In 2019, Scott and Nicole made the leap to grow their family by one more. They already had a beautiful daughter, and thought that another baby would be completing their family.
Nicole has cystic fibrosis, a congenital condition that provides challenges in her life. The family saved to go through IVF, and on August 30th, they found out that they were pregnant at last, and by a miracle, they were having identical twin girls.
Nicole’s pregnancy progressed easily, but a few hurdles presented themselves.
After a scare with a potential spina bifida diagnosis (ruled out), Baby A had signs of a cleft lip or palate and may require surgery after birth to correct this.
On December 29th, 2019, the family went back to the doctor for another checkup, and it was suspected that the girls had developed Twin Anemia Polycythemia Sequence. This was confirmed to be stage 3 TAPS after a visit to Yale, and the family underwent laser surgery at 23 weeks.
24 hours after surgery, there were 2 heartbeats, and also at 5 days later. The surgery was tentatively a success, although they did see the fluid building in Autumn’s stomach. At 7 days after surgery, her mom felt Leighton move for the first time. Unfortunately, at an appointment on the same day, it was confirmed that Autumn had passed from hydrops.
Autumn Lee Woodcock passed on January 16th, 2020. She stayed by her sister Leighton’s side until they were both delivered on April 8th.
Autumn was born first and was 10 inches long, and 1 lb. Leighton arrived next at 3lb 5oz, and measuring 15 inches. She was so tiny and not breathing. Her family truly believes Autumn brought her back to them that day and was there watching over her sister keeping her safe. After resuscitation, Leighton began to breathe on her own and her father was able to go see her before they sent her right up to the NICU.
The TAPS Support Foundation is honored by the wishes of Autumn’s family to create this legacy fund in her name.
Her family is passionate about continuing TAPS research and sharing Autumn’s story in the hope that it inspires others to help continue the research through donating to her legacy. They hope that continuing research will save lives, and raise awareness of this rare disease. Autumn’s Legacy will keep her memory alive, and create a meaningful, and active campaign to honor a brave and special family.
We are honored to know that your story will be the face of TAPS Research. Your inspirational story will always be shared and will help raise money to fund research for TAPS, in hope of saving many babies in the future and saving other families of the heartache we will feel always. We love you always baby girl. Till we see you againNicole Schiavone – Autumn and Leighton’s mom
Awareness For Autumn.
During April 2021, the TAPS Support Foundation will run a special campaign “Awareness 4 Autumn”, in the hope of boosting funds for their latest project. “Unravelling the mysteries of hypoxia and hypoglycemia in donors” is a research project that will help us understand more about the impact of low blood sugar and oxygen levels has on donor twins at birth, and provide insight into the best treatment options.
On April 10th, the family will finally gather to remember Autumn, and say their goodbyes. However, through Autumn’s Legacy, her memory will live on through her beautiful sister Leighton, and the legacy she will leave on TAPS research.
TAPS is Real, and every family it touches leaves an impact. We are grateful to Autumn’s family for their support, and vow to honor her memory.
During April 2021, 100% of donations made to the TAPS Support Foundation will be placed towards our quest to fund this research project.
We will be using the hashtags #Awareness4Autumn and #AutumnsLegacy alongside #tapsisreal, and sharing more of Autumn’s story over this time.
Donations can be made through the link below, or via PayPal. Both of these options are safe and secure. The TAPS Support Foundation is a registered not-for-profit organization based in the Netherlands.
We passionately support research into TAPS, and raise funds for continuing research. We also provide resources for families affected by TAPS, in the hope of helping them understand their diagnosis and advocate for the appropriate care, before and after birth.
Our firm belief is transparency on how we spend your donations, which is why we are volunteers. We don’t pay board members or directors, in order to keep our operational costs and overheads low, and publish our financial report each year.
Images used with permission of the family and may not be reproduced without their consent.