By Sonji Wilkes
A year ago this week, “Infusing Love: A Mom’s View” was born. Like any newborn’s first year, time has absolutely flown by. The wonderful thing about breathing life into something is the relationships and lessons you gain during the journey — “Infusing Love” has certainly taught me a few things along the way. I’ve relived personal memories about what mothering a child with hemophilia has brought to my life, like how I’ve earned my Mommy Medical Degree, How To Keep Calm and Use Frozen Hashbrowns, and sometimes how You’ve Gotta Fight for Your Right to Party, but more importantly, I’ve learned so much from the array of mother’s voices shared in the blog each week. I’ve seen myself in their stories:
- When Maryann shared stories of Max growing into a independent young man and how she’s finding her own place in the world again I can see my future
- When Emily shared her frustrations with parents who don’t supervise their children on the playground and she’s accused of being a helicopter parent, I see those days of yesteryear when my own son was little and remember feeling much the same as Emily
- When Kimberly shared about an emergency room visit and the way she and Ben found humor to be the best coping mechanism, I was reminded of some of our own past ER adventures
- When Cazandra recounted the anxiety she felt when her son battled another bleed in the hospital, I finally was able to see that I have that same anxiety and I’ve been unwilling to admit
- When Jen posed the question how am I getting “me” time it was a gentle reminder that I needed to take care of myself too – and it was a much easier pill to swallow coming from a fellow hemo mom than it was to hear from anyone else
Those stories of others (and the many more they shared) have helped my family and have been a source of comfort and support. And that has been the goal of “Infusing Love” from its inception. As the blog first stated a year ago:
With that in mind, HFA is launching a blog dedicated to all things mom! In this safe spot, moms of a child with a bleeding disorder will be able to read stories and draw inspiration from like-minded (and similarly crazed) moms like themselves.
In recent years, moms of a child with a bleeding disorder have begun turning to online sources of friendship and camaraderie. Moms are looking for a quick place to share and see reflections of themselves – and online friendships have blossomed! HFA hopes that this blog will be an honest look into the lives of moms and families with bleeding disorders. By sharing these insights, we can educate one another within our own bleeding community and teach our friends and family outside of the bleeding world that it’s not all bruises and bleeds.
I’ve heard from many mothers in our bleeding community that they look forward to Wednesday each week to see what pearls of wisdom will come in that week’s blog. The feedback from you, our community, has confirmed that we have reason to celebrate this one year anniversary:
“Amazing. Thank you for sharing that with me. Tears in my eyes and smile on my face”
“The blog was actually what I needed”
“I am fairly new to hemophilia, my son is 14 months old with Severe hemophilia A. The stories that are posted help me prepare for what is to come”
The blog is connecting mothers through stories. The details may not be the same from one family to the next, but the experiences are similar enough for moms to know that they are not alone in raising a child with a bleeding disorder and helps to empower moms. The blog helps moms know that we can get through the bumps, bruises and bleeds together.
Here at HFA, we thank our volunteer bloggers for sharing themselves and their families’ stories – you are making a difference in helping families live and thrive in the face of a bleeding disorder. You give a voice to what so many of us feel. By sharing glimpses into your lives we see ourselves and know that we are not alone. In 2013, “Infusing Love” reached over 230,000 people on Facebook — that’s an amazing accomplishment for something that is moving from infancy into toddlerhood.
Just like any amazing toddler, “Infusing Love” is jumping headfirst into our second year with spunk, curiosity, and determination. We thank our readers for your support and look forward to infusing a little more love into your day.
*Note: “Infusing Love: A Mom’s View,” is a blog collection of personal opinions and a representation of individuals experiences. While extensive efforts are made to ensure accuracy of the content, the blog entries do not represent HFA or its Board of Directors. The blog is also not intended to be construed as medical advice or the official opinion/position of HFA, its staff, or its Board of Directors. Readers are strongly encouraged to discuss their own medical treatment with their healthcare providers.