A connected care team that collaborates for the best outcome for the family

When it takes longer than expected to start your family, you can't wait to start expecting.

Delays and complications can be frustrating and sometimes heartbreaking, but a team of doctors working with you and pulling for you can make all the difference. For two patients, Marlina and Emily, the journey began with ARC.

Meet Marlina

every milestone is one more victory - pregnancy

As soon as they married, Marlina and Tim wanted children. Once they started their journey toward becoming a bigger family, the road was a little longer than they thought it'd be. They turned to Dr. Maya B. Bledsoe, Endocrinology and Reproductive Medicine at ARC Seton Northwest, and found that she was not only an expert in her field, but she would also become their cheerleader.

Marlina miscarried during her first pregnancy at nine weeks and remembers how supportive and reassuring Dr. Bledsoe was. "You don't have to put on a show," Marlina remembers Dr. Bledsoe saying. "If you want to cry, I'll cry with you."

"Sometimes my job is not to tell them what to do, but to be a shoulder," said Dr. Bledsoe.

Reassurance during high-risk pregnancies

When Marlina became pregnant with Ben, born in 2018, she was put on bedrest. Dr. Robert J. Cosentino, Obstetrics/Gynecology at ARC Far West, happened to be on call when Marlina felt dizzy during that pregnancy. Dr. Cosentino, who actually delivered Marlina when she was a baby, assured the couple that Marlina and the baby were okay and updated with Marlina's regular ARC doctors. "ARC doctors kept making us feel reassured and optimistic," said Tim.

"You look at the milestones as the pregnancy progresses and you want to report the positive things … each milestone is one more victory," said Dr. Cosentino.

A growing family

Mother eating with her toddler

On March 13, 2020, Marlina and Tim delivered Ben's baby brother, Jacob, and couldn't be happier. They are grateful for their active, growing family and the care they continue to receive from their team at ARC. Dr. Nancy E. Owens, Pediatrics at ARC Round Rock, collaborates and communicates with the other ARC doctors and looks forward to helping their newest member of the family grow.

"We have our family. We couldn't ask for anything more," said Marlina.

Meet Emily

well child check up with doctor

Emily and her husband Efrain had been ARC patients for many years when they sought help from Dr. Bledsoe to grow their family.

Support for the journey

happy family eating dinner together

"She was on this journey with us and she was going to see it through," said Emily. "On our seventh round, it was four in the morning and I emailed Dr. Bledsoe to tell her we got a positive."

Just as Marlina and Tim discovered, Emily and Efrain learned the journey only begins once you get pregnant. "Eventually you ‘graduate' from fertility treatments," said Emily, but she found that the support doesn't end there. Emily remembers Dr. Bledsoe calling to congratulate them in 2013 when Charlie was born.

Through it all, Emily's doctors stayed in constant contact with each other and the couple. "They were all on our team, trying to make things work out for us," said Efrain.

A family of doctors

Daughter Analise was born in 2017, also with the help of Dr. Bledsoe. Both children now see Dr. Sharon C. Leong, Pediatrics at ARC Quarry Lake.

It truly feels like a family, said Emily, "She knows my kids. It feels like she's parenting right along with us."

Convenience and access through MyChart and by phone

pediatrician doctor Leong checking toddler's heart beat

Both Marlina and Emily relied on MyChart during their pregnancies for answers to late-night questions and reassurance on unusual or unexpected symptoms. Marlina remembers always having an answer before she went to bed. Emily loved the convenience of having her test results at her fingertips.

Now that they are parents of active children, both Marlina and Emily like being able to talk to someone by phone for any question and to make appointments online.

The common thread is a connected care team that continues to communicate and collaborate for the best outcome for the family.

Your team for the journey

mother holding toddler during telemedicine call

For Marlina and Tim and Emily and Efrain, ARC helped to grow their family and became their care team that will continue to support them on their lifelong journey.

At ARC, a range of doctors and specialties can grow with the needs of your family from diaper rash to achy joints and all the bumps and bruises in between. Building strong families means working together with our patients and other doctors to make sure care is coordinated and connected.

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