08:08AM, Sunday 11 August 2013
A determined Maidenhead mum who fought her way back from post-natal depression is planning a fundraising walk to help other sufferers.
Gemma Stephenson suffered months of despair after her daughter Molly, now two, was born.
The 33-year-old, from Thurlby Way, said: "The anxiety was the worst. Molly was born with feeding problems and they feared at first she might have meningitis.
"After that I developed this terrible anxiety and severe insomnia. For six weeks I could not sleep at all. My arms and legs felt like they were burning, I paced up and down endlessly.
"In the end I had to spend 10 weeks with Molly in a 'mother and baby' unit at Winchester."
The fear that something might happen to Molly persisted even after Gemma left hospital.
She says the support of her husband Ben, friends at St Mary's Church and family helped her get through it.
She also has nothing but praise for the support provided by the Royal Borough's community mental health team. In the end, a team of four dedicated psychiatrists helped her get to the root of her problem.
Now Molly is a thriving two-year-old and Gemma is back at her job with a housing association and on the fundraising committee of PANDAS - the charity run by volunteers who help people or families hit by post-natal anxieties or psychoses.
She is organising a ‘pramathon’, a sponsored walk, with or without prams, on the Long Walk at Windsor gREAT Park..
It is taking place on Sunday, August 18, from 9.30am and will cover the picturesque three-mile route between Windsor Castle and the Copper Horse.
Numbers are limited. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to take part.
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