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Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Postpartum Psychosis - POST Life

POST LIFE Movie


A tormented mother has a difficult time coping with life after the tragic death of her 3 month old daughter.


This is a movie about life after Postpartum Psychosis. Something I write fairly regularly about. Nikki Love has started a GoFundMe campaign to help raise awareness about Postpartum Psychosis. Let's help her reach that goal, so we can help all mothers. All Moms Matter. 

A WORD FROM THE PRODUCER:

So we have officially launched our campaign to raise funds and raise awareness. It's been a looong journey for me...


Setbacks, Convictions & Courage

11/24/2015 Update


I can't even begin to tell you the emotional roller coaster ride over the past few days. But I will try. This is going to be a long post, but I have to share this story about setbacks, conviction and courage. You'll be blessed by the end, I promise! :-) ....











Here's a link to the Go Fund Me site as well to support this very important project.




Every Dollar Counts - Let's Make this Happen!
We are ALL WARRIOR MOMS!



Director / Producer: Salli Richardson - Whitfield

Writer / Producer: Nikki Love

Executive Producer: Nina Yang Bongiovi

Executive Producers: Blessed Ent., Jerwana Hill, Calvin Roberts

Consulting Producers: Jane Honikman, George Parnham

Cinematographer: Keith Smith

Original Score: Kevin Flournoy

Editor: JJ Geiger

VFX: Zafer Mustafa & Eddie Williams


~Be Loud, Be Purposeful, Be Strong, Be Courageous, Be Creative, Be Something~






Sunday, November 22, 2015

Suicidal Ideation

Suicide Ideation


natachia barlow ramsey, postpartum psychosis, suicide, maternal mental health, post life, depression

Suicidal thoughts they come and they go. They are rapid, they are slow.
Up and down, the feelings float by. Creating hunger, telling lies.
I try to climb, I try to be free. I feel the weight, it's crushing me.
Creating the hollows beneath my eyes. I feel my hopes begin to die.
Inside my brain I try to reason, I try to say, you can do this another day.
Darkness gathers along my mind. It's creeping in, it's not so kind.
Everything is bitter now. Sleep I must, sleep somehow.
I will myself to not wake up. The ache inside is just too much.
Death will be a sure release. All the pain, would just cease. 
Every teardrop would just dry. No more weight, no more cries.
At last I'll breathe my very last breath. It whispers to me, it's for the best.
Tonight may be the night I see, all those who've left long before me.
I tell myself it's the only way. I cannot live another day.
Once it's done, I just go numb. It's over even before it begun.
Nights are long, the days are short. Suicide; the last resort.



And Sometimes You Just Have to Keep Breathing-






Natachia Barlow Ramsey; Postpartum Psychosis Survivor and Loser

~Be Loud, Be Purposeful, Be Strong, Be Courageous, Be Creative, Be Something~






Saturday, November 14, 2015

Staying Grounded in Grief (And Creating a Shitstorm)

My Heart is Aching


As I read through an article about countertransference and they're taking about a therapy session in which the mom is grieving for her newborn son that was stillborn; I have such an intense ache inside my own heart, it feels like someone is actually squeezing it tightly.


I am paying attention as I read the article. I have not gotten all the way through the story yet. It's an article written by Karen Kleinman in Psychology Today. I had been trying to find some articles on anyone who had studied mothers who had lost children in the throes of Postpartum

Psychosis and what the grieving process is like for them. I've have been unsuccessful so far. So, in my own attempt to explain what this hell is
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like for those women, I will walk you through my experience reading this article:

It's titled "Countertransference: When is yours, mine?" and it is about a couple named Monica and Bobby who lost a little boy nine months gestation. He was two weeks post term when delivered and pretty much uneventful. 
My own son, Hunter was also born close to two weeks post term. This pregnancy for me was physically difficult. Nothing serious, just a lot of ongoing physical issues. 

The mother in the therapy session has asked to share a photo of her son with Karen. I am only a few paragraphs in and I have already gotten a stomach ache and my feet have started doing a toe crunch. I start touching my thigh lightly, tapping

As they are sharing the photo my eyes are filling with tears and I don't want to cry and I remind myself it's okay. I remind myself I am the only one here. My legs tighten and I cross my feet, I am biting my top lip. I take a minute for myself. Deep breaths. 

I go back to read a bit more. 

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I got through to where Karen starts discussing Freud and how she starting comparing their stories. I realized I am clenching my jaw and I am rubbing one of my wrists. As I type this I cannot rub my wrist. I am still
clenching my jaw but have moved to positioning my feet in the prone position not moving. 
After typing those two statements I stopped doing both of those things, at least momentarily.

I took a three week break from writing that. That's how difficult it can be.
postpartum psychosis, natachia barlow, natachia barlow ramsey, maternal mental health, suicide, death, postpartum depression, friendship
As I found the article again, I started immediately rubbing my left thumb and ring finger together. I haven't quite found my place yet, I am about to do just that.
Before I hit the tab I am tapping my fingers together on my left hand.

I'm not quite to the place, but my eyes skim over the part where Monica has asked to show Karen a photo of her son. It brings me back to the time I was still at AMHI in a women's forensic group (there were four of us) and I had brought one of the only photos I had of my son to share. It took me most of the group to finally say I wanted to show them my photo. The group was run by two female psychologists and one of them, just before I was about to hand my photo over to one of the other females, stopped me to ask "what I was hoping to get from sharing?". I immediately took my photo back and felt as though I had been kicked square in the guts. (I am constantly rubbing my fingers togethers and crunching my toes around the rung of the stool I am sitting on)
The safe moment that had been created during the group in which I felt as though I could share, was shattered when she stopped my hand from passing along the photo. It did and still does feel like a priceless token of time that I have captured. So small and yet worth so much. It's all I have.

I am going to go back to the article, but typing that small piece has sent me to tears that I am trying not to let get out of control.

I have gotten to the part where Karen says "The death of a child must be the most difficult to mourn." I thought when my mother died it was terrible. Missing a child and mixing it with the knowing guilt of your own hand creates something I wouldn't wish upon anyone.

Every day I think about dying. When I hear the name 'Hunter' I turn my head. When I see a reference to Robin Williams (my son was named after Robin Williams character in the movie Patch Adams) I think of him.

I feel as though most of you don't deserve to talk about Postpartum Psychosis and the 5% possibilities unless you are willing to stand in front of me. You are not allowed to say how sorry you are for the mother who just tried to drive into an ocean, or who got shot in front of the White House. You are not allowed to share their stories until you face me. You are not allowed to speak to the grieving families and the widows, the orphaned children or the lost souls until you are willing to stand in front of me.

You don't have that right. Your rights are revoked. Until you backup your words with actions. Because I am a Postpartum Psychosis Survivor and Loser.
I make myself do things I don't want to do all the time. I face my fears. I am afraid. I am alone. I make choices that I hope will make things not just better for the here and now, but better for the future. (I still make mistakes, that goes without saying)
But, this is not an easy life, my mind carries the burden and my heart carries grief.

I finished this tonight November 14th, 2015. I started this almost a month ago. I couldn't do it at the time. It felt crushing when I tried.

But it needs to be said. Just getting through that article took a month and I finished it tonight because of a tweet that ticked me off. Unintended, but yet isn't that how all shitstorms start?

I do wonder at times if I wasn't here to say "Whoa, now!" "Hey" and start jumping up and down and waving my arms around like a mad woman, how many things would just get swept away unnoticed. I mean, I guess who else will do it right?





~Be Loud, Be Purposeful, Be Strong, Be Courageous, Be Creative, Be Something~





Monday, November 9, 2015

Am I Worthy?

"Am I Worthy"

 Originally written while I was remanded - Nov 25, 2001 (I had just spent my first Thanksgiving alone)

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Life continues elsewhere, but behind these huge stone walls, time seems to stop and sometimes you forget who you really are. 
You've looked for the light at the end of the tunnel, but hopes and dreams seem to get further and further away until you believe you can't see them anymore. 
You want that with every mistake you make it will be your last, and at last you will learn from your mistakes. 
Do you think I'm worthy?  Do I think I'm worthy? 
There have been many times I have forgotten God and all he has given me. For I am too busy enjoying myself. 
I often feel unworthy and believe he will not want my broken body and soul, for I did not turn to him when I was standing tall. 
I wonder of my uncertainty of God.  Is there truth behind my prayers? 
I can say out loud to anyone who would listen; yes, of course God loves me. 
Whenever I stumble, he waits for me to ask for his help again.  For like all parents, they love their children always, and I am one of his children. 
But in my heart, while I lie in bed at night, my fear is that I am undeserving of God’s love and forgiveness. 
I waiver in my faith, and wonder if God is really there. 
I try to recall in my desperate moments, the times I have been filled by his presence and overwhelming feelings of love.  
And I have, for it is not God who forgets me and gets too busy to say hello.  It is I who forgets to give thanks to him. 
Yet he always helps me back to my feet when I fall, caresses my tears and fills me with hope I so desperately need. 
So I pray again the same unforgotten words that I try to believe will be heard. 
"Please forgive me, I am sorry and I want to do right by you.  Help me God, for you are my strength when I have none." 
So in my weakest moments, when I feel like I have been dropped from a tall building like a rock to the ground, he will wrap his celestial arms around me and embrace my fall, for he knows I will turn to him.


For he is my strength when I have none.  And we are all worthy.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I had written this when I was spending my first Thanksgiving in AMHI. I remember I had never been away from family during the Holidays before. When I got up Thanksgiving morning, I cried into my cornflakes. I would no longer be preparing a Turkey.

I've been struggling a lot. Away from everyone down here in Myrtle Beach. Thanksgiving is fast approaching and my experience is telling anyone up close and personal about my past is not only not fun, it sends people running. 

People always, always think they want to know. They just cannot comprehend. So, you go through the painful, twisting of your soul to tell them and they run away. Because they cannot fathom when you try to explain to them beforehand when you say it's too difficult to talk about or understand. 
So you die just a little bit more inside each time you believe one more person who tells you to trust them. That they will be the one to understand. 

I stepped out of dating for years now. My last serious relationship ended in 2011. I wanted to focus on my daughter and all that was happening. 
I had only begun dating again since being down in Myrtle Beach. No one knows me here. But, no connections. Nothing worth mentioning until very recently I met someone, I had that feeling you can't quite put words to. It's that feeling you wait for. I mean it only took four years right? 
But, you know how this ends:
I go ahead and start mentally preparing myself for the big reveal. I had to buy some alcohol (and any of you that know me, know I don't drink) to start talking. I'm having an anxiety attack the entire time and trying to give this abbreviated version by only saying I was responsible for another life at this point. My guts feel like they're being ripped out of me. 
He's being very kind. As we are talking, I tell him I could hug him and never let go, and he gives me a warning about not doing that. I am crushed. 
We end up on my balcony and he ends up going in first and I stay outside trying to figure out what to do. I then hear his truck start up. I go back inside and he is gone, along with his things. I proceed to send him a series of irrational texts (at this point I am fairly intoxicated) and I got Lasagna in my bed too (I have no idea about that either, found it there this morning. Like I said, I never drink and I drank an entire bottle of wine myself)

This is the most difficult conversation in my world to have with someone. People do not understand what they are asking. This is why I gave up dating. I feel like a fool for believing. I really thought for a moment I had paid penance for everything. I thought someone good, kind and genuine was being sent into my life. Someone who seemed to value the same things I did and was loyal to a fault. 
I'm tired. I want to keep believing, I do. It's just hard. 



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~Be Loud, Be Purposeful, Be Strong, Be Courageous, Be Creative, Be Something~