First-time mothers are often told that they’re about to embark on a journey of a lifetime…and that giving birth is one of the most joyful experiences they’ll ever know. But these sunny expectations don’t often square with the very real challenges of the 4th trimester—especially for the 15-20% of new mothers who battle postpartum anxiety or depression.

This is what new mom Darcie Burroughs found out when she brought home her son Beau. The first six weeks of her baby's life were marked by severe postpartum anxiety.

“It was the most debilitating, intense feeling I’ve ever experienced in my life. No joke, probably the worst experience of my life during what is dubbed as the best experience of your life,” she shared in an Instagram post. “Nothing prepared me for this. All the research I did, newborn courses, books, podcasts, doctors’ visits, nothing.”

Darcie’s husband works in construction, so she felt like she was better equipped to weather the night shift. “You can fall asleep at a desk, but not on an excavator,” she reasoned. But lack of sleep magnified the “hormonal rollercoaster” of Darcie’s anxiety.

It wasn’t tenable. So, as she waited for her anti-anxiety medications to kick in, Darcie knew she had to find a way to get more sleep.

“I was at my wit’s end. Sleepless night after sleepless night, my anxiety kept getting stronger and stronger. It was like an out-of-body experience,” she remembers.

A friend had told Darcie about a “magical bassinet” called SNOO, but Darcie had initially it ruled out because of its price tag. Then, late one night, in the throes of sleep deprivation, she took another look. “That’s when I realized there was a rental program. I thought that was so smart,” she says. She quickly placed her order. 

After less than two weeks in SNOO, Beau was sleeping 3- to 4-hour stretches. “It was so nice not to have to get up and hold the baby and shush him and rock him while recovering from a c-section,” Darcie says. “With my exhaustion and anxiety, it was something else I could rely on to take the burden off of me and my husband when I was in such a vulnerable state.” 

Not only did SNOO help alleviate Darcie’s sleep-deprivation, but it also gave her confidence. Wondering if Beau was sleeping well had been another anxiety trigger, but now she had the reassurance that he was okay.

“It gave me confidence again. It allowed me to track his sleep so I could see there’s nothing wrong with him,” she says. “I honestly attribute SNOO to my full sleep recovery.”

Darcie says she’s still processing her postpartum anxiety, but thanks to SNOO—as well as additional professional treatment—she’s feeling much better these days.

“It taught me how to find relief and calm during the most stressful time in my life,” Darcie says. “It was an absolute miracle and a gift. SNOO is like Beau's third parent. We actually call him Uncle SNOO.”

If you are suffering from postpartum depression or anxiety, please know that you are not alone—and that help is within reach, even if you’re stuck at home. Here are a few mental health resources for new moms that you can access virtually.  

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