Created By
Nisreen H.


  • Post Partum Depression
  • Intergenerational Trauma
  • 8 photographic stories

Reclaiming Myself

When I learnt I was pregnant, my first thought was not the happiness at the news but how I would deal with postpartum depression (PPD). It was my fifth pregnancy; my third child, if all went well. This was my second time with PPD and it was definitely harder than my first, even though I was aware this time around. I’m thought of as a strong person, so friends and family (even those who care and are concerned) never thought to check-in because they’ve always thought that I balance it all. It pulled the rug from right under my feet. When I walked into the black hole; there was no reasoning, no logic and certainly no light. If you asked me who I was and what i had done in my life, at that time, I would have told you I was a failure and I had wasted away my time. Unfortunately, I had also just moved back to Toronto (from Austin, TX) and so the change of people and environment made it only worse. You would think like any other illness, people would come by to see you, offer to help – but in the South East Asian community, there’s a lot of shaming around mental health. I don’t quite understand it, to be honest. I only know that I want to somehow change that mindset.
I am a mom, a visual storyteller, an entrepreneur, a traveler, a science nerd, a creative, a book junkie, a kindness snob, a yoga teacher, a hiker, a rower, a daughter, a wife, a sister, a friend, a human. I’m a life enthusiast. I’ve lived in three continents and I’m blessed to have travelled across more. But when I lived with PPD, I felt like I was nothing.
These images were a part of a project I worked on when I took the Storytelling Course with Danielle at the Photographers Without Borders. They are photos of me coupled with affirmations to remind me that I’m enough, just as I am, especially on dark days.
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