Deleted Scenes: The Postpartum Hermit

I am getting closer and closer to publishing my memoir about postpartum depression, but in the meantime, here is a deleted scene that will not be making the final cut. 

“Courtney,” my mom said.

My entire body tensed as I cradled the phone against my ear.

“What.”  Not a question but an accusation.

“Grandma is going back home next week and she would love to see Pippa as much as possible before she leaves so can she come with your dad and sister on Saturday?”

My body tensed even more.

“Fine,” I said, “but that’s it.  We are having too many visitors.  It’s too overwhelming for Pippa. ”

The weekend before, EVERYONE had visited — my dad, mom, sister and grandma — and it had been too much, as if they were sucking up precious oxygen.

When I was pregnant and taking walks (waddles) around the neighborhood, I daydreamed about introducing Pippa to friends and family.  Thanks to my never-ending nausea, I decided to skip the baby shower; but I wanted to have a Sip and See (basically a baby shower after the baby is born).  But now, the thought of hosting three visitors — three healthy visitors who would bring bags of groceries and do the laundry — was overwhelming.  Never mind the fact that we lived in a 1,700 square foot house and could have easily accommodated fifty more.

Postpartum depression was turning me into a hermit but I did not realize I was changing.  I assumed all mothers want to wrap themselves in a cocoon with their newborns and shut out the stampedes of visitors.  I could not see that I was living in a new state of constant anxiety and that the presence of just a few visitors bumped my anxiety to intolerable levels.