HER Foundation Co-founder, Kimber MacGibbon, wrote a guest post for Mommy Labor Nurse.
Liesel Teen is a prominent blogger and Instagram influencer, but more than that, she’s a mommy and a labor and delivery nurse. Using her medical expertise and first hand experience as a mother, Teen strives to answer many of the common questions mothers have regarding pregnancy and birth. She graciously teamed up with the HER Foundation and used her platform to help spread awareness about Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG), Kimber’s own experience with HG, and the subsequent founding of the HER.
It’s a story that many mothers who have had HG can relate to. Nausea and vomiting of pregnancy that grows out of control. “Is this morning sickness?” a mother may wonder, as she finds herself not able to eat, drink, or do her normal daily tasks.
In Kimber’s case, an ER doctor recognized her condition due to the fact that his wife had HG. However, this was not before her midwife had attributed Kimber’s sickness to a psychological cause. Telling her that it was her body’s way of symbolically rejecting the pregnancy.
When all was said and done, Kimber lost 15% of her pre-pregnancy body weight, dropped out of graduate school, and had a 30 hour labor riddled with complications. Her baby was constantly ill and was extremely sensitive to sensory stimulationAbout HG.
Kimber looked at all she and her baby had been through and knew there had to be a better way. She knew that with earlier and more aggressive intervention, her body would have fared better. She did not want other mothers to experience what she did, so the first Hyperemesis.org website was born in September 2000.
A man named Jeremy King found Kimber’s website when his wife was severely ill from HG, and the information there saved Ann Marie‘s life. The Kings then joined with Kimber and the HER Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit charity, was founded in 2003.
Today, HG still drastically changes the life trajectory of the woman who experiences it. But Kimber’s dream, and the HER Foundation’s goal, is that one day HG will no longer increase the risk of pregnancy loss, PMADs, PTSD, financial struggle, and psychosocial issues. One day, Hyperemesis Gravidarum will be history.
HG is hyperemesis gravidarum: a potentially life-threatening pregnancy disease that may cause malnutrition, dehydration, and debility due to severe nausea and vomiting, and may cause long-term health issues for mom and baby.