To begin with, I’ve had epilepsy since 2009, when I had a grand mal seizure. Thankfully, it is well controlled and I have not had very many episodes since then. But what brought me to Tepeyac is directly related to my having epilepsy. Prior to getting married, I went in for my normal OBGYN yearly visit, and to do all the necessary tests prior to getting married. When discussing birth control, I mentioned that my fiance and I are Catholic and planned on doing natural family planning. The doctor was incredulous and asked why I wasn’t on oral contraceptives. In addition to stating that my epilepsy medication made it less ‘successful’ and also that I was Catholic and didn’t want to take contraceptives, the doctor proceeded to to tell me how incredibly irresponsible I was to even consider the possibility of getting pregnant while having Epilepsy.He told me that having a child was perhaps one of the most selfish things I could consider, since many of the medications can have detrimental effects on the fetus, and that it could mean putting my own health at risk. I had never had a doctor treat me in such a way – even my own neurologist was supportive of me eventually having a family.
I reached out to my friends for support as I knew that I needed a doctor who understood why my husband and I wanted to follow the Catholic church teachings on family planning, even though I had a serious medical issue. I also needed a doctor who would be willing to work with us should we be blessed with a family to help me have a safe, and healthy one. One friend referred me to Dr. Cvetkovitch at Tepeyac, saying that she was really good at helping women who have medical conditions maintain a healthy approach to all around health, in order that when the time is right to be blessed with a family I was as healthy as I could be.
Fast forward about five years later and my husband and I just welcomed our first child, Isabel Grace, to this world with the help of Dr. Periera. Throughout my pregnancy, while certainly aware of the extra risks involved with being epileptic and pregnant, all the Tepeyac doctors worked with me (as well as my neurologist) and my husband to ensure as safe, healthy and as natural a pregnancy and birth as possible. I felt that being pregnant was no longer something negative to be “controlled” (as my other doctor had me believe), but rather a precious gift to be welcomed with the right amount of support and caution. Tepeyac helped me and us when we needed it most and believed in us, and the power of God, to fulfill His work here on earth – and to support my husband and I in our vocation as partners, and now parents open to new life.
I recommend Tepeyac whenever I can, even to friends who are not Catholic, as I really believe they serve a powerful purpose in promoting a pro-life, and incredibly pro-woman practice.