Ashley Darby has long wanted to start a family, but she's finding out that the first month of motherhood isn't always totally a dream.
The Real Housewives of Potomac mom recently opened up in her Instagram Story about going through her first truly trying time following the birth of her son, Dean Michael Darby, on July 7. “Today I experienced my first bout of postpartum blues,” Ashley said, as reported by Essence. “It started because Dean has a stuffy nose and didn’t sleep last night, like, at all. Nothing longer than maybe a half hour or an hour, and then I felt like I needed to do all these things around the house. I needed to do dishes, I needed to do laundry, straighten up the house, pump milk.”
Ashley also said that her body is still adjusting after delivering a baby. “Physically, I’m not feeling very well,” she shared. “My areas … are still in quite a bit of pain and physically I just don’t feel myself. That’s really what postpartum is about — not only the emotions of the hormones, but physically our bodies are still recovering from delivering a baby so we’re not really at our prime to execute the same tasks.”
Thankfully, Ashley's husband, Michael Darby, who has two adult children from his first marriage, has been by her side to help take care of their son. “Michael really stepped up. I didn’t really have to say anything," she said. "He saw in my face how upset and sad I was, and so he took the baby this morning and let me sleep for a couple of hours. He’s been working from home to help me whenever I need.”
Ashley opens up about supporting her husband during a difficult time in The Real Housewives of Potomac Season 4 After Show, above.
Unfortunately, this week has only gotten more challenging for Ashley. She revealed in her Instagram Story on Wednesday, July 24 that she has been diagnosed with mastitis, inflammation of the breast tissue. "It came because on Sunday night, I was so tired I didn't pump. I just fed the baby and went back to sleep. And I know I'm supposed to pump, and I didn't," Ashley recalled. "So Monday I woke up and I had a horrible headache and my breasts were really hard. But this had happened before, so I decided to try to remedy it myself by pumping and massaging and warm compresses."
But Ashley said she knew something was very wrong when she woke up on Wednesday. "Today I woke up with the worst headache imaginable. My breasts are on fire. My back hurts. And I thought it was weird last night, I had a heating pad on, and I was like, 'Man, my back is so achy, why?' Now I know," she said. "So I went to the doctor today. I had a fever of 101. So they gave me some antibiotics, and I'm taking some Motrin. And Michael has Dean, so I'm pumping and Michael is feeding Dean the bottles for a little bit. But, yeah, I thought I was on top of it, but I was so tired on Sunday. I just, I fed Dean and then I laid him down. Big mistake!"
Ashley said that she has been feeling faint, "very lethargic," and like her head is "splitting in half" as she copes with mastitis. "So ready for this to go away and get back to business as usual," she said.
Even though Ashley's first month of motherhood definitely hasn't been easy, she couldn't be happier to have Baby Darby in her life. "I never thought this day would come. When I learned I was pregnant, I started thinking about when I'd feel the first kicks. Then, when I was feeling the flutters, I wanted to know when I'd finally start to show. After watching the bump grow, my mind went to birthing day (WILL THIS REALLY HAPPEN?!)," Ashley wrote in an Instagram post announcing her son's birth on July 7. "And when the day finally came that this sweet child came into our world, it felt like the sunniest day after a sky filled grey. The most sensational day of our shared life. Mickey and I are savoring every moment with our wonderful son."
Watch a preview of an all-new episode of RHOP Sunday at 8/7c, below.