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Welcome to the Mom & Mind Podcast!

This podcast focuses on the Maternal Mental Health struggles related to becoming pregnant, being pregnant, birth and early parenthood. We talk about all of the stuff that you wish someone would have told you BEFORE you tried to be pregnant or have a baby. Postpartum depression is only part of the story.

The goal of this podcast to put all of this info out in the open. There’s no need to hide these very human experiences…so many people deal with these struggles. So, the podcast provides real life stories of moms, dads and family AND we will talk with experts, leaders and advocates in the field of maternal mental health and maternal health. You deserve to be informed!!!!

For more information and resources, go to www.momandmind.com

Jul 30, 2018

Every woman’s pregnancy experience is different, and each pregnancy brings its unique challenges. Today you’ll hear one woman’s story of her pregnancy, loss, and the obstacles she faced due to pre-eclampsia, which can affect women during pregnancy and in the postpartum period. My guest is gracious enough to share the heartbreaking details of her story, with the hope that those in similar circumstances will know they are not alone.

 

Stacey Porter is president and founder of The Tangerine Owl Project, a nonprofit devoted to offering peer support to families, started in memory of her daughter after a NICU loss in 2012. Stacey has been dedicated to efforts centered around supporting families who have suffered infant loss and traumatic birth since 2013. Stacey is heavily invested in efforts to support maternal mental health as it intertwines so greatly with traumatic birth and bereavement experiences for these families. She works as a contractor with the 2020 Mom Project, leading a volunteer program, social media, and a handful of other projects. She sits on the board of directors for local nonprofit Beyond the Baby Blues, which offers clinical group support to women suffering from perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, and she serves on the bereavement committee for the Mothers’ Milk Bank of the Western Great Lakes. Stacey is a member of the National Perinatal Association and Preemie Parent Alliance, and has collaborated on projects for patient education including online curriculum for staff on psychosocial support for NICU parents. 

 

Show Highlights:

 

  • Stacey was pregnant with her third child in 2012 after two picture-perfect pregnancies with her son and daughter
  • Why this was a completely different pregnancy experience, when swollen ankles at a 24-week appointment prompted her doctor to probe further and discover pre-eclampsia
  • Within a few days, she found herself hospitalized and then transferred to a more equipped hospital
  • The baby began to decline rapidly and her doctor told her to be prepared for delivery
  • A C-section was scheduled and the baby was given a 40% chance of survival
  • What is pre-eclampsia? A pregnancy condition in which maternal blood pressure rises to dangerously high levels, the baby is deprived of oxygen, and the placenta’s health can be affected
  • Pre-eclampsia can occur in pregnancy or postpartum, causing vision problems and seizures, and can decelerate the baby’s heart rate
  • Pre-eclampsia can affect people in different ways; Stacey didn’t have the typical risk factors, which include: the first pregnancy, a pregnancy with a different partner than previous pregnancies, smoking, and advanced maternal age
  • Pre-eclampsia can be mild or severe and can affect women of every race and every age
  • Back to Stacey’s story: the C-section was performed without complication and her daughter was born, weighing 1 lb. 5 oz.
  • The baby was sent to NICU and Stacey was discharged, but camped out at the hospital for the next 27 days
  • Stacey was on blood pressure medication for two months postpartum, but some women have to stay on them much longer
  • How Stacey was able to pump and provide breast milk for her baby
  • One weekend, Stacey went home for a quick visit and then returned to the hospital
  • Her baby became lethargic and the doctor discovered an infection from hospital-acquired bacteria
  • The baby became septic and they tried antibiotics for the aggressive Pseudomonas infection that they couldn’t get control of
  • After three days of sickness, they spent the last moments with her and held her as she passed away
  • Stacey realized that there is not a lot of peer support for people going through infant loss
  • The Facebook connection that became Stacey’s lifeline, because even though friends and family tried to help, they just couldn’t understand like someone who had been through the same experience
  • How people feel helpless and like they want to help but don’t know what to do or say
  • How the Tangerine Owl Project was inspired through the experience with her daughter, Delilah
  • How Stacey has grown and learned through her grief, starting the organization on the anniversary of her daughter’s death
  • How anxiety, depression, and panic attacks started a couple of years later, even though she was doing everything she could to deal with her feelings
  • How Stacey has become an advocate for maternal mental health

 

Resources:

 

www.tangerineowl.org

 

Find Stacey on Facebook: @Tangerine Owl Project or Stacey Dunlap Porter