had been through the ups and downs of my illness for the past seventeen years at that point. He had truly seen it all… fugue states, me disappearing across state lines, a divorce, electro-convulsive therapy, too many to count medications, twelve hospitalizations, a suicide attempt…
In addition, I wanted to have a child with him and I was the most stable I had ever been. If he could weather the storm for nearly twenty years at that point and I finally wanted to have a child, why was I not doing this?
Oh, ya, society. Society…
Well, I mentally told society to bite me and got pregnant two weeks later.
Now, I have a fifteen month old son. He is quite the amazing little man. Is this mommahood @ diagnosis code 295.7 difficult? Yes. Yes, it is. Is it worth it? Never any doubts. Not once.