It ‘s one of those hush-hush situations. Something the medical community alludes to vaguely and is weary of categorizing. Perhaps you’ve heard the buzz about it during rhyme time at the library. Maybe you’ve heard it whispered about in the trenches at the playground, at in your local
busybody’s Mom’s club. Its rumored about, with down cast eyes and hushed tones, the minute a down trodden looking mother walks into the room with ill-fitting sweatpants and a muffin top: Post Traumatic Motherhood Syndrome or PTMT.
WHAT IS PTMS?
PTMS is a very real, and serious condition effecting thousands of woman each year. It can last from 2 weeks post partum, to up to 6 years (or more if your child repeats kindergarten). It’s natural to be frazzled when you’re a mother. It’s natural to be upset when your skinny jeans no longer fit. But if you walking in circle at the local Wal-Mart shopping for a crock pot cookbooks and ingredients for Rachel Ray’s dish du jour, you may have PTMS. If you spend hours trying on “mom jeans” in which the waistband lies unnaturally high, lounging roughly 1/2 inch south of your white cotton braziere, you may have PTMS. If any of these symptoms occur, it might be time to talk with your
local wholesale liquor distributor doctor. You may be suffering from Post Traumatic Motherhood Disorder.
WHO CAN GET PTMS?
PTMS does not discriminate against race or age. You may think “Oh, that will never be me with the smeared coral colored lipstick, lopsided ponytail held together by a supermarket produce rubber band, and gummy bear stuck to the seat of my pants” but it can strike anyone. The condition can be spontaneously triggered by childbirth, adoption, or acquiring a young child thru marriage. In certain areas of the country (areas with high concentrations of playgroups, moms clubs, babysitting co-ops, mostly) it can be contagious and spreads faster than strep throat at a lollipop party.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF PTMS?
A dramatic change in lifestyle that was previously unacceptable in your pre-motherhood life. If you answer YES to 7 or more of the following questions you may be suffering from PTMS:
1. Have you traded in your sports car, uber-cool SUV, convertible, or other hip automobile for the likes of a (gasp) mini-van or bulky unsightly “seats 7″ land hog?
2. Are g-strings and lingerie a thing of the past? Is the fruit of your womb covered by fruit of the loom instead of Victoria Secret or LaPerla? Have you graduated into the sick and depraved land of white granny panties? Do you remember to change them daily? In a sleep deprived stupor do you sometimes even forget to put them on?
3. Are sweatpants and track suits the focal point of your wardrobe? Are they free from boogers, handprints, smears, and other forms of your offspring’s DNA?
4. Are the roots of you hair longer than 3 inches? Do you bear a striking resemblance to a Brittany Spears mug shot? Are you a candidate for the TV show “When Good Dye Jobs Go Bad?” Or worse, has mother hood degraded you to patronizing a $7.99 budget salons like “Supercuts” in order fund your next trip to Disney?
5. Are you completely oblivious to this years hot fashions, yet you are a well versed expert who is keenly aware of which brand of diaper will hold x amount of urine for x amount of time before springing a leak?
6. Have you ever introduced yourself as _________’s mom? Did you have “Mommy business cards” printed up with your name, phone number, twitter handle, facebook name and the names and ages of your children ? (IF YES SKIP NEXT QUESTIONS AND GET HELP NOW! )
7. Have you had a sexual fantasy involving an “Imagination Mover“? (“Yeah baby, I got a problem you can fix right HERE, ((pointing to crotch, heavy panting)) so put on your wabble-goggles and dive in, Mo fo!” )
7. Is your # 1 source of info regarding current events and world news derived from Radio Disney?
8. Have you found yourself following the story line and laughing out loud at an episode of royal preteen jackassery on “The Suite Life of Zac and Cody?”
9. Are you so bored you often find yourself wondering why DJ Lance Rock appears to have no penis while sporting his tight orange spandex? Seriously, white boys everywhere should be thanking him for debunking the myth that Black men have large you-know-whats. C’mon Lance, give Mommy a little sumptin sumptin to look at and quit tucking and taping!
10. Can you sing at least one of the following:
a. Theme to Micky Mouse Clubhouse
b. The Potty Dance
c. The Rubber-Ducky song?
11. Do you have violent, raging thoughts when “The Fresh Beat Band” comes on? When they are singing, do the words ”Stuff a cork in it, F—ker!!!!s” come flying out of your mouth before you realize your kids are in the room ?
12. Do you have the sudden urge to double up on birth control or does the sight of your husbands (fertile) penis make you convulse with fear?
13. Is your nail polish chipped? Are your cuticle ragged? Is Destin under your fingernails your idea of a french manicure?
14. Do you intentionally wear your bangs long to hide the slovenly caterpillars above your eyes that were once neatly arched eyebrows ?
15. Have the words “poop” pee-pee” and “fart” become more prevalent in your vocabulary than worlds like “5 star dining” ”high-profile client” and “stockholders meeting”?
16. When planning vacation, are you less concerned with things like a swim up bar and on premise full service spa, and more concerned with the availability/cleanliness of the kiddie pool and proximity to a theme park?
17. For working moms, when sitting in a meeting regarding the company’s annual report, is all you hear “blah blah blah” and instead you are silently praying you remembered to plug-in the crock pot?
18. Quick: Recite the number for the nearest pizza delivery. GO! Give yourself another point for each additional pizza delivery phone number you know by heart.
19. Can you sleep anywhere? And by anywhere I mean in a twin bed with a child’s toe stuck up your nostril?
20. Are the majority of your shoes less than 3 inches in height? Be honest, how many are slip on? Be double honest, how many come from Payless?
21. Have you ever locked yourself in the bathroom to eat just so you didn’t have 5 or more grubby little fat fingers digging in and demanding you share? Have you ever told a child that the canoli you were eating tasted like broccoli and that they would not like it?
22. When macaroni and cheese lands in your hair, do you retreat to shower immediately, or just brush it out, hoping no one notices?
23. Look at a photo of yourself before childbirth. Now look in the mirror. Are you currently looking like a sherrif’s scared straight program “after” shot of a meth addict?
WHAT CAN I DO ABOUT PTMS?
PTMS is treatable, although most women do not see noticeable improvement until their youngest child is around 2. The vast majority will see a 75 percent recovery by the time said child steps onto the school bus for kindergarten. Most women never fully recover from PTMS. In the meantime, professionals have come up with several suggestions for improvement.
1. Install ”skinny mirrors” in your house and invest in a pair of ”spanx”. If you still do not see marked improvements, you will need to join a gym. Just make sure its one with lots of retirees and horny old geezers, as opposed to one with “Real Housewives of OC” look-a-likes. The geezers, suffering from impaired eyesight will make you feel hot, and the retires might offer to babysit your kids once in a while.
2. A glass of red wine (or two or three, or four) and some dark chocolate (1/2 bag of dark Lindor truffles is the recommended dosage) are miracle mood enhancers and are chock filled with anti-oxidants and heart benefits. (Or at least I think that is what it said in the “Woman’s World” magazine I was trying to read while holed up in my closet hiding from my 4 year old)
3. Bag radio Disney and find a good retro rock station. Teach your children the words to Kiss, Whitesnake and Tesla, which will help you re-live your glory years, when you were cool, wore miniskirts with 6 inch heals, and dated bassists with long flowing hair who wrote songs for you and called you Goddess.
4. Carry a copy of the New York Times Sunday Magazine in your purse. Take it out and hold it in front of you like you are reading it, while sitting on a bench at the park. This serves 2 purposes: 1. You will appear to be a “in the know” hipster, cultured and well-informed (if you believe the Times sh*tty commercials, that is). and 2. While shielding your face with said hip propaganda filled newsrag, you can take a much needed nap.
5. Schedule your husbands vasectomy. If he protests, tell your goodie bag is being held ransom until he gets one. If that doesnt work, tell him to shut the f*ck up, turn his head and cough, and it will be over before he can say “scapula to the ball-sack”
6. Surrender. Dont sweat the small stuff like breast milk dripping down your favorite t-shirt while you wait in line to get your laptop fixed at the G-d forsaken Apple Store where there is ALWAYS a line and the teenage employees, – excuses me, – “geniuses”- stare at your saggy, wet teets like you are a lactating freak. Dont worry about publicly and getting caught at the parent teacher conference in mismatched socks by the town snob/gossip. Dont sweat the small stuff! You laid your head down on your bosses desk and fell asleep during your performance review at work? HA! Who cares? Laugh along the first time your toddler calls out to another child at playgroup a “Get out of my way, dickhead”, which, by the way, you are certain she heard from her older brother! Stick temporary fairy tattoos on your c-section pouch and use glitter sticks in your overgrown pubic region to spice up your love life! Whip up the best Gosh darned tootin Rachel Ray 30 minute meals they’ve seen this side of the potluck table!
Enjoy them while they are little!
This is your LIFE, live it, afterall (drumroll please…) IT GOES SO FAST!
And finally, the most import action you can take against PTMS:
6. Make sure Hubs keeps that vasectomy appointment.
Thanks for reading!
On a side note, for anyone who is humorless, or with a bug up their rear, this is in NO WAY meant to mock or make fun at Postpartum Depression, which is a serious medical condition requiring a doctors care.