Birth Trauma Survivor and Maternal Health Advocate

“True rebels hate their own rebellion. They know by experience that it is not a cool and glamorous lifestyle; it takes a courageous fool to say things that have not been said and to do things that have not been done.” Criss Jami, Venus in Arms

Within an hour of hitting the “publish” button I had over eight hundred page views on my website. No turning back. I logged onto my Twitter account to see if there was any activity there. There was a tweet to me from a South African woman. She explained over a series of tweets and private…

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“There was something in her eyes that made me trust her. Maybe it was because they held the same cynicism, the same world-weariness I saw in my own every morning when I looked at myself in the mirror.” Melika Dannese Lux, Corcitura

During our first meeting, Rachael told me that she was going to be my partner on this journey. She would reiterate that statement often during our sessions.  I used to think it was such an odd and corny thing to say. How can you be partners with someone you hardly know?  Plus, in order to…

"Do not wait until the conditions are perfect to begin. Beginning makes the conditions perfect." Alan Cohen

I spent several months promoting my television show, “The Heart of Beauty”. It was a hectic and emotional time. The show received high praise yet continued to be rejected by networks. I persevered for Christine and her family to have a chance to tell their story to the world. I kept going for every person…

“If you are going through hell, keep going.” Winston Churchill

It would have been easier to understand and accept what happened to my body if the doctors had been able to diagnose me with something.  Besides the PTSD diagnosis I needed something concrete about the blood that I could research, obsess over and google- but there was no explanation. The miscarriage was easier to understand than…

"Doctors have told me I have a high pain threshold, but I can only know what I feel. I think I'm good at minimizing the pain and being indifferent to it." Johnny Knoxville

Within thirteen months, I had  two hemorrhages. I was also living life as a happy mom shuffling Miss J back and forth to classes and play dates.  At the same time, my anxiety was at an all time high. I wasn’t depressed, I was afraid of dying. I was afraid that enjoying normal activities like…

“It felt as if she were bleeding – but it wasn't blood that leaked out of her, not something that could be easily transfused. Instead she was losing her dreams.” Kristin Hannah, Firefly Lane

May 2011 I thought I was doing well without therapy. The baby classes, hospital support group and outings with new friends kept me very busy that first year after Miss J was born. They were all Band-Aids on my wound, but I was still having trouble sleeping. I was still replaying the surgery and hemorrhaging,…

“Debriefing-style counseling after a trauma often aggravates a victim's stress-related symptoms, for example, and 4 in 10 bereaved people do better without grief therapy.” Winifred Gallagher

I never found any comfort in talking to my psychiatrist, Dr. Jones–I was only seeing her twice a week because she suggested it. I dreaded every appointment. Instead of feeling like I was making progress, I often left feeling much worse than I did before. During our sessions I saw her eyes constantly dart back…

“Talking to a therapist, I thought, was like taking your clothes off and then taking your skin off, and then having the other person say, "Would you mind opening up your rib cage so that we can start?” Julie Schumacher, Black Box

I arrived about ten minutes early for my first session with Dr. Jones, the postpartum psychiatrist. I sat on a couch in the waiting room of her office, along with two other patients. I sized them up, wondering what their problems were.  One woman looked visibly upset about something, she was on the verge of…

"I've never found therapy to be a sign of weakness; I've found the opposite to be true. The willingness to have a mirror held up to you definitely requires strength." Brooke Shields

The first time I sought therapy was shortly after my grandmother’s death–I was eighteen years old. It felt embarrassing and pathetic talking to a stranger about my feelings, but it was also relieving being able to unload on an objective outsider. I was a little amused by the fact that my experience in therapy was…