• http://.goodbooksnw.com Anonymous

    Bravo, Heather, Bravo!
    Thanks for letting us in on this. Lots of love to your whole family.

  • http://www.celebrity-babies.com Danielle

    You go, natural birthin’, breastfeedin’, medicated mama! She’s beeeeeautiful Heather. Keep the milk-drunk photos coming. They’re the best! I’m going to need to call you about the natural birth route because that’s what I want to do for our little baby boy/girl/finding-out-on-Monday!

  • Rhonda

    WONDERFUL update. You probably have no idea how many women you have helped with this. So glad you were able to recognize what was happening soon…and how cool was that that he saw you, even if by accident! I know plenty of women who have taken PPD meds and breastfed without any issue. Congratulations to your beautiful family!

  • Krista

    God am I happy for you and SO PROUD to hear you talk about PPD. It’s awful. It’s crippling. It’s dark and painful and anyone who HAS NOT gone thru it has no right to comment. And NO ONE has any right to judge you. You are doing wonderfully and if ur family is happy and healthy, that’s ALL that matters. Marlo is gorgeous btw. :D

  • Lisa

    I was just thinking this morning of you and wondering what your mental state has been like over the past 2 weeks. I am thrilled you saw THE DOCTOR and you are able to enjoy your time with Marlo and all she adds to the mix. I am insanely jealous of the post you wrote about your new, and surprisingly deeper, emotions involving Leta. I desperately want a second child, but my body won’t let me do it anymore. Your book was wonderful and made me cry outloud in some parts with that, “Yes, yes, me too!” yell.

    I thought panic attacks were normal when you have a newborn, and you are telling us, that no, they really are not. Thank you for that.

  • Anonymous

    Good for you. xoxo

  • Claire

    I wish I could have your doctor. It was that panic attack feeling that tormented me for the first 5 months of my little ones life. It took me about 9 months to feel right again. We are contemplating a second, and I am so scared. However, reading this gives me a bit more courage.

    PS Marlo is so beautiful. Would love to see a pic of her with big sis.

  • Laura

    But don’t you know? Tom Cruise says there’s no such thing as post-partum depression. That’s it’s a myth and you shouldn’t take ANYTHING for it, just speak to Xanu or whatever the heck his “religion” talks about and it will all be OK. What an ass he is!

  • Richelle

    Heather, you are amazing! Thank you for talking about your experiences. It makes it so much easier to deal with what I’m going through now. I’m 19 weeks pregnant, and last week was diagnosed with Gestational Depression. My family doctor didn’t want to prescribe anything because he is not familiar with what could harm the baby. I was able to get an appointment with the physiatrist that treated me for post partum after I had my daughter and we will discuss what medication I can take that will not harm my child. He specializes in PPD and will know exactly how to help me.

  • TinaNicole


    You are a very inspiring woman! I am so glad to hear that everything is going well (even if you did have a bit of a setback for a couple of days). That doctor sounds awesome.. The world needs more doctors like that.

    I know you probably don’t have time to read all of these comments, much less respond to any of them… But I’m going to ask on the off chance that you might actualy have time to reply: Do you attribute your instant bond and connection with Marlo to a natural child birth? The reason why I ask is because I had an epidural with my daughter (now 9 months old) and it took me quite some time to feel really connected and in love with her… And I’ve had a lot of guilt about that. I am completely 100% in love with her now, but for the first 6 weeks or so it was very difficult. I’m not really sure if I can blame that on an epidural.. I’m pretty sure I can’t… But maybe women were made to have natural births for a reason. Honestly that scares the crap out of me though!

    Anyway, congrats on your beautiful family and being an advocate for yourself and many others with PPD.

  • http://www.ekwphotography.com Elizabeth

    Congratulations! I’m so happy for your family. And congrats on taking your own health into consideration. Taking care of yourself is going to make you’re childrens lives happier and healthier too.

  • http://lifeloveandlevi.blogspot.com/ KJ

    You lost me when you said that you PUSHED A BABY OUT OF YOUR VAGINA WITHOUT ANY DRUGS! WOW!

    Congratulations, Armstrongs!

  • Ann

    Beautiful post. Thank you for sharing.

  • SBS

    I’m so proud (do I have a right to be proud? No, but still) of you for writing this. And for taking care of yourself and your girls. Coco included.

  • http://www.paramomal.com Jennifer

    That is wonderful! Glad you are doing well. :)

  • NoL

    How wonderful!!!!!!! Enjoy the Joy!!!

  • Dawn

    GOOD FOR YOU!!! You go, girl!!!!!!!

  • Sheri Bheri

    Oh! I’m so very happy for you! And I’m so glad you wrote this post, I was worried about you.

  • Amelia

    We are all just trying to do the best by our babies one day at a time. Don’t ever feel bad about that, and I’ll try not to.

  • Michelle

    Thank you for your candor; as someone who also needs the meds, I appreciate you sharing your story with us. I’m glad you are seeing such immediate and lasting results. Congrats on the baby!

  • http://www.nancykingsearch.com Nelking

    Isn’t cool when you know what’s wrong and you can deal with it?

    Yes, you must record the yelling…

  • http://orangetangerine.blogspot.com Orange

    I read your book this spring and was really hoping the PPD was a one-time thing. My god, this post made my throat tighten up.

    So glad you finagled your way to Dr. Compassionate Genius and that he didn’t shoo you away with a referral elsewhere. (He probably didn’t want to end up the villain in your next book.) And now that you know he’s got a third-trimester medication plan to ward off PPD recurrence, why, you and Jon could totally go Duggar.

  • http://thelittlefischinitaly.blogspot.com/2009/06/or-maybe-it-is.html K

    Happy, well mother = happy, well baby. Whatever makes that happen is good. Take care and keep enjoying your beautiful baby girl!
    All the best, K

  • Sandy

    Congratulations……Marlo is so beautiful. So glad to hear your doing good. I think you are an Amazing woman =)…*HUGS*

  • Anonymous

    Just want to chime in with my own Thank You for writing so honestly and publicly about post partum anxiety (which is connected to but not the exact same thing as ppdepression). I had terrible anxiety after I gave birth to my twins, and it took several doctors over a year to find the right medication to get things under control. I am still angry that it took so long to feel better — really, that first year was just miserable and I did not enjoy much of it at all. But I feel great now (my twins are 2 1/2) and I am very open with friends, etc. about my experience because it shouldn’t be a taboo. I wish you the very best with your new family.

  • Dayna

    I am so proud of you, Heather. You are a rock star. Your babies are beautiful. And, I want your husband. He is handsome, yes. But what is most sexy, is his support of you. So hard is the healing without such. I wish you fluffy bliss.

  • http://sensetodollars.blogsppot.com Sense

    I’m so, so happy that you are ok. And that you sought help immediately when you needed it. I know that I don’t even know you, but I’m really proud of you for that and for sharing this. I think that you are brave and strong, and from the looks of it, a really great mother.

  • Anonymous

    You go girl. Rock on.

  • http://silgeland.blogspot.com/ Julia

    I do not think you are poisoning your baby. In fact, I think you are doing the absolute best thing for your baby and yourself. Hang in there!

  • http://twitter.com/marbear Marian

    Glad you recognized the signs, headed it off at the pass, and are feeling better! Nobody deserves the shitty hell-hole that is anxiety/panic attacks.

  • Michelle who btdt

    As someone who has breastfed while on meds 2x, and had one unmedicated pregnancy and one medicated one, GOOD FOR YOU!!!! (Not that you need my support, but there it is!)

    Enjoy your girls!

  • Ivy

    Reading your post gives me a lot of hope. I suffer from this and it’s not been easy to find doctors in my area specializing in postpartum depression and anxiety. I just wish it was EASY for women to find good physicians that specialize in this condition, because once it hits you it is difficult to think straight.

  • http://www.weheartbaby.com/ Shaunna

    YAY! You so deserve to feel this way. Congrats and don’t let the haters convince you that you’re doing anything wrong. You’re taking care of your family, and most importantly, YOURSELF!

  • http://www.howmylife.blogspot.com Kendra

    I haven’t read all the other comments, so this is probably repeating sentiments already expressed, but…

    I have been treated for depression for several years. I have three kids. During each pregnancy and each breastfeeding experience, I faced the decision of whether or not to continue with my medication. Each time, I discussed it with my doctors (OB, psychiatrist, and pediatrician), and each time, I decided to continue with the medication. And there is no doubt in my mind that it was the right decision for me and my family. My kids are much better off with a mom whose mental health is under control, and I am confident that my medication did not adversely affect them.

    It can be very hard to confront the possibility that you need help, and it’s even worse when people suggest that you are weak or unworthy because you need help, or if they suggest that the options you’ve chosen are going to hurt your children. I’m glad that you were able to admit when you needed help and that you were able to get it so quickly. Your whole family is better for it!

  • http://a-brilliant-life.blogspot.com/ Anonymous

    I am very very happy for you and I totally salute your strength, honesty and commitment to taking care of yourself.

  • http://zoerights.blogspot.com/ Zoeright

    This crap is chemical-and sometimes needs a chemical solution and anybody who doesn’t understand that should shove their opinions where the sun does not shine.

    I am so glad you found someone to help you fix it so that you can enjoy your new baby.

  • http://zsinparis.blogspot.com Moya

    Heather, if you are feeling like a “regular person who has an infant and can handle it” then you are doing better than most of the “regular” persons out there. Infants are hard to deal with!
    I had my second baby last spring, in a foreign country, with no family around, and because of what I read on your blog I found myself in my Obgyn’s office the first week I was back in the US telling him that I loved the baby, but never wanted to leave my flat. Medication quickly followed, and continued thru the horrible winter. Thank you for showing me that there was a way out of the darkness…
    Wishing you & Jon all the happiness in the world, and I hope that Leta is enjoying Marlo as much as ours are enjoying eachother…

  • sarahm

    you are blessed. with the little one, and leta, and jon, and chuck, and….yes. ok. even coco. but mostly you are blessed because you know yourself, know what you need, and have learned it is not a weakness to advocate for yourself, for your family, and for women. you inspire me. keep on, heather. WE are blessed you share your story.

  • jenlovestokyo

    Hello, love your blog, read it regularly (not religiously, sorry), first comment. When you described studying and observing your baby with love for 2 days, it reminded me of this brilliant book called “talking of love” by Boris Cyrulnik. He basically explains how people can tap into what he calls resilience and get over traumas (he studied child soldiers, holocaust survivors but also “regular” depressed folk like me and perhaps yourself- making an assumption there, sorry!)
    Anyway, he talks about how motherhood affects women with a trauma and he said that the women who are likely to experience some difficulty are the ones who study their babies in awe after birth, in a quiet, almost exalted way, but who may not be quite as expressive as a balanced mother with no trauma. Might be reading too much into just a few words though, but his book really helped me.
    Voila! Thanks for reading if you did ;-)

  • http://tigweb.blogspot.com jana

    I had wonky thyroid issues when I was pregnant, and had to take a drug that was a little iffy about what might/might not pass to the baby. But the risks of leaving my hyperthyroidism untreated would have been worse, so I took the drug. As a result, I had to put up with lots of judgy people who thought I was a cracked out whore poisoning my unborn child. He was (and is) fine, of course. This is just to say, screw ‘em! Screw ‘em AND their unsolicited opinions!

    I also thought the transition from childless to parent was MUCH more difficult than the transition to mother-of-two. It almost seems…easy and FUN this time around!

  • http://sassypriscilla.typepad.com sassypriscilla

    Heather, I am happy you got help and that you are feeling better. I am happy that life is so good for you, too. When I saw the title of your post, I thought Oh dear! I knew exactly where it was leading.

    I suffer from anxiety brought on by my son’s health problems. He had 4 heart surgeries in almost 3 years, the first 3 in his first 6 months of life. He is 6 now and doing great but I haven’t recovered so I finally started seeing a therapist. One of the things she has taught me that I thought I would share with you when it comes to anxiety is to let it in. When you feel it coming, welcome it in. Say, “oh it is you again.” That way, you don’t suppress it and it doesn’t become a battle in your body to keep it down. It just arrives and fizzles. It has really helped me.

    I hope your medications continue to help you and look forward to reading more about your family.

  • http://serenitydays.blogspot.com/ AmberStar

    I’m so glad you found the doc you had seen before and got sorted out right away. Your joy and happiness comes bubbling through with this post.

    Take care and your new baby sounds like she is going to be a trip sort of like Leta, but different in so many ways. :)

  • http://neartheequatorandwhite.blogspot.com/ abigail

    so glad to hear that you are doing well and that your family is adjusting and that you got in a shower!!! all of my friends who have kids remember fondly the days that they could take a leisurely shower whenever they wanted. :-)

  • Odds stacked against me too

    You are amazing. I am planning on having another baby very soon and am PETRIFIED that I will feel the same postpartum effects of the first time. Oh those days of feeling so helpless and angry I wish to never experience again. BUT in this one blog entry of yours you have made me feel okay if it were to rear its ugly head again. Thank you. from the bottom of my heart. I am so thankful for your openness and honesty of such a private situation.

  • http://www.toomanymornings.com MikeWJ

    I did wake up in a bed of liquid chocolate next to a supermodel once, and it’s not everything it’s cracked up to be, trust me. But I’m very glad you’re feeling good about baby this go ’round. And thanks for being so open about the postpartum depression, too. It helps a lot of people, Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes notwithstanding.

  • Anonymous

    So happy you are healthy and you’re able to enjoy this fantastic new experience with your family!!!

    And please DO share a video of Marlo’s yelling with us. Brilliant baby.

  • Robyn

    Another keeper–what a lovely, funny, honest post. Many congratulations.

  • Anonymous

    I’m way past postpartum with the ‘baby’ of the family being 13, but I’m also dealing with god-awful depression and anxiety. That combination that swirls itself into one big paralzying mess. You’re inspiring me to just make the damn appointment, go see the doc and get back on meds. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

  • Stenar

    I’m glad you got into that doctor and are doing well now.

  • Courtney

    Way to go Heather! I am so glad to hear that things are going great. I read your book and am 2 months post-partum and have been thinking about you. Best wishes! :)