Columns

The One Where I Almost Ruined a Vacation

Doctors often overlook female problems caused by hemophilia. I have many examples of this concept, but few are as upsetting as when I almost ruined a family vacation in 1990. Precancerous cells had invaded my cervix and needed removal. The procedure terrified me! I gathered several opinions, eventually landing…

What Pain Means to Me as a Caregiver

“Pain” is a short, four-letter word, but its meaning is complex for those affected by chronic illness. For example, my youngest son, who lives with severe hemophilia, also known as factor VIII deficiency, once described the feeling of an internal bleed as sharp needles continuously attacking a joint.

PTSD Returns During a Trip to the Dentist

My son, Caeleb, recently had his first appointment with a new dentist following our recent move, which led to our first experience with an old concern: post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Caeleb, 15, has had a fear of needles for many years, and as part of his hemophilia…

My Husband and I Are Walking for Our Health

As I slowly approach the big three-zero (two more years to go!), I can’t help but reflect on the state of my health. Physical symptoms scare me now more than ever, and I want them checked as soon as possible. I’ve been trying to commit to healthier habits as well…

That Time Hemophilia Came for Thanksgiving

Some years ago, when my youngest son, “MacDonald the Younger,” was about 7, he had an internal bleed into his right knee just before Thanksgiving. I was scheduled to lead a “Thanks Living” service that Tuesday, but we quickly realized we would be celebrating the holiday in a hospital…