#1 – How I Got Here – Raising a Family & Opening a Practice

#1 - How I Got Here - Raising a Family & Opening a Practice

Dr. Brenner and her husband, Kevin Cox, talk about the roots of Amy Brenner MD and Associates. They reflect on the period of time before Amy decided to set out to build her own practice and what pushed them towards that decision. Along with the obstacles & difficulties they were able to conquer together. Listen and learn what helped mold the idea of her new practice – to help people feel better through a whole body approach to health.

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Show transcript:


Intro: Welcome to the HealthiHer podcast your host Dr Amy Brenner is a board-certified ob/gyn with additional certifications in functional and integrative medicine this podcast is meant to help women find reliable relevant information to help them feel better, look better and live better. Here you will hear in-depth information about hormones, sexual medicine, Aesthetics, Cosmetic Gynecology and functional medicine.


Amy: My special guest is my number one fan in business and in life and that’s my husband Kevin Cox so welcome Kevin.

Kevin: Well, thank you. Excited to be your first guest.


A: Yeah I thought it was appropriate to have you and I just wanted to talk today of how I even got started in integrative medicine and I thought you would be the perfect person because you were there from the very beginning.

K: Awesome let’s do it yeah.

A:  So uh for those of you that don’t know, I’ve actually been a board certified OB GYN physician for 20 years and spent the first 11 years of my practice doing traditional Gynecology or OB and Gynecology with a large group here in Cincinnati. Kevin if you could just explain like maybe what life was like for us as a couple and as a family um with a ob gyn taking calls, some from home some from some from being in the hospital

K: Yeah it was, craziness. So like most families we were just starting out. Young kids at home and your schedule for lack of a better term was very demanding and so your call coverage like, lot of traditional Obstetricians was 24 hours spent at the hospital so about every six days you were gone for a day and uh you know there was a lot of uh I guess blessings that it provided for our family but certainly challenges as well just from Logistics. So I had to be at home holding down the fort while you’re gone but then even when you were off call there was usually about a 24-hour recovery period of just you know sleep and uh other things of trying to get your uh your body physically back in shape after probably just going non-stop for 24 hours. So that was our that was our life in the early days if you will.

A: Yeah I mean the good thing about it is uh is we’re relatively young we did that um you know in our 30s uh so basically from 30 to 40 and uh I would say you know in general we were pretty healthy but uh as I look back now uh I really wasn’t as healthy as I thought. Uh kind of a healthy breakfast for me at the time was going up the street and getting a whole wheat bagel with the butter and uh a coffee and I thought that was a a healthy breakfast …

K: Oh exactly let’s put the let’s put the low-fat cream cheese on it and we’re doing well, right? Um and I think we had you know we had energy so maybe we mistook a little bit of you know because we were younger we had a fair amount of energy and you mistake that sometimes for healthiness and that’s not not always the case.

A:Um so when I found myself kind of at my late, late 30s of you know weight wasn’t as easy to keep off like it was up until uh up until that point. Um I felt like I was packing on the pounds despite working out with a trainer and monitoring every morsel that I put into my body. Um you probably remember the days when uh you know intimacy and sexual relations like I wasn’t really that interested because I was tired we had three babies um and just from a health standpoint like I just it really wasn’t that important to me.

K:I think that’s fair, uh but not a lot different from any challenges that uh young families face and you know priority shift and things uh things get out of whack kind of easily and I would argue that it was probably amplified in your case because not a lot of moms are, you know, working 24 hours six days a week without sleep and so that’s that’s a tough thing to recover from on top of just the challenges of of raising raising a young family.

A: Yeah and I know you are in in medi- you’re not in the medical field um but at the time I was you know taking care of myself of how I was taught to take care of my patients and so I was taking birth control pills because we decided that three kids was uh kind of what made our family complete. Certainly having three little babies, somebody was always crying and so I had the home stress the work stress and was taking something to help with mood, sleeping definitely was an issue, even when I what was at home and wasn’t on calls so the combination of those things just led me to a place where you know I was taking some medications and and I just wasn’t that healthy and I don’t know if you remember the the first conference that opened the door of what led me into this practice but um I went to that conference and my mom and my sister actually came with me just as tourists because the conference was located in New York City and I came out of that conference just hearing a little bit about bioidentical hormones and weight loss and it just opened the door for me and uh soon after that I rocked your world and said I’m gonna leave this practice where I’m a a partner in and I’m gonna start my own practice because I learned this aspect of medicine and I can’t do it in the setting that I’m currently doing it. I’m sure you remember that conversation.


K: Oh I remember that conversation I thought you were, I thought I was on an episode of “Punked” or something…like are you joking me like we, we’re finally getting over the hump with these kids young and you know you’re you know from my lens you’re a senior partner now and a big Medical Practice like you’ve climbed the ladder you put in the work and you can kind of see the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel so I’m like surely this is just a phase or something it’ll it it too shall pass is what I was thinking at the time. So I fully remember that conversation though.

A: Yeah and you offered to you know I’ll do more at home, I’ll do the shopping, I’ll do the laundry or we’ll get somebody to help and you know just keep doing what you’re doing it’s okay and and you know that lasted for a little while and then uh I think I finally said you know I just don’t want to practice medicine like this anymore. You know there were days in the office at my old practice where I saw 50, 60, almost 70 patients in a day and I just didn’t want to be the doctor of, you tell me a problem and I write your prescription anymore.

K: Yeah I definitely knew that. I think it had been building in you for a while and we I guess unfortunately uh suffered a life-changing event in the in the the passing of of my mother and I think that the timing of that coupled with the just the the the the burning desire that you had been feeling for a while was enough to say it’s time you know life is too short. I want to make a fundamental change in my personal and professional life and it’s time and so um that was that was kind of the impetus that that that that pushed you over the edge there so I remember that time fully well um so you know took a took a life-changing event to to really move in a different direction and then here we are on your first podcast kind of reflecting on on what got it all started.

A:Yeah 10 years later so you know it was kind of multifactorial of uh you’re right uh the the final straw was uh when your mother passed away and I just realized Life’s too short to be unhappy in a job and work-life balances is really important uh now the first couple years in practice in in this current practice is I I kind of was like oh my goodness what have I gotten into because I was still working a lot of hours uh because there was so much to learn I’m sure you remember those days of uh I would work until five but then come home eat dinner with the kids and then still like work until you know twelve one two in the morning.

K: Oh I fully remember those days and I you know truth be told what I think one of the reasons why uh and I’m again I’m looking at this through the lens that I look at things through maybe a little bit different lens than you look through but I uh it started my own business back in the day and then I was in a role with with my company where I was in charge of bringing on new businesses and starting them from the ground and I just knew all the little things that went into launching a business completely irrespective from all the clinical aspects that you’re referring to but just how daunting it can be to to launch a business from the ground up and so I knew that going in and I was certainly uh just just hesitant because I knew that it was hard to really convey that to you um but hats off to you I think you kind of ultimately powered through all those obstacles and you know you’re willing to do whatever it took early on to to make sure that this Vision that you had became a reality.

A: Yeah and luckily I I did have you to help with the the business aspects of it so I could focus on the the clinical or medical aspects because I had a lot tolearn I was totally Shifting the way I practiced medicine now I still continued uh with traditional Gynecology and uh still doing ablations and we trademarked word MyFlow for no more periods, period. And so that was a huge aspect of my practice but uh I decided that after I kind of helped myself of get off birth control pills and and the other prescriptions I was taking is after I did that and tested my hormones and started taking um some supplements myself to get me to help with sleep and to help with stress and adrenal Health um is I look back I’m like I didn’t even think I was you know quote that messed up I end quote and then after I help myself um and was you know feeling better in my mid-40s than I did at 30 I just realized that you know there’s so many other women that don’t know about these things and I have to do this and um so it was great to just you know feel myself again and not be this person that was you know grumpy and heavier than I wanted to be and just really didn’t have any interest in you know in sex quite honestly um so I’m sure you’re glad that we got past that part.

K: Oh there are zero complaints on my end about that and I for uh for most men that might be uh partaking in the in the podcast I I think that’s definite and again it’s it’s stage of Life a lot of its stage of Life related but uh but it doesn’t have to be that way and I think when you finally learned that and uh you know found some some clinical ways to address that and then it just becomes that proverbial you know Snowball running downhill where you’re you have more energy so now you want to take on more things and when you take on more things you feel better which gives you more energy and just a lot of things then just really came into focus and and you started firing on all cylinders as they say.

A: Yeah so because it wasn’t something that you and I were having problems it was more of a a medical thing of you know uh early on in our marriage we I used oral contraceptives to um prevent pregnancy and then we moved to a permanent non-hormonal option and so you know I you know we did have little kids and I was working but there was all also some medical factors that went into that and so you know once we got rid of the the medical factors that were affecting things uh you know it just added that aspect of our relationship that was missing I think because of you know medical factors mainly.

K: Yeah I agree I agree and so that was certainly a great um way for me to kind of understand clinically where you were going with this Venture because you know I’m first of all I’m a man and I you know I was looking at things through a different lens than you so I truth be told I didn’t quite understand the the the the the the realm that you were that we’re focusing on uh because I knew what you did from a traditional standpoint and how you were trained and then my eyes really got opened early onto not only what it did to you but then the the success you were having in treating other women and it really made me it just opened my eyes to understanding an entirely different direction that you were moving and you.

A: I remember you weren’t really on board with bringing in the other services in fact uh from day one we decided in our practice to offer Aesthetics and Botox and fillers and chemical peels and you know things like that and I think you’re exact I don’t know do you remember what you told me when I said I was going to bring Aesthetics into my practice?

K: Um no go ahead and refresh my memory I’m sure I’m sure it was less than kind but uh go ahead.

A: Yeah you said you know why don’t you just stick to what you know and uh why are you gonna complicate things and uh so you were against it and I said you know I just want to create a place of kind of a One-Stop shop where women can come for their gynecological care for hormone therapy for Aesthetics and it can all be Under One Roof um but you didn’t think that was a good idea.

K: No I definitely didn’t. So uh how do I politely say that I certainly resisted some of these efforts um I was I was late to the party most times um but I’m so glad and you know ultimately I tell you how how proud I am of you all the time but I’m so glad that I did listen to you because I realized in in in short order that you certainly have a comprehensive understanding of what you desire which translates into what women desire and um I I learned after a brief period of time that I just need to get out of your way and let you follow up on your vision and I’ll be the person behind the scenes that helps kind of pull the business aspects together but um yes I’m definitely glad that I I finally relented and and as always you were right how about that? I’m publicly stating that you are right!

A: So I think that is a great ending to our first episode of podcasts of women isn’t that isn’t there anything better that you wouldn’t rather hear of you were right and I was wrong? So I don’t think we can have a better ending thanks for joining us.

K: You’re welcome, so proud of you thank you.


Outro: Thank you for listening to this episode of HealthiHer you can find us on Instagram Facebook and the web go to www.dr amybrenner.com to learn more. This podcast is for general information only and does not constitute as medical advice the practice of medicine, nursing or other health care services. No patient –  physician relationship is formed. The information in the podcast and any references material or links are at the sole discretion of The Listener and is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Listeners should not delay or disregard obtaining medical advice for any medical issues or diagnoses that they may have and should seek medical advice from their healthcare provider for any such conditions.