Beliefnet
After my first child was born, I was completely overwhelmed by my new responsibilities as a mom. That quickly gave way to what would become postpartum depression.

Fortunately, I had the loving support of my husband, and my mother came to stay with us while we adjusted to our new circumstances. Even though I kept reassuring myself that I "had it good," I could not shake the feeling of being under a black cloud. I was certain that if someone found out how I felt, they would come and take away my beautiful baby boy.

I confessed to my mom how I was feeling, and she did her best to brighten the atmosphere in our home. However, it was to no avail--before long, I didn't even want to get out of bed.

Finally, one night when I was at my very worst, I called the hospital where I'd given birth and talked to a nurse who was the first to suggest I might be suffering from "baby blues" or postpartum depression. She pleaded with me to call my OB/GYN first thing in the morning, which I did.

Because I had a history of panic disorder, my OB/GYN suggested I call the psychiatrist who had treated me previously for anxiety. Right away, the psychiatrist phoned my pharmacy with a prescription for an anti-depressant and made an appointment for me to see him in the next couple of days. Even though I still felt like I was on a sinking ship, it seemed as if the Coast Guard was on its way and I'd be out of rough waters soon.

That afternoon, I napped in my room with my son asleep in the crib at the foot of my bed. After about an hour, something woke me up. I opened my eyes and thought for a moment that I was still half-asleep--because hovering near me was a soft light that seemed to be reaching forth to embrace me. It startled me so much that I lay very still and became aware of a peaceful feeling. Looking toward the crib, I noticed about four to six of the soft lights hovering over it and appearing to lift the crib a few inches above the floor.

I felt an overwhelming sense of peace and a feeling that things were indeed going to take a turn for the better.

In this state, I fell asleep, and when I woke, I remembered what had happened. Had it been a dream? I really don't think so. Now, if this were a movie, I would have been feeling light and airy without even a hint of the depressed feeling I’d had before. However, I still felt gloomy, but at the same time a bit more hopeful.

In the following weeks, after I went on the medication and saw my therapist, the clouds did indeed part. I became much more able to take care of the beautiful baby boy with whom I'd fallen head over heels in love. And, thinking more about the "soft lights," I began to believe that what I had witnessed were angels.

It came to me that the light next to me had been my maternal grandmother, and the lights around my baby were the women in my life who had passed but sent their collective energies to comfort and protect my baby so that I could heal emotionally.

Months later the first person I revealed this to was my mom. Her reaction was not one of doubt, as I suspected it might be. Instead she said, "I'm so sorry! I didn't realize things had gotten so bad for you."

Until now, I have only told a select few about my experience. But I’m grateful for the opportunity to relate the story on Beliefnet because it gives me the chance to tell people that, yes, we are surrounded by love—even when we don't realize it.

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