Thank you for being here!
If you're here, you know that preeclampsia - and HELLP- have been a scary part of both of my pregnancies. My son's birth four years ago ended in severe HELLP, which sent me to the ICU for almost a week post-birth. Despite all of the precautions and planning my (amazing) OB helped me manage while I was pregnant with my daughter, her birth still resulted in post-partum preeclampsia, resulting in another four day hospital stay. In my immediate circle, at least three of my friends who have given birth in the last year have also experienced preeclampsia.
This is a disease that disproportionately affects and kills women of color. This is a disease that stays with you long after the initial seizure risks have passed and you've weaned off of blood pressure medications and weekly doctor visits, contributing to significantly increased risk for heart disease, strokes, and dementia.
My family was incredibly lucky: not only did Emme, Theodore, and I all survive, today we are healthy, even amidst a global pandemic. Lots of women - lots of babies, and their families - will not be so lucky.