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How Do You Get Your Self Motivated During the Day to Do ANYTHING?

My problem is I am always tired and I have NO motivation, or gumption to do anything! All I want to do is sit, eat, and keep to myself. How do I pull myself out of this stage, or mood, or whatever it is that I am stuck in/under so I can do somthing without dragging through it?

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K.,

I have found that exercise helps me a lot. Also getting some contact with my peers helps my mood, and getting some alone time. But you might also be dealing with mild depression. You might want to see a doctor to see if you can get some help.

I feel like I had the same problem, when I had both my kids. I think you just need to find something to do that you would enjoy. With my first baby, I got a part-time job and with the second one I decided to start going to school online. Another thing I did to get going was I would get ready for the say like I had somewhere to go, take a shower, do my hair and make-up, it made me want to get out of the house. (I have a 4 and a 2 year old and I had the first at 19)

I would commit at least to doing one walk a day - just to get going....and if you are wanting to eat, eat healthy raw foods - nuts, seeds, fruits, veggies. If you are sitting, read an inspirational book. You may want to take flower remedies - look into Bach Flower Remedies which may help clear this mood you are in. Good luck!

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Well, first of all, good for you for posting this, and realizing that something is wrong with the way that you are feeling, and putting your intentions out there to find a solution. Awareness is always the first step.
I was an 18 year old when I got preggo with my first, who is now nearly 11. I have a 20 month old from my second marriage, too. both times I have battled with what you are describing. I am a very different person now that I have actually grown up and gone back to school. I learned a lot in school about the human body, and nutrition and exercise. For most new moms this is a challenge. So much of your energy goes to your little one, esp. if you are not in a relationship with a partner who is sharing the care. It sounds like your parents are really helping right now, which is a blessing. I didn't live near my family when I was pregnant the first time, and it would have been easier if I had some doting grandparents around!
The first steps you need to take are honestly examining your diet. If you don't put good stuff into your body, you will not feel good or have energy. I get low blood sugar very easy, and that was always part of my problem. I bought a food combining chart at the co-op which really helps me get the most nutrition out of my diet- they still carry them. I also had to quit smoking pot, which was a BIG part of my problem (not that that is yours). I learned that skeletal muscle contractions are the ONLY way that the body has to push adequate nutrients around, including oxygen. That means exercise.
Secondly, every mom should be taking a good, organic, WHOLE FOOD supplement. Esp. if you are still nursing. The ones you get in grocery stores are typically synthetic, and don't do much.
Vitamin B, and D are very important here in the PNW.
It is also possible that you may have a thyroid imbalance, which can happen to women after pregnancy, esp. teen moms, since the hormones in your body are not yet completely mature. Ask your doctor if this might be possible.
It is VERY important, even if you are trying to lose weight, that you make sure you are getting a good solid protein and complex carb breakfast to start your day. Cold cereal, muffins,toaster waffles, none of these are enough. If you can get some fruit, some whole grains ( sprouted grain breads, english muffins, bagels, all avail. at the co-op or fred myers,and are easy and good and quick), some protein and some calcium, you will be off to a good start. You should NEVER wait more than 4 hours to eat something. Even if it is a snack, you need to keep up that blood sugar level.
Here is what I do when I am feeling sluggish, esp. in the winter;
I IMMEDIATELY (first chance possible) get in the shower to force myself awake without caffeine, which leads to adrenal burnout, and more tiredness later on. i wash with peppermint soap to make my skin tingle and aromatherapy myself into go-mode. While I am in the shower washing I inhale sharply through my nose only ( you get more oxygen this way), and focus on filling myself with air each time. I stretch and work out the morning stiffness in my neck and shoulders and low-back by doing side to side neck stretches, shoulder rolls, and bending to touch my toes, with a side twist here and there. I do this IN the shower with the water beating on the stiff places. I can do this even if my little one is in the shower with me, playing on the floor( i put a towel under her so she doesn't slip).
I eat a balanced meal and listen to fun music to dance to with the baby after. baby loves to be held and danced around, and watch you be crazy. DO NOT turn on your tv. Just don't. It is the killer of our energy, and our creativity as a mom. Your dear one is going to start being mobile if he isn't already, very soon, and you are going to have to chase him everywhere anyway, this is a good rhythm to get into with him, starting your day off dancing and being happy. I KNOW that sometimes these things are the last things you want to be doing. That is part of what growing up is about- sometimes you HAVE TO FORCE YOURSELF out of a rut, into a good habit. If you don't do it one day, don't beat yourself up. You are doing the best you can. Just get up the next day and try your best that day. It took me a long while to get into healthy rhythms. I used to check out videos at the library to exercise in front of the tv with. Babies generally think this is hilarious, but sometimes they make doing it impossible, so I wait until nap time, usually. Before nap time, getting exercise and fresh air is best. If you can make yourself get up and feel awake ( putting on makeup and doing hair helps me a lot, also tossing the sweats- if your clothes don't fit, do a value village shopping spree to make yourself feel better about your body, and don't worry, our bodies change with pregnany and birth, it probably won't ever feel like the same body you once had, that's okay, you are a mom now, and have a different, more mature body), then you can put the kid in the stroller or backpack, or baby wrap, and go for a walk. The baby will get tired in a good way from the fresh air, and you will be energized and benefit from the sunlight, that DOES come through the clouds, even if it is overcast. There is an important chemical called seratonin that gets suppressed from sitting inside not getting outdoor light or exercise. The lack of this makes you feel pretty depressed. And in the Pacific Northwest Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) runs rampant this time of year! I like to make library trips and check out parenting books and exercise videos/dvds, they make me feel empowered and give me lots of great ideas to try for myself, and for the baby. I was a pretty good young mommy just because of those books I read! Even though I am older now, and have experience being a mom, I still do this. It helps focus me on my priorities, so even when I am having a day where I am tired and unmotivated, and just can't do it, and it is crappy outside, instead of planting myself in front of the tv, I read while I can. Also- frustrating to try to get outside exercise at this time of year, SO I take the baby to the mall and walk back and forth. They love the car carts, and have a NICE mommy lounge. STill not outside, but still exercise! As the baby becomes even more of a toddler, this is a must for the PNW mom. There is only so much walking in the rain we can do!
Anyhow, the most important thing is to learn how to get what YOU NEED to be healthy and happy so you can be a good mom. It is never a bad thing to see a counselor. The only thing to watch out for is doctors who try to prescribe depression meds when you really just need to change diet and activity levels. IF you have done that and are still depressed, then it doesn't hurt to check these things out. But meds can have awful side effects like weight gain, nightmares, dry mouth, etc.. best to avoid, esp. since you are still so young. Your body is just figuring out how to be an adult, and you don't want to confuse it.Meds often replace natural bodily functions unecessarily, and get you on the wrong track.
Being more informed, and getting more information about being a young mom is the best thing you can do for yourself. It can give you the motivation on those days when you just can't peel yourself off the sofa. I also have joined a baby group with babies my daughter's age, which is SO MUCH FUN! It doesn't cost anything really, we all take turns bringing snacks, and we moms can talk and support eachother while the kids play. There are great message boards at the co-ops for these sorts of things, and also online. Connecting with other moms through myspace is great, and there are lots of other forums out there for moms looking to support eachother. If you don't have a computer, the library does! Being social with my other mom friends is what makes the difference for the quality in my life, and what helps me get off the couch. I did not have those kinds of resources when i was a first time mom, I lived in Michigan in the middle of nowhere, and did not know how to put myself out there to connect with other moms. Even if you aren't single, you need support as a mom. I love Olympia because there are so many young, forward thinking moms living here, in a ll different lifestyles, all ready to be community and support eachother. I am not always in the mood to be social, but they are always there, even when I just need to talk on the phone and vent or something. So I have rambled enough- I hope something I have said helps. Here is a phone number for a great music baby group I am in. I try to pay 5 dollars a week, or bring a snack, but it isn't a big deal if you don't have it. It is at my friend Lindsey's house on Wed. ____@____.com is on the Eastside of Oly, and right on the #21 bus route.
Fulfill Your Song Music and Voice Lessons
###-###-####

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Very briefly, K., you could be depressed. People can be quite severely depressed and somehow not realize it. Please google "symptoms of depression" to pull up many sites that will help you find out whether you should see a medical professional about this.

Here's a list to get you, or other readers who might also be candidates, to start evaluating your own situation. This is from the web page about teenagers at http://www.helpguide.org/mental/depression_teen.htm

Sadness or hopelessness - (is this you?)
Irritability, anger, or hostility
Tearfulness or frequent crying
Withdrawal from friends and family - (you mention this one)
Loss of interest in activities - (you mention this one)
Changes in eating and sleeping habits - (is this you?)
Restlessness and agitation
Feelings of worthlessness and guilt - (is this you?)
Lack of enthusiasm and motivation - (you mention this one)
Fatigue or lack of energy - (you mention this one)
Difficulty concentrating
Thoughts of death or suicide

As you see, depression can take many forms, which can disguise it in many people. Please take this seriously if you think there's any possiblility that this describes you, and get medical help and/or counseling. Your beautiful child needs you to be all you can be if he is to become all he can be.

Blessings to you.

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Depression--it's nothing to be embarrassed about or any of the stigma that may come with it. You have a right to be happy and for your own sake and you child's sake please talk to a doctor about it and try some medication. I had this problem and it is amazing the difference it has made. Also from personal experience I would start feeling better and thought I was fine and would go off my medication on my own without my doctor's knowledge or supervision and that is not good or safe. It can be hard to get the help when it is just hard to do anything, but please do before more of your life and your child's life passes without you "there". I am thinking of you and wish you all the best.

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It sounds to me like you are depressed, first of all you need to get back into school, have one of your parents watch your baby while your in school or work your school schuedule around whom ever can watch your baby. If you are still in high school try to do night school or get some counceling from the school counclers and find out if you can do your class work at home or go for your G.E.D. that is always the option, I know that your baby is very important to you but without a diploma or GED you will have a hard time getting into college or getting a job that pay's decent. you need to get up and keep busy, make phone calls to your school and see where to start, in the long run it will be better for you and your child.You should see a Dr about your depression, antidepressents really do help, good luck!
thanks
L.

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K.,

Firstly, let me compliment you for reaching out and asking others for help and advice. Being a mom at any age is hard, and being a teen makes it even harder. It sounds to me like you might be depressed. If you have health insurance, please make an appointment to see your doctor to talk about this. If you are in the Portland area, you can also go to the teen health clinics (you don't have to be enrolled in school to use them). There is one a ROoosevelt HS, one at Marshall, one at Grant. I would also contact the Teen Parenting program through the schools. They have counselors adn support and can hook you up with other teen moms for support. Feel free to email me off list if you need more info.

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K.:

A very good question and not an easy one. I am 25 and have a daughter who is almost 9 (so I had her about the same aget you had Jared). I too was living with my parents and my three younger sisters. My parents however, insisted that I have a job before my daughter was born, so I was going to school full-time and working 30 hours a week. The simple response is not the easiest thing to do and that is you simply have to force yourself to go get a job and get enrolled in school. By doing this, you are not only keeping busy and bringin in an income, but you are also socializing and setting an example. You need to set the example for your son and your brothers, showing them that while you may have obstacles to overcome, you can do it and you can make your life better simply because you want to. Use Jared as your motivation. In the mean time, I'll be praying for motivation for you. And know this: you can do it! It's possible and you're obvously a stong woman already: you have a child.

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K.,
Sounds like your not finding any self satisfaction in your life. Are you helping your parents while they help you. You need to get a job or start doing something that makes you feel good about yourself. Start by going for walks with your baby and feel good about it. Help your parents around the house and they might show some appreciation for your help, this will make you feel good. While you have the time you should think about what it is you want to do with your life and your babies future. You, yourself have to make these decisions. You made the decision to have a child, now make the decision to support the two of you at a career you like.

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I was a young mother as well and I know the challenges of trying to get motivated and stay motivated. I am now 40 years old with a 20 year old who has moved out and a 6 year old in kindergarten. I wish I would have had this support group when I was in younger. Life is going to be very challenging for you but it sounds like you have a great support system with your family. I look back and can not remember alot about raising my oldest son because I was so focused on just surviving and trying to make ends meet.

My advise for you is to multi leveled.

1.Cherish every moment with your son. Children grow up so fast and it is so important to be there in every way for your child. Who knows, before you know it you will be the one sharing a little advise to another young person who may be struggling as you are now.

2.Get on a really good multi vitamin with lots of Vitamin D & B. This will help you feel better within about a week. In the Northwest we do not get enough sunlight so Vitamin D supplements are very important.

3. Try to get out and walk for 30 minutes to 1 hour several times a week. This has helped me to destress and gain focus on what I want in life as well as generate energy and I believe this will help you as well.

4. Look at that beautiful little boy and decide that he is the most important person in your life. Bundle him up and make your walks have a purpose. Fresh air (even cold air) will give you energy. Taking even the shortest walk will help you and Jared feel refreshed and happier.

5. Try to eat clean foods by cutting out sugar, white bread, sweets and bad fats. I recently got a book called the Eat Clean diet and boy I tell you that I am sleeping better and feel so much better when I loosly follow the plan.

6. Love yourself and find some time to just do something good for yourself. A long bath, read a book, take a walk by yourself and just think and be present in your own space and mind and dream big girl because the world is your palyground.

I wish you all the luck in the world and I normally don't respond to messages like this but I felt compelled to respond and try to encourage you. You reaching out and asking for advice is a wonderful thing to see. It is a step in the right direction to get and stay motivated.

Best of Luck to you and Jared.

Billie Jo

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Hey K.,

I think you need to go in and get your thyroid checked. In the meantime, start supplementing with B12 or a B complex to help your energy. If you doc says your thyroid is ok, or even if it isn't then I would recommend you go in to see a cognitive-behavioral therapist to deal with what sounds like some depression or dysthymia you are dealing with.

You need to know that the research is very clear about the fact there are much poorer outcomes for children, and specifically infants whose mothers are suffering from untreated depression. There are issues with attachment that can affect them their entire lives. So if you find yourself having trouble doing it for yourself, then do it for your little boy.

If you are on the Eastside in Seattle, come see me! I am private pay only but I can work something out with you or I can recommend another referral in your price range or closer to your home. You're not going to get the level of help you need off of any message board. But you can find those with the expertise to help you and start you on the right path to feeling better in as little as 12 weeks.

Sincerely,
N. Laurent, M.A., R.C.
Clinical Psychotherapist
Eastside Family Renewal Service
____@____.com

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Hi K.! I'm J.. Well...join the club, you're NOT alone!
Being a mommy takes a LOT out of a woman. I had four kids in
five years, I really know! I just had to get serious about
taking care of myself (most mommies put themselves LAST on the
priority list, don't they?). You gotta catch up on your sleep, get enough exercise during the day (as if chasing after a one year old isn't enough!!) and take a really good, organic
vitamin supplement (NOT the ones you can get at the grocery
store...they aren't fresh or organic). There's also something
called LUMINEX you can take that helped me bounce right back,
too, and it helped me get my energy back. If you want some
info on it, e-mail Sarah at ____@____.com
and she can e-mail you back (she's in California). She's
the 21-year old mother of a very active baby, and she told
me about Luminex several years ago, after it helped her.
Hope you make sure to take good care of yourself for YOU
and for your toddler!
:>) J.

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If this has been going on for a long time, you might want to talk to your doctor about post partem depression. I have been exceptionally tired as well, and found an insanely easy trick. One syptom of being tired is dehydration. I have found the more water I drink, the more energy I have. It's hard, because who wants to drink water all day long, but it really works. Try to find things to do out of the house. Look up MOPS International on line. They can hook you up with a Mom's group in your area. There should be a group for teen mom's,so you can be with people who understand your life.

Wow, sweetie...it sounds like a tough situation! What I've found that works for me is kind of silly, really - I read books, in my free time when Baby is asleep, with women in them that inspire me to be better. Right now, it's a Jane Austen kick. Jane Austen's heroines don't do chores, sure, but...they are all active, happy, helpful people with clean homes. It's the "sad" people in the story with sloppy homes. So, I can assume clean home = happy girl! It really helps me. Also, sometimes I'll just sit down on a Sunday night and take stock of my life - what do I want to change? If I have a solid "To-Do" list on Monday morning, I think I'm a lot more motivated during the week to get it all done!

I had to set a schedule for myself. My advice would be look into going to school. Look for a program where you can take your child with you to a school supported childcare, or lab school. The more you sit at home, the less you will want to do. It could be a mood, but it is going to continue to drag you down. Do not let it. Be in charge of yourself. You are a mom,as well as a woman. You may need to continue to live with your family, but they should not be taking care of you. A part-time job or on-line training might also be useful so that you can see your self worth. You can do anything you set your mind on. JF

Make sure you're not suffering from post partum depression, then have your doctor test you for thyroid problems, that's what I had and felt the same way. Make sure they test all three levels though, my first test they didn't and it said I was fine! It may be hard to get motivated when your parents are doing everything for you. For the health and wellbeing of yourself, your son, and your family start slow with one class or a part time job maybe. Once you feel good about yourself and your contributions its easy to keep going. Good luck!

it is possible that you have a medical condition? i had no clue that i was ill with a messed up thyroid. i was always tired and could barely function. little did i know that i needed medication. i didnt even go to the dr until a planned parenthood nurse made me the appointment. get it checked out , youll be glad you did.

K., You should not be so tired at such a young age. I try to live by this: "Don't give yourself a choice when there's something needed done, or you'll take the easy way out." If you're not in school or working then you should be a full time "mom". Your child needs to know that you are his mom, not the grandparents. Get up and get busy. Your self esteem will get better...Lots of luck. Your worth it. B.

HI K.-
I understand exactly how you feel. I am a 39yo first time mother and although our situations are different, I often feel the exact same way. I think no matter what age you are, it is hard. You are very fortunate to have a loving and helpful family. After I had my daughter struggled for about a month and finally went on anti-depressants. I stopped after 4 months, but I have recently realized that I think I might need them again. The best things to do is to talk to those around you, reach out for help, check with your doctor, eat well and exercise. Having a child is a life changing experience, take advantage of the benefits around you to help deal with the daily stuff.
A.

Hello K., By any chance are you on any type of birth control? It could be your birth control. I know for myself, and Im a 35 year old mother of two and Ive taken depovera after I had my son and it made me feel bummed out and tired ALL the time. I have since stopped getting those shots I felt 100% better and went back to get my Bachelors degree. Once you get enough energy to get back into school or find a job you'll be surprised how good you'll feel about yourself, your son and your situation. Good luck girl! You can do it!

Honestly, it sounds like depression to me. I was exactly the same way, but had a short temper as well. When I started on medication, I had more energy, more patience, and a drive to get things done. It is definitely worth a try, and if you do not see results, you can always go off the meds.

You have a lot on your plate to deal with, and it makes perfect sense that it would make you want to curl up in a ball and let it all happen around you, but you are a mom now, and you owe it to your son to take care of his mother. When you are happy, he will be happy. Babies and young kids tend to copy our moods.

I'm sorry to hear you are feeling this way. I think you need to share with your parents how you are feeling and then consider talking to a mental health professional - it sounds like you might be suffering from post-partum depression. It's very common to suffer from PPD, even a year after your baby is born. It's important to take care of yourself in addition to taking care of your baby. Good luck.

You should seek the advice of a health care professional immediately. Post partum depression doesn't always set in right after the birth of a child. It can take between 6 months to a year to manifest itself. There are other things that could be wrong, such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome...although that is harder to diagnose, especially when you have a new baby at home. Depression can be serious, and although I'm a big advocate of taking prescription medications if necessary, there are many things that you can do without taking that route. But the first thing you need to do is see a doctor. Good luck to you and Jared!

Hi K.,

I was a teen mother myself and I know what you are dealing with right now. You may be battling some mild depression so talk to your doctor. Is there a reason you are not in school or working? My best advise to you is to get to school!!! This is the most important thing you can do for yourself and your child. I put myself through college and after a long break, plan to start a masters degree this fall. You are in the very difficult position of wanting/needing your independence (like every teenager does) but also having someone rely on you 100%. You are fortunate to have your parents helping you out, but that won't last forever. I would encourage you to meet with a college counselor and investigate some of your interests. There are TONS of scholarships available to you as a single mother. I went to 4 years at OSU and never paid for a dime of it. I always had grants and scholarships. It will be difficult but so worth it!!! Also, exercise is always a good pick me up. It's really hard to get started but once you do you will notice the effects immediately. Put that baby in a stroller and get out of the house! Good luck.

I went through the same kind of slump you did although I'm a bit older than you. I remember having my son and going through a slump where I just had no energy and motivation. Part of it could be post partum depression and you just not know it. Talk to your parents about how you feel, it might help a bit. Another thing is, after you have a child, your body loses a lot of vitamins and energy it was keeping for the baby. You could change your diet to something healthier. If you are eating too much salt or sugar, that could slow your body down as well. In some people, too much sugar drags you down. Sugar takes time to turn into energy and in the meantime, it just sits in the body to process itself. Too much salt can make you feel bloated. Also, watch your trans fat. That's a doozy. Sometimes just eating healthier makes a big difference. Also, try going out and getting a bit of exercise. Try a small walk with or without your son, even if it's just a few blocks, might help get your blood flowing a bit better. I'm not a big exerciser, but just walking a bit each day with son in tow, makes a big difference. Good luck hon! :D ~B.

its important to try to do things for yourself...even something small. ask your parents to watch your son for a few or while he's napping, go take a relaxing bubble bath, paint your nail, do what ever helps you relax and makes you feel good, even if its only for 10 or 20 minutes. sometimes as parents we forget to do this for our own well being. if you allow yoursself some time for you it may help make the rest of your day a little easier. Also you can try making a plan for the day a short list of things to do and try to keep to it, when your staying home all the time it can be easy to loose structure to your day and slowing do less and less until you want to do nothing. i am a stay at home mom living with my parents so i can stay home with my son and i can relate to your problem. For me the best thing is to make sure i do something i enjoy while my son is sleeping and plan fun things for us to do while he's awake. Good luck to you.

Sounds like a little depression or seasonal affective disorder. I find it pretty hard to do anything this time of year, but when the sun comes out I get a burst of energy and feel almost giddy. Usually I make deals with myself, I can sit and veg after 15 minutes of exercise, etc.

Hi K.,

I have had this problem at various times, too. You are probably a little depressed (or maybe my problem which was mild anxiety). Talk to your Dr. he/she should be able to recommend either a counselor or some other type of help for you. If they don't help or refer you to anyone, see another Dr.
Don't be afraid of medication either it can be amazingly helpful.
Good Luck!
-M. B.

I am a mom of two boys 4 and 1 and my youngest is still a terrible sleeper. I am so tired aoo the time and would love to veg out sometimes too. But I think the best motivator is my kids. I need to do the things necessary for my children. It may be hard to get going but you eill find that once you are going, it is nice to out in the world and doing what you need to do for your child. Make a plan and go for it. "Just Do It" and once you are out of the house, you will feel good. I know it is just getting going. Go back to school, or take classes. Plan that on MWF you have clases and TTH you work for 4 hours. something you have to goet going for and be responsible for will keep you going once you have a routine. You have to break your old routine up, and force yourself to get going. That is what I have to do.

K., the first thing you need to do is decide what you want to accomplish. If you have nothing to do then you will do nothing. Set some goals..not big unaccomplishable goals...small, I can get this done goals.
Make a list of all the things you want to get done this month. Then make a list of things that need to be done in each week of the month so that you can divide them up in easy tasks for each day.
Finally, make a scheduled time to get up...have a routine.
Set a time to shower and get dressed. Obviously you need to this around your son so you need to know his routine as well.

You could even try setting a timer...say, I'm going to get him blocks to play with and then set the time for 10 min and wash dishes or vac. Then play with him or change him etc. And set another timer to accomplish another task.

This way you can tend to your sons needs and still get things done. It is hard to have motivation when you feel all you do is clean up after a baby. It may sound militant or silly to set a schedule but that way you have something to look forward to, dishes...then a walk in the park, a nap then laundry, change Jared, take out the trash. Also, the worse you feel, the more depressed you feel and the more you want to eat or snack...I call it my grazing mood....you need to exercise to feel better...walking is wonderful! Hope some of that was helpful! Good luck.

I was real tired after my 14 month old was born. I blame it on having her at age 40 :). I decided I needed to get back into the swing of things and started eating healthier and exercising. Even if it's getting down on the floor and doing some push-ups, sit-ups and leg lifts. That gets your heart rate up and lets the blood flow. Follow this with a 15 minute walk around the block with your son in the stroller and you're set!!! By eating healthy you also get more energy. A combination of the two and you should start feeling better in the next few weeks, if this is metabolism caused (if not you may want to see someone about possible depression). It's hard to get motivated and at first the exercise may seem difficult--that just tells you that you need it:)

Hey Keysha,
Sorry this is such a late response ...

I can so empathize with how you are feeling. I too began suffering from a depression when my daughter was close to a year old. I tried changing my diet and getting more exercise, but that didn't help. Finally, I saw an acupuncturist, and I felt much better. Acupuncture can be expensive, but there are a lot of community-based clinics in town that offer really reasonable rates. If cost isn't an issue (it certainly was with me), I would recommend Five Elements Acupuncture. It isn't anymore expensive than Traditional Chinese acupuncture but the practitioners rarely bill insurance if you have it, so the cost comes out of pocket.

If you are at all interested, write back and i will give you the name and number of a Five Elements acupuncturist. Good luck, and I hope you are soon able to feel like yourself again. I think that the isolation of being a new mom can be so hard on us. I wish you well.
K.

My suggestion would be to bundle up the baby- and yourself- and go for a walk every morning after his breakfast no matter what the weather is (barring ice!). FORCE YOURSELF! vbg Just getting out in the fresh air and walking is really energizing and I find it really gets my day off to a great start. The change of scenery is good for your son, too. You can talk to him about the rain, the clouds, encourage him to listen to the birds or the sound of the raindrops, etc. At his age, a stoller would probably be helpful but it won't be long before you both can walk. If I am out in the car running errands,I carry a towel and blanket in the car in case we stop at a park-on clear days. (If you don't have access to a car, throw it in the stroller.)That way I can dry off the swings or slides and, if we just sit and look around, the blanket is great to cover a bench or to wrap up in. The bottom line is-just get out of the house. Sometimes I even go to the mall on the west side. They have a cute play area and it would provide a change of scenery for both of you.
Once you get moving, you'll be surprised how much better you will feel.

K.,
I went through this too and still have days like this once in a while. I guess my driving force now is that my children (three and a half and one and a half) can't do things for themselves and I want them to grow up in a clean and tidy environment. My mother used to say, "I do it because it needs to be done." What I'm learning is that it really isn't about motivation, but about mindset. Start by placing a chunk of time in your day for you only. You can do whatever you want, watch tv, get a snack, read, take a bath etc. Make that time special for you. Then split up the rest of your day into doing things that bring meaning to you and your baby - whether that is cleaning, playing with baby, feeding baby, reading to baby, going for a walk with baby. Think about every action in a way that says, is this good for me or my baby. If it is, do it! It is a hard funk to get out of, but I think if you know that you will have some time for you every day, you'll find the motivation to get done the things you need to to be a happy mommy.

I have a friend who experienced a little post partum depression and it happens at different stages and shows in different ways. It may be something you should go see a doctor about just in case. Also, I found that a schedule is the most important thing for me and my 9m old. It allows me to set goals for the day and have time to get them done depending on her naps, feeding, etc. Another thing is if your baby is not sleeping well and you are not sleeping well than you are going to feel exhausted every day so make sure that sleep is a priority. Good luck I know it is hard but I think it is great that you are taking resposibility as a teen mom!

You sound exactly like I did! I finally learned the hard way that I had post pardum depression and it completely took over my life. I still go through bouts of depression now and again, but now that I know what it is, I see the signs and can get to the doctor. I take welbutrin xr and it works great. It even helps curb the appetite a bit. The best thing you can do is to talk to someone as soon as possible. Talk to your mom and get in to see a doctor. You can even talk to your baby's pediatrician. Just talk to someone. Try to get outside while it is sunny and definitely take time out for yourself. When you have a baby, your entire life revolves around taking care of the baby and all of your needs just get pushed aside. Go for a walk, go shopping alone, read a good book while your taking a long hot bath. Just 10 minutes to yourself a couple of times per day can totally change your mood. I have three kids and I have been there. Hang in there. It will get better. I promise!

Having a child is a major life change--and to do so at a younger age I think, has a bit higher potential of setting up the scenario you describe as having. ( my youngest daughter had her first child at your age--and went thru much the same thing you say you're feeling)

Depression--be it mild or severe, is something which needs to be discussed with your doctor.

Something as simple as getting out for a daily walk--getting some exercise & fresh air, can be just the thing you need to put the wind back in your sails--medication isn't and shouldn't always be the answer.

You didn't say how active--or activity-filled your life was prior to the birth of your baby--regardless of your age--the reality of being a mother (no matter how much you love your child) can be let down, from what we anticipated it to be.

Is there a 'baby & mommy' activity group in your area you might participate in? Your baby is at a great age to begin this type of activity together!

I wish you the best!

Hi K.,

I hope that you are not suffering from depression? I have had bouts of depression in the past and your symptoms seem very similar. I would recommend talking with your doctor first. Being a mom is an overwhelming thing...even to someone who is much older than you. In addition I think that you might feel that you are missing out on being a child yourself - you know I don't think I considered myself an adult until I was in my 20's. Do you feel like you're stuck or don't have any direction? Maybe taking some courses or making progress toward one of your goals would make you feel better. I know that I felt clueless after my son came along...always wondering what was going to come next? Sometimes making a goal for yourself and then taking baby steps towards it can help. Surround yourself with others you enjoy (mom groups, students your age, etc.) and make a point to give yourself time for interaction each week. You might not want to at first, but forcing yourself to do it can help pull you out of this place where you feel stuck. Go out and exercise - that will help you mentally as well. Change up your life because you don't seem to be getting fultillment right now. Make a schedule for yourself with a few new things incorporated into it and stick to it for a while. See if it changes things for you. The most important thing is to see the doctor though...you need to rule out depression. Big hugs to you...and hang in there girl!

The always tired comment makes me want to suggest that you speak with your doctor about checking your thyroid levels. Don't settle, talk with you doctor about these issues!

best of luck

Hi K.
I'm sure most, if not all of the moms out there have been where you are. You are not alone. Here are some of the things that helped me regain energy and motivation:
1. Change of diet. If you drink coffee or highly caffeinated drinks - you will get a burst of energy and then crash. Especially if they are accompanied with high sugar intake.
Seriously - switch to tea. Try to cut down on soda, coffee, sugar. The first few days will be rough, but you will feel better after that - guaranteed!
2. Make sure you are getting some fruit everyday and some fresh veggies. Even if it's just apples and carrots. Whatever you like to eat. Dried fruit is good. Nuts are really high in vitamins also. If your body is getting the right nutrients - it will function 100 times better.
3. Exercise. Even if you just get out of the house and walk around the block a couple of times. Exercise increase your blood circulation which increase oxygen in all your cells. It is an instant energy booster.
4. Get out of the house. Take your son for a walk. Get involved with a local play group, go to the park. Take a class. Join a study group. Anything. You need a reason to get up and do - so make yourself one. Even if it seems silly.

Love yourself! : ) You're awesome! Have a great day.

Hey K.,
Don't worry, you just sound like you need a little out and about time. Trust me it's hard to get started, though once you do you should feel a whole lot better. Do try to get out and just go for a walk with Jared. At first you will feel tired, then it should give you some awesome energy and motivation. Maybe at first (if you all get along well) see if your mom or other dad will help you or go with you. Please let us know if this works for you. Take care and good luck!!

K.,
I'm so happy to see you reach out. Many people in your situation wouldn't even have that motivation. It's a start.

I believe there is a touch of "I'm not sure who I am syndrome". And "I am different than most girls my age". Both of those ideas would be expected at your age in your condition.

Begin by simply thinking about the fact we are not all the
same and it will take you quite a while to find out exactly who you are. You need not be in a hurry to find out and avoid
labeling yourself.

Also, what would you be doing if you were motivated? Allow all
the ideas, whether practical or not to be a seed for you. Seeds that you will place in the best soil and water regularly
when you believe all things are possible. Meaning looking at each idea with a positive state of mind. You are so very young
and have time to do soooo much.

There are some things you can do if you want to be your healthiest. If you do enjoy eating alot, at least look at what you are eating, if your ready, try to eat as many fruits
as you can. If you google health, you will almost always see
fruit. An orange may cost 25 cents. They are usually faster
and less expensive than even fast food. If a orange doesn't do
the trick add a pear and a nectarine or grapes, raisins. Whatever you like. Drink fruit juice and water. Eat nuts of
all kinds. Add V-8 juice. Or vegetables of your choice. Try
eating eggs and cheese instead of meat. Meat can be too heavy for our bodies. The idea is to get the body processing the food more quickly so it won't be so busy digesting.
Next look at your mental and emotional health. Our thoughts
release chemicals in our bodies making us feel the way we do.
Postive thoughts will make us feel our best. I have heard thinking alot about the past can make our bodies more tired than staying in the present moment. Practice staying in the
present. Emotionally, how do you feel? Search your heart like
you would use a search engine on the computer. Really allow yourself to feel all the emotions we have as humans. What do you love, hate, fear are angry about? Can you live closer to your heart than your head? Give your heart a chance. Many times your heart will move you.
Ideas about happiness sometimes get in our way. You were born with happy the same as you were born with toes. It's not outside of you or dependent on anything more than you recognizing it. Sounds easy. Because it is!
How are you spritually and socially? Ask yourself honestly.
Just a few more suggestions from one who has walked in your
shoes. Get some fresh air. Move your body. Even it is rebels
at first it will be glad you did. Do anything to move it. Anything that comes to mind. Put on your favorite music and
let your body move to the music..Dance with your son. Your son
is only going to be one.....now....let him help you. Help you to move your body and to move your emotions.
Last, you need not accept things just as they are but it is
where your beginning. Know where you are by how you are feeling and know you can change it. Your will is stronger than
you will ever know. Let it work for you! You are growing just like that little boy and the same old thoughts and ideas are not going to work for you. You need new ideas to spark your spirit into action.
One more idea. Have your thyroid checked.
Good Luck. I have a great feeling about you! Fill your heart with more love than you can bear. Giving it and receiving! That's true success!

Dear K.,
First of all, you sound like a really sweet, good mommy.This must be overwhelming for you at your age, but the most important thing for you to do is take good care of your baby. If your parents both work, you could get really great practice for having your own home someday by doing as much housework as possible when baby is content, and you could be really creative and cook your parents a new meal every night. They would be so proud and I am sure they would appreciate your efforts. Everything will fall into place- but you are the person who will make that possible.
Congratulations on your baby,
Hairdresser L.

K.,
You sound like me in 2006. The worst part of it was I ended up in the hospital for 11 days away from my husband and children because I needed serious help. My suggestion is to focus on your diet, go for walks and when the sun is out, get into it. I love the sun. In the winter because of the lack of sun, people tend to get depressed, sleep more often, have less energy and lose passion and desire. You're very young to feel the way you do. I'm not a doctor, but I feel that you have classic symptoms of depression. I went through depression not knowing I had it for over 20 years. I have two boys ages 7 & 5. In 2006, things got very bad. I became easily overwhelmed, stressed out and couldn't leave my home. I layed in bed a lot and lost a lot of weight. In 1 month I went from 120 lbs. to 97 lbs. The medications the doctors gave me weren't the right ones for me and I didn't like the side effects. Two of them sent me to the ER. I finally got the help I needed from a wonderful Psychiatrist. No, not a psychologist, a psychiatrist. The difference is one talks, the other prescribes medication. (They figure a specific recipe for you because medications are not a one size fits all like most physicians think.) They don't just give you a drug because everybody is taking it, they give you what is the correct recipe for you. I have successfully recovered over the past year and now live a happy, productive life. I enjoy time with my kids as well as "mommy time" which is time to myself. (Today I spent three hours at my sons pre-school for a Valentine Celebration and had a great time.) Before I got help, I couldn't stand being around people or at most children. Now I love being at my children's schools. I even read for my 7 year olds' class once a month and I love the kids. I watch what I eat and try to eat a variety of fresh vegetables daily as well as animal protein. I don't eat pre-packaged/processed foods, and I don't consume caffeine or energy drinks. I have an ultra supportive family who feels that my contribution to the family is not working for money, it's taking care of my children and me. I love my family dearly and wouldn't trade them for anything. They have been with me through major sickness and health. I have a wonderful husband of 13 years and without his support I literally wouldn't be here today. I would have died. Take care of you because without you, your son wouldn't have a mom. Make sure you thank your parents and family for being there for you and helping you along the way. Also make sure you let them know how grateful you are by doing chores around the house without being asked, or offer to do something for someone. My father-in-law loves it when I do that. I wish you many blessing for you and Jared. You deserve to feel better. Only you can make yourself feel better. Start today by finding some sunshine and letting it beam onto your face. Just close your eyes, breathe and thank God you are there for Jared.
Be Well,
A.

Are you taking good care of yourself? Your baby? Your share of the chores? That's a lot in itself. Give yourself some rest and alone time.

How long has this been going on? If its just Fall and Winter this may be natural. See what happens this Spring and if you are still "dead" see a doctor for a complete physical.

Treat yourself with love and hang in there!

You are probably overwelmed right now. Take little steps to get your self going. Make a list. Make each item small, maybe even half done like make bed or fold one load of laundry . It makes you feel better when you can mark off items on the list and before you know it you have completed some of the things that are nagging at you. As soon as you can get back to school. Look into online classes. Finishing school will be a great accomplishment. Give your parents a hug and tell them how much you appreciate their help. But also tell them you would like to get on with yours and your boys life. Can they give you any advice on where to start. Toddlers are a lot of work, but make sure you are taking time to enjoy him.

I think you may be depressed because of your situation. You should talk to a Dr. I would also suggest that perhaps there are ways for you to go to school, at night or work a little so you can get some self-worth and motivation from that. You need to find something to look forward to every day.

Hi K.! Looks like you've received lots of great advice, so I won't really add to that...just stress the healthy eating, exercise, "me" time...and love yourself! I really just want to say that you are very strong and aware to understand what you are feeling and to take the action to change things for yourself! That's also a great thing to teach your son indirectly. They learn more than we usually realize just by watching us. Joy to you on this incredible journey!

Hi K.,

It sounds like you are depressed. Having a baby be dependent on you is a lot of responsibility at such a young age and a big transition at any age. Are you involved in any teen parent support groups? It is wonderful that your parents are supportive, but I think talking with others who are in your same situation would help.

Another food for thought...are your parents doing so much that nothing is being required of you and you don't really feel needed? Are you taking full responsibility for the care of your son? He is YOUR JOB right now. If you are just sitting, eating, sleeping, where is he? He needs his mommy's attention and care (grandma and grandpa should be GRANDPARENTS and a support to you- not parents to your son!). I'm sure it's easier to let them do it if they are willing, but if you start feeling like you have a purpose each day, I think you will feel better. Good Luck

PS It is very admirable that you are keeping your child. It will be tough, but very rewarding!

K....first of all, good for you for asking for help about this. A lot of moms don't want to admit they're feeling this way. The short answer is that you are suffering from depression. It's not your fault and not something you can just "snap out of." It's a chemical imbalance or malfunction in your brain that happens to so many of us. My daughter was 2 before I figured out this was what I was dealing with. I had always thought depression was something people had when something was really wrong in their life but soon I learned that depression is when there is really no reason to feel like that and you do anyway! The good news is that there are some GREAT medications out there that can really help with this (Tom Cruise...you can kiss my booty). Please talk with your doctor about this and maybe even pick up the book Brooke Shields wrote after the birth of her first daughter. You're not alone K....sometimes I think it's the dirty little secret mom's don't talk much about.

Hang in there...you can respond back to me if you ever feel like you need someone to talk to.

L.

P.S. I'm a stay at home mom to 8 and 5 year old girls.

I think you sound depressed. Talk to your regular doctor, and be frank. Anti-depressants are not magic, but they do help.

Hi K.! Amen to Peg's very wise response regarding possible depression. If it turns out that depression is not a factor, don't be too hard on yourself ~ your child is at SUCH a challenging stage! Walking and climbing and into everything, with insatiable curiosity. It's hard to get anything done without being interrupted umpteen times and so you start to figure, why bother?! They say that "the hardest part is getting started" and I've found this to be so true. When I'm having a hard time finding motivation I sometimes just literally have to force myself up off the couch or out of bed and put one foot in front of the other, and once I've taken the first step in tackling a project it flows. Sometimes even if I'm moving really slow, making just a little bit of progress will spark some energy. Know that you're sure not alone on this one!

Take care!

I am so proud of you for reaching out and knowing that this is not a "normal" way to be.
I mean, I do have many moments of wanting to be alone, or just wanting to stare at the t.v. and eat, oh, whatever I can find. I get that. It's just that it's not good behavior day after day after day.
So. Is there any way that you can go to a doctor? There are so many reasons for you to be feeling this way. (Is it 'feeling'? Or is it 'medical'?)
Make sure you take a shower/bath every morning. Go for a walk with your son. Weather permitting, go to the park. Or find an indoor play-park. I'm sure someone here could help you find one, if you need.
Have a plan to DO these things every morning.
Please let us know how you're doing!

Hi K.--
I agree with the other responses that it could be depression. If you feel it is, get to you doctor and have a good, long talk with him or her.

On the other hand, you could just need something else to do besides caring for your 1 year old. You said your parents are doing everything for you until you can finish school. Now might be a great time to do that. There are many online programs if you just can't get to school. It would give you something else to focus on besides being a mom. Your brain would be working in a different way and it just might pull you out of the way you feel.

Hi K., I'm sorry to hear your having a tough time, have you considered seeking help from a Dr. maybe you have postpardom depression. I went for a full year after my son was born until I figured out that I had postpardom I started seeing a psychiatrist and got on some anti depressants and I feel like a new person. Do yourself and your son a favor and GET HELP so this doesn't affect your child, your the mom, you need to be strong and figure out why you feel so down. Take care

It sounds like you have the classic signs of clinical depression. I would talk to your doctor about what you are experiencing. I've gone through a depression and I got on an antidepressant which made life more tolerable.

Best of luck to you. You have a lot on your plate.

Hi K.. I am an older mom (42) of a 1 1/2 and 3 1/2 year old. I am also a Physical Therapist. I suggest you look at your diet and see how much sugar you are taking in and if you are getting enough protein and fluids (water mostly). It is amazing how your body's metabolism plays into your energy levels. Cut out candy, soda, and foods containing alot of sugar for a week and see if you see a difference. I would also try eating more raw vegetables, cheeses, low fat meats and nut butters--along with lots of water to drink. Also, set up a loose daily schedule for you and your son: (example) read books @ 9:00, play with toys on the floor 9:30, nap @..., lunch at ... They love schedules and it helps so much it getting things done that you need to get done.

Hi K.,
Have you even finished high school yet? If it seems like it will be too much to actually go to school you should consider finishing through a homeschooling program. My youngest sister had her son when she was 16. She still had to finish school (which she did through homeschooling) and then she got a part time waitressing job during the summer. My parents and I helped her with her son so she could accomplish these things. Please don't take this the wrong way but you are the one who is going to have to raise your son. You shouldn't dump that burden on your parents, they're already dealing with their own kids. Think about your childs future. Do you want him to be successful and have everything or do you want to just stay at home and not do anything. I think the best thing is to just take it a step at a time. RIght now my sister is 20 almost 21. She is working full time as a bookeeper, going to college to become an attorney and planning her wedding for March of this year. She was unmotivated after the birth of her son but she soon realized that she was the one who is supposed to be their for him. My whole family is so incredibly proud of her.

It sounds like you might have depression. Talk to your mom and see a dr. if you dont start feeling better.

I have the same problem! I think this time of year it's especially difficult because we have cabin fever. Winter has been long and we're ready for sunshine. This time of year people are prone to depression. I think one of the best things you can do is get out of the house. Take your baby to the library. Go grocery shopping. The more you're around people, the better. I know you don't feel like it, but if you can talk yourself into it, it will get better! Or you can talk to your doctor. It's not uncommon for postpartum depression even a year or more after you have your baby so it might be a good idea to make an appointment. I hope you feel better soon!

I would suggest to go with Jared for walks, he will enjoy it, take him to the park. You might be needing a littgle more sunlight.
How is your nutrition these days? Not eating right is often a contributor to the way you are feeling. Are there play groups in your area with other teen moms?
The more you isolate your self the most you will feel. Socialize with your litle boy, parks, play groups...

Aw, honey, I think you need to talk to someone in counseling or look into going on head meds. My friends and I have been on Lexapro and Zoloft and other drugs for depression, and they have changed our lives for the better. You deserve more, and your son deserves more. Go get some help, okay?

Best,

Audrey

You might see if you can see a doctor to explain your symptoms. When I had feelings like that one of my problems was that I have hypothyroidism. Have you checked out babycenter. com? I like that site for the explainations on various problems that moms have.

The other thing that has helped me is focusing on my children and keeping in mind what would be best for them now and in the long run.

I found that when I am in a funk, doing things for other people is the main thing that gets me going again.

Doing something for your Mom to make her day easier, something for your little brothers? your Dad? Little steps in doing something for someone else might be your golden ticket.

Hi K.,

I feel the same way a lot of the time. I have a 4 year old and a 2 year old.

What I've discovered helps me is to take care of myself properly...take a multivitamin, exercise (which I could do more of), eat right, go to bed early and don't sleep in late, and see a doctor, get some bloodwork done. Could you be anemic?

Secondly, keeping busy doing something I am excited about helps me a ton. It's hard to do on some days, but if I have some projects going then I start to feel productive and like I have a plan...like I'm going somewhere. It may help to write down your goals and then every day it will be like you're working toward whatever those goals are.

Good luck!

Hi K.,

I've been there, too. It sounds like you may have some depression. It's very common. Some things that helped me were: getting out for some "me" time: going to see a movie, going to a yoga class, getting a cup of coffee and reading a book at a coffee shop, or any kind of exercise, like going for a fast walk to get the heart rate up. Exercise can really help lift the mood and give you more energy. It's worked for me.

You might want to meet other moms that have young ones around the same age as Jared. I highly recommend the Parent Education classes offered by the Willamette Falls Hospital's Health Education Center, in Oregon City. If you just call Willamette Falls Hospital, and ask for the Health Education Center's Parent Education classes, they will direct you right away. The classes are AWESOME! I went for years (I have 2 kids), and it was great because I got to meet other moms, and you bring your child to the class, too. It's taught by a child educator, in an informal, very comfortable, supportive way. A group of moms with their kids come, and the room is set-up so the kids can play, and the moms can talk and learn, and feel supported, to. There are other moms out there that are feeling like you, and coming together can really feel supportive. All sorts of topics are covered, from eating habits, sleep issues, behavior issues, and even how moms can take care of themselves! Nurturing the mother is very important. So, I highly recommend the class, it really, really helped me, when I was at home, with a young one and felt like you do now. I even met some of my closest friends through that class.

And, remember, the power of exercise, even just going for a 30 minute walk, once a day, can really help energize you and shift your mood. It's helped me! :-)

Warm wishes to you,
A.
Mother of 2 girls, ages 3 and 5

K.,
You may be experiencing some hormonal changes after the birth of your son. I went through this eighteen years ago, when I had my son. Is there a place where you can go to get counciling? That helped me alot.There are many who take fees on a sliding scale. I know it may sound weird, but just having a neutral person to talk to really helps.
Your fatigue is real, you've been through many big changes and one thing I have learned - you grow when you get help and see insights into your life - as you experience it.
Be easy on yourself and do at least one self-nurturing thing a day. Even it is just a bath, quiet walk, or reading a chapter in a good novel.
T.

I'm so sorry that you are feeling so down. It's important for you to take care of yourself. Make sure you're eating well, go for walks, whatever it takes to make you feel good. It sounds like you have a supportive family, but I'm sure it is hard sometimes for someone in your position to feel like you fit in with other moms around you. Please reach out and find the support you need. Do you have a playgroup or any other mom friends who can help you talk through the hard times? Please feel free to send me a message if you want. I wish you all the best...mol

I am a great procrastinator and that being combined with the mundane, almost hourly chores of cleaning, re-cleaning and such, I was quite happy to sit and not do a thing, some days my kids were lucky to get dressed or eat something more than a sandwich. To make matters worse, I was always tired and crashed for an afternoon nap that could last a couple hours.

To simple things I did was:

I started making some easy commitments (a church bible study or M.O.P.S etc) that had me meeting with others, a set time and got me out of the house.

I also told my doctor how tired I was (my baby was about 6 months) and he said it was okay to take the herb Ginseng. That helped with the tiredness.

*****************************

Some other things to think about; do you find yourself tired certain times a year?

I had bad problems with allergies and was tired a lot during the heat and pollen times of summer and spring.
**************
Lack of sun/fresh air? Get outside for some serious playtime :-) head to the park a couple times a week even if for a half hour. Take a walk, something to get outside.
***************

Are you exercising? Exercising has a direct affect on your mood, and can help you feel stronger and able to take on the day.
**************
Are you getting enough iron? A lack of iron can leave you feeling weak and tired and when you feel like that, you won't really want to do much of anything.
*****************
Talk to your doctor. It could be clinical depression or not.
here are some links I thought might be helpful.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clinical_depression

http://www.childbirthsolutions.com/articles/postpartum/fi...

*****************

Give yourself room to feel emotions. Don't let them control you though.
Did you have a bad day? Don't let your mind suddenly become consumed that the next day and the next day and the next will be bad too. Give yourself a clean slate emotionally each morning.
******************
Don't hold perfection as your standard. Keep high standards (i.e. going back to school, getting a good job, educating your child, etc) but don't freak out if you don't see major progress in a day or week or more. Map out a plan of action, complete with steps you need to do every day to accomplish your goals.

Oh, and here a great link for healthy food, along with recipes and more. I LOVE this site, give it a quick look and you might find it makes the idea of eating healthy, a lot easier.
http://www.whfoods.org/foodstoc.php

I hope you feel better soon :-)

c.

Dear K., It is wonderful that you have reached out for some advice on how to get motivated about life again! Just being the mother of a one year old is exhausting in itself. I became a first time mother at age 20 (30 yrs. ago) and I remember feeling just like you do now. Looking back, I know I was dealing with post-partum depression. It took about two years before I felt like my old self again. I couldn't get excited about anything! There are SO many first time mothers who are experiencing that same, awful tired feeling. Take baby steps to start with. Write out an easy meal plan for yourself focusing on healthy, energy enhancing foods. Then, make sure that you get a 15-20 minute walk everyday. If you miss a day, don't worry, just shoot for everyday to allow those misses when they happen. Also, it wouldn't hurt to talk to a doctor about post-partum depression. You could definitely be suffering from depression. You don't necessarily have to feel sad all of the time, just tired and unmotivated. You are not alone, dear, it is very common. You sound like a very gentle, mature young woman. You are blessed to have a beautiful little boy, and loving family. Tell your family everyday how much you love and appreciate them. Doing that will give you an amazing energy boost, and it helps them too. This trying time in your life will definitely pass. I promise! I wouldn't say this if I didn't know personally. Right now, I know, it feels like it will never be sunny again, but it will! I will keep you in my prayers. God Bless You, S. Teague

K., It sounds like you have a one year old to help give you motivation. I hope you are his main care giver and are not letting others take over most of his care. By the way, my oldest son is also name Jared. I do know what it is like at times to just not want to do anything. It can be really hard to choose to have a good attitude when you are tired. Putting a hop in your step, a smile on your face, or whatever helps to change your mood can help. With four kids, and even when I only had one, I do a lot of praying - all through out the day.
I hope this is helpful.

I feel like I had the same problem, when I had both my kids. I think you just need to find something to do that you would enjoy. With my first baby, I got a part-time job and with the second one I decided to start going to school online. Another thing I did to get going was I would get ready for the say like I had somewhere to go, take a shower, do my hair and make-up, it made me want to get out of the house. (I have a 4 and a 2 year old and I had the first at 19)

Wow, 17 is a hard age to be a mother. I suggest getting back into school and seeking free counseling once you get back in from your school of choice, public high school is free until the age of 20 I believe. It sounds like you have a case of post partum blues. I was 26 when I had my daughter and thank God for the wonderful support I had from my husband. I had Post Partum from the time she was 5 months until 14 months. It doesn't always hit right after they are born. I had to tell him don't take this personally, it's not you , my whole world has changed and now our big house feels like a big prision. Every day he had off we had to go outside of the house to do something even if it was a mundane as getting the groceries, just so I could have contact with the outside world. The other things that made a difference are we had just moved into this house when she was 5 months old and it was painted dark colors mostly green everywhere and they had used gloss paint which throws shadows. He started painting everything, we choose the colors together. We choose a French Vanilla Yellow for the walls and a very light pink for the ceiling. It made all the difference for me. Things will get easier as far a raising your son. Just keep trying new things until you find something that works for you. You may not find something for a lond time, but when you do find it, you will feel so relieved. I really do suggest finding counseling if you cna't find a soultion on your own. Sometimes talking it out to a professional who is detached can really help.

Hi K.,

I have been feeling the same way for a couple of months since I had my son, and I finally got sick and tired of being sick and tired. What I've done so far that has really helped me, is kick myself outside whenever it isn't snowing; I'm sure grandma will watch your son for you for 15 minutes or so (I'm very blessed to have my Mom very near as well so she can help me), and get moving! The fresh air, even if it's cold, has really invigorated me. The other things I've done are drinking more water (when you are even slightly dehydrated you can feel sluggish), taking a good multivitamin, and making sure I'm eating enough protein. I had no idea how important protein is to having enough energy until I was pregnant, and I learned that pregnant women need at least 80 grams of protein a day, and a regular 120 lb. woman who exercises moderately needs at least 60 grams a day! I found that I wasn't able to really get that much protein through food, so I started eating a good quality protein bar every day, and I've been feeling soooo much better! I can't remember off the top of my head right now what the name of the protein bar is I'm eating, but I've tried them all, and this one is great. E-mail me at ____@____.com if you're looking for a good protein bar that tastes good, and I'll let you know what it is.

K.,

I have found that exercise helps me a lot. Also getting some contact with my peers helps my mood, and getting some alone time. But you might also be dealing with mild depression. You might want to see a doctor to see if you can get some help.

I find it helps to get motivated if I do regularly scheduled outings with other people. Go to the library. Check out your local community center. I live on the East Side of Portland and LOVE the Sellwood community center. I have a 1 year old, and they have an open gym for toddlers on MWF where you can talk with other parents and let your little one run free with other kids.

Try eating a healthy diet of fats, proteins, and carbs. Change the portions of these until you feel satisfied. If after about an hour after eating certain foods you feel depressed, or like you are not full, though you have eaten enough to be full, continue to change the amounts and portions of good fats, proteins and carbs.

I realize the difficulty of being a young mother.

I don't know what you were doing, or what your lifestyle was before getting pregnant, but perhaps you may want to consider why God saw it appropriate for you to bear a child at this age.

Another things is to do it regardless of how you feel, or what you really want to do. You wake up in the morning, and make healthy decisions for you and your son. And be thankful for the love and support you have received. Be thankful for the circumstances you are in right now. And take each day at a time, and try to do better the next day.

It is beautiful that you are seeking counsel from other women. May God provide you with godly women who will counsel and exhort you in the love and grace of God.

We all need God. If you don't feel as though you have a purpose of living, Look to your Creator.

All of the advice so far is EXCELLENT! Why don't you get a notepad and write down the key points of each response? Then turn that into a list of things to do. You don't HAVE to do any of them, but some will stand out as 'want tos'. Put those first. Then decide how they will fit in your day.

Set yourself a goal, something YOU want. It doesn't have to be important; make sure it is 'doable' - then do it. Even if it's the only thing you accomplish that day it's fine. Just accomplish ONE thing you set for each day and be PROUD of doing so. Tell your family what and why you are doing. I'm sure they will support you, they have been wonderful so far, right?

If you make that list of things, your schedule for each day in a general way, then try to keep to it. You'll find you get better with time and pretty soon you'll have a written list of accomplishments, which will in itself make you feel better to look at and remind yourself you CAN TOO WIN!! Just tell yourself this is a little obstacle, not a big one, and you don't have to get all the way past it today, but you DO have to put one foot in front of the other. You do that by making yourself do one thing a day. Then another day see if you can do two things. You'll be surprised at how far, how fast this works.

I started with giving myself a pedicure. Sounds silly, but it's so hard to get time to 'do your feet' and those are the things that hold you up all day. So I told myself that since I couldn't accomplish anything worthwhile at least I'd make my feet feel better. Doing it made me feel better. Walking on those feet made me feel better. So just pick one thing, and when it's done, pick another, and next thing you'll be back in school and loving it all. But it's the having a goal, telling yourself you can too win and are too worth it. I think of the hair color commercial. I AM WORTH IT. All of the effort, and one day Jared will look at you and you'll KNOW it was worth all the struggle to help him to grow up without having to be in the shoes you USED TO stand in.

Go make that list now. Then think about what one thing you want to do tomorrow.

K. I know exactly how you feel I think we all get into a rut sometimes where all we want to do is just lay around. I try to get up early and exercise! That really gives me tons more energy and I am not so moody. I also try to have something planned for me to do everyday at least one thing like clean the bathrooms, or write thank you cards and if I don't have anything that needs to be done I try to leave the house and go somewhere else. Like a park or the mall and just walk around and play with my kids :) I hope this helps. It is defintly an adjustment being a mom it gets easier I promise just try to enjoy your little boy he will grow fast!

K.:

You sound depressed to me. I was depressed after having both my children. It was post-partum for both but I started feeling sad and unmotivated when they were one and two also. It is very hard to raise kids. Its even harder I imagine when you are young and it sounds like his bio-Dads not around? I struggle and I'm 34 and married. Raising kids is hard regardless of your age and/or marital status. I think you need to get back to school when you can. I think school would benefit you for many reasons. Exercise will help with your mood too. Take your son for a walk or outside to let him crawl around. You might need to drag yourself outside at first but after a few times you should start feeling the benefits of getting your body moving and the fresh air. Try finding other Moms in your neighborhood and get together for playdates. Its amazing what another Moms friendship can do for your sanity. I wish I could think of something more but hopefully other MaMas will add to this Good luck and remember your not alone in all of this. We all struggle at some point. A.

All of the other moms have said it just great. Be encouraged that you are not alone! I think it's safe to say every mother feels overwhelmed, angry, resentful and sad at times -- and while there is plenty of joy, fulfillment, excitement, wonder and love, love, love with being a mother, the "down times" can make it brutal. Definitely do confide in your folks and your doc about your feelings because they can 100 percent help.

For myself, I find these things help. (I am also a stay-at-home momma who marvels at how cleaning up one area often results in my little lady [19 months] making at least as huge a mess while I'm vacuuming/mopping/scrubbing in the meantime!)

-- Making lots of lists gets me motivated or at least, dreaming of the possibilities (cleaning lists, grocery lists, books to read, online sites to visit, meals to cook, etc.)
-- Our weekly playgroup is wonderful. They exist in most all areas (I live in a remote part of Alaska and ours is run by a child-advocacy group) and put you in touch with moms your age and older who can give you lots of neat ideas for yourself and your little one.
-- My church commitments -- we go Sunday morning and help out with other ministries during the week by preparing snacks or help supervise young people. While one of the benefits is getting out and about (even when it's been "one of those days" and you don't feel like doing anything except hunkering down in the mess that surrounds you!), it's an awesome way to get your "fuel tanks" filled up with encouraging words and learning about folks in Scripture who faced discouragement and often amazing odds just like us.

I really hope these words and the advice of the other mommas help. Please keep us posted, K.!

Hi K.,
Start off your day with some kind of excercise. You will be amazed at how your energy level will go up with even just a 30 minute brisk walk. Add pushing your sweet babyboy Jared in his stoller and you both benefit!
This is really an overwhelming adjustment for you and you need to do something good just for you and believe me this will help you in so many ways.
You will feel so good for having accomplished something and it stays with you all day and it will keep you motivated.
You have to be the one to take the first step in helping your self and this is a great way to start your day.
I also suggest that you try to find a local Mommy support group you could join to meet new friends that have kids for playdates and just plain support.
Good luck K.
Grandma C

This sounds like you might be going into a depression. You need to talk with your parents about this, and see a DR or a Counselor.
Sometimes you just need to get up and take a walk.
Hugz

I would commit at least to doing one walk a day - just to get going....and if you are wanting to eat, eat healthy raw foods - nuts, seeds, fruits, veggies. If you are sitting, read an inspirational book. You may want to take flower remedies - look into Bach Flower Remedies which may help clear this mood you are in. Good luck!

Ensure you are getting enough vitamin's A and B-complex. If you rule out depression, are getting the right amount of sleep(at seventeen you still need a little extra) and have the propper nutrition then move to "fake it till you make it". This is a psycological effect you can use. Basicaly, get up and do things as though you feel good. Get ready for the day, give you parents an unaturally perky good morning. Swing your little boy around until he laughs, ect. Force yourself to smile.
Make sure you have at least 30 min. of time for yourself everyday. Use this time for relaxation and beautification.
And do remember you are not alone! I have problems with depression too and have since I was 15. It's not serious enough for medication so I have to use those teqniques.

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