Jeannie Mai had a “treacherous” experience with postpartum anxiety.
The 43-year-old star and her husband Jeezy welcomed daughter Monaco into the world in January and although she had prepared extensively for the possibility of suffering from depression after the birth, she wasn’t ready for how “intensely worried” she felt in the weeks after giving birth.
She said: “Honestly, it was treacherous, because nobody told me that there’s postpartum anxiety.
“I was happy being a mom I was excited, but I was intensely worried.
“The day Monaco was born, I freaked out. I shut everything down. We were like, ‘No cameras, no nothing!’ Because I was so afraid of the internet and the people.
“And then, what if someone says something about her that I can’t handle? And I’m not being Jeannie Mai Jenkins, the way I should be, you know, polite the way you know me. Like, what if I go ham on somebody?
“For me, it was staying up awake at night wondering and worrying about the weirdest things. And then, if I’m around a group of people, I would think I was hearing stuff that people were saying about me, but it was my own head manifesting things.”
The ‘Holey Moley’ star felt “nervous” throughout her pregnancy and was very cautious about putting herself in “risky” situations.
She told ‘Entertainment Tonight’: “I honestly can say that the whole time I was pregnant I was nervous because I was like I almost feel like I don’t deserve this beautiful privilege.
“I honestly got a lot of anxiety because I thought, for somebody who said their whole life that they didn’t wanna be a mom and here this gift was being given to me, I felt like, ‘Don’t put yourself in risky situations, like don’t get on a plane or — you are the one to have this taken away from you, because you didn’t appreciate it when you had the choice.’ “
Despite her mental health issues, Jeannie couldn’t be happier to be a mom.
She added: “So now, I am beyond grateful. Because I cannot believe, as every parent can tell you, how much a child changes your life. And I like myself better. I like myself better as a mom.
“I love being a mom. I am so touched with the gift of getting her to open her arms… teaching her to lift her arms and teaching her to register communication with me, it’s everything.
“Teaching her, all of the sudden, to dance,? Like, I dance with her, she dances, and then she smiles. Watching human emotion from a face that just started out like, ‘What are we doing here?’ and then, now, getting her to smile – it’s been amazing.”