About

Welcome to my little corner of blogworld. I started this blog in 2009, and like most of my relationships the intensity and waxeof our interactions has waxed and waned, but unlike most of my relationships we are still together 😉

In 2009 I was mostly writing about becoming a Scientist (my dsicliplines are child development, behavioral genetics, and nutritional epidemiology) and moving to America. Then, for the first time ever, in my 28th year of life, I became a fitness enthusiast and started to also write about eschewing carbs, completing (very) heavy lifting and training for half marathons and tough mudders.

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In 2012 I fell pregnant with my little boy and while I kept my job going, my blog reflected the swapping of training for diapers, bottles and endless readings of ‘I Want my Hat Back’.

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In 2014 I moved all my work writings over to a separate spot to help keep my professional image and personal life separate. And now, I am waiting to see what form this blog will take. I no longer feel like a deer in headlights when it comes to being a Mum, but equally, my time and enthusiasm for intense training has waned. I can’t travel as much, and so I epxect this blog will just be about life… the life of your average 32-year old ex-pat Scientist, adjusting to life as a Mom in Texas (of all places) with her fairly new, redneck husband.

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2 thoughts on “About

  1. Anna Bican

    Hi. I’m an first time expectant mom just diagnosed with what they assume is type 1 VWD (and type O blood.) My story is much like yours, 10 years of birth control makes my symptoms. I work “around” geneticists, but am not one myself – I am a research coordinator. It’s hard to find data and cases on VWD births! What’s up with that?! As a “newly diagnosed, I made it this far in life patient,” it’s hard for me to trust the birth plan these new doctors -whom I don’t yet trust – are putting together. For instance my MFM specialist said literally 4 things to me about VWD in pregnancy, yet proceeded to write a 5 page note in my chat of things he did NOT say to me. Advice?

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  2. Me Post author

    Hey Anna, I work with a lot of research coordinators – they are the ones who save my skin time and time again 😊
    There is so little info on VWD at all!! And I have access to all the medical literature. With the preamble that I am NOT a medical doctor, here is my advice:

    1. Find an OB you TRUST. Someone you trust to take your fears seriously, be patient explaining things a million times, and so is someone you feel comfortable sharing your worries with.

    2. Find an OB who is happy working as part of a team. I had to coordinate between the anesthesiologist, the hematologist and my OB. For some reason my OB did not want to work with my hematologist and the process was not as smooth as it could be, and the drugs etc managed a little sun optimally (that said, I had a super and a healthy and a drama free second birth and I would not change my OB for the world).

    3. Speak up and advocate for yourself. This was my biggest mistake: I didn’t want to “make a fuss” or “challenge he doctors”. So my hematologist asked for tests about 2 weeks before my due date… he ordered them from my OB but somehow the lines of communication broke down and they were not conducted. On the 38th week, I was too scared to say “hey, shouldn’t you be running more tests”, but I wish I had. Be a pain! Make noise! Be the squeaky wheel.

    4. On a practical level, this is the course of action I took:
    -In the second trimester go and speak with an anesthesiologist. They are the ones who will ultimately decide if you can have an epidural and will sign off on it. Even if you don’t want an epidural there might be a medical need, and it is good to be set up for this possibility in case of an emergency, otherwise you might have to have a general (which is ok, but you might miss some time your baby if you worry about that).
    Then also go and see a hematologist. He should measure you VW levels in the second trimester and before birth to make sure they are high enough. Mine were actually high enough to give birth without an infusion of a clotting agent (but my OB didn’t know his as I didn’t make a fuss about the tests, so I got it anyway).
    Get your hematologist to check your levels again as close to birth as you dare
    Speak to your OB about making sure blood is in stock, and making sure the lab is ready to do clotting tests when you go in.
    You can actually have your own blood stored at my hospital and that can be used in an an emergency. I didn’t find out about this option in time, but it is appealing.
    Then that is about it! For me, they said there was no real advantage to a C-section vs a vaginal birth. The C-section gives more control to the doctor, but I think carries a slightly higher bleeding risk.
    Don’t wait to go into hospital when you go into labor! I did (I went to sleep and woke up in transition) and my kiddo was born within an hour or so of getting to hospital. Better to be in there and monitored than risk a home birth when you have a clotting disorder.

    My only other advice is to remember this:
    -My first birth, when we discovered the VWD through the hemorrhaging, was about as bad as it can get without losing either the Mum or child. BUT both me and my son emerged healthy and have no lasting effects. My second birth was an absolute dream! I did have to have IV clotting factors but I could still move around, go on the ball, get in the tub, and walk the halls. So it didn’t hinder me. There was no bleeding, my uterus shrunk quickly and the clotting factors saved me lots of the nasty after birth bleeding all my friends had! So I ended up having it easy 😊 You might too!

    I know how scary it is though – if you want to email me for support and / or chat, please do.

    And good luck!

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