Monthly Archives: April 2014


IBD FighterRemission.  The word has a definition, yet it means something different to everyone.  According to Merriam-Webster, remission is period of time during a serious illness when the patient’s health improves.  So what does that really mean?

If I am having a good day with little symptoms does that mean I am in remission?  Continue reading

Like A Bridge Over Toilet Water

IMG_6937Friendships and chronic illness can be a tricky tightrope to walk for many patients. Family, and perhaps partners if you have one, are part of the emotional furniture if you will. They are the ones who are designed to stick around if times get tough, whether they like it or not. It’s an unwritten rule. A famirule. Some families don’t follow these apparent rules of course, and friends or less immediate family are left to plug any emotional holes. (Not a euphemism, unfortunately).  Good friendships have been, and continue to be, a massively important part of my life. Before getting sick I didn’t realise quite how valuable good friends can be in the bleakest of times. Continue reading

Traveling with IBD

561265_10150970875422611_1163113858_nLet’s face it, it doesn’t matter if you’re heading to Europe or New York City, the back streets of Rio or a Caribbean cruise, traveling with IBD is challenging.  But don’t despair – with the proper advance planning and careful packing, it can be done!   My blog, Crohnie Travels, takes you with me as I experience the ups and downs of travel across the country and the world.  Continue reading

The Challenge of Acceptance

IMAG0836At 16, I was finally diagnosed with Inflammatory Bowel Disease after years of consistent symptoms.  My family took me to specialist after specialist to try to find a cause for my frequent “stomach upset” and chronic vomiting, but we never got an answer until my symptoms became so severe they almost killed me.

When I was 15, I had my first full-on IBD attack.  I use the word attack vs. flare because that’s what it felt like. It happened frighteningly fast. I lost control of my bowels and was passing nothing but blood and mucus, in addition to the Exorcist-style vomiting that left me dangerously dehydrated.  It wasn’t until a year later, when I started passing blood again that I had a series of tests that diagnosed me with severe Ulcerative Colitis.  Continue reading

Crohnic Optimism – A choice to live


Does a chronic illness mean the end of life-as-you-know-it?

A Diagnosis and the Choice to Live

I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease in the spring of 2009 and once I figured out what Crohn’s is and what that meant for me I thought that my life was over. I couldn’t believe that I could be so sick and still look totally normal from the outside – well, most of the time. Continue reading

Bear with Me

2013-10-08 22.42.26One of the most challenging aspects in living with a chronic illness is the seemingly relentless stream of varying symptoms. It’s incredibly tiring and disheartening when you are forced to plod through each day almost as though you are trudging through quicksand.

I struggle to make it through 24 hours without feeling completely shattered, both mentally and physically. This isn’t uncommon either. I’m certainly not alone in feeling as though I could sleep or a hundred years. Continue reading

Trust your guts

listen to your gutHow often have we all heard that phrase? Before being diagnosed that sentence always went over my head, but ever since being diagnosed with Crohn’s disease, it has taken a whole new meaning for me.

My symptoms started as a 15 year old, I started to get intermittent stomach pains and lost my appetite. I was already under a paediatric GI for coeliac disease so I discussed things with them and they organised a long list of blood tests, an ultrasound scan and a barium meal follow through.
Continue reading