#LiveWellwithIBD

Today is World IBD day, and if you know me I like to find any excuse to celebrate!

So today (and Saturday), I am raising awareness and celebrating the 300, 000 people in the UK alone who are battling against IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease).

To the Crohnie’s who are silently suffering, dealing with endless needles and having to poo into sample jars on a regular basis. To the ones undergoing life changing surgery, to the newly diagnosed who thinks their life will be over because they have to deal with poo – We deserve this day to acknowledge and be proud of how great we actually are.

I feel by doing this blog I am able to give an insight into my sometimes sh*tty life by keeping it real and answering your questions. The IBD world is scary place! I know too well the fear of being handed leaflets about Stomas, colonoscopies, fistulas and liquid diets. I know the feeling when someone says “I have IBS I know how you feel” (queue eye roll) and Oh how I know the feeling of disappointing people – THAT is just the worst.

But listen Crohnies – we have got this. We have the best attitude, the best fighting spirit and probably are the best at grossing people out (hehe)!

Now lets get upbeat….

So what celebration plans are on the table tonight?

Once home from work (I went back on Wednesday and yes, I am still peeing poo) I will be putting my jammies on and pouring myself a glass of prosecco that has been chilling in my fridge since last weekend and popping RuPaul on Netflix. A big hooray for making it through the week!

Then tomorrow?

In the morning a new post about a ‘Day in the Life’ should be live on the blog. Might be a good Saturday morning read… on the toilet?

At night, I am planning on going out and drinking maybe one to many gins – gasp! Alcohol will sterilize my urine though(?) Miss pooey pee pants over here will be out dancing the night away and don’t worry if I bump into you – I promise I wont poo myself in your presence < a legitimate comment from someone! I will also be donning fake tan to look less corpse like and might even be wearing a nappy ( I joke!!!) I have a new dress from ASOS that would totally give me a visible nappy line.

Clair cartoonNow before you ask ‘Should you be doing that’ or my mum reads this and texts saying ‘nooooooo stay home’ don’t worry! I shouldn’t even drink coffee, eat solid food or venture near anyone with a cold, but I do.

AND in the off chance I end up ill… again… I will do what us Crohnie’s do best and power through.

So here is to all of us suffering with Crohn’s, Colitis or any other bowel disease. We have got this!

Now where did I put the gin…..?

#LiveWellwithIBD

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The Five W’s of Crohn’s Disease

Who? – There are currently 115,000 people living with Crohn’s in the UK. I like to think we keep Andrex in business. Imagine an Andrex loyalty scheme? Amazing. Anyway, It tends to favour women more then men and it most common in white people.

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What? – Crohn’s Disease is a chronic illness that causes inflammation of the lining of the digestive system. Symptoms can include – diarrhoea, abdominal pain, fatigue, weight loss and blood/mucus in your poo. These symptoms can be worrying and embarrassing but don’t shy away from telling your doctor. They have probably seen it all before!cropped-cropped-poo-emoji.png

Where? It can affect anywhere from your mouth to your anus. Most common site of inflammation is in your Colon or ileum. Stool samples and cameras are used to diagnose the location. Diagnosing Crohn’s can be a lengthy process and staying strong isn’t easy. Keep track of every little niggle, pain and poo. This can be helpful for you and your doctor.

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When? Most people are diagnosed as teens/early adults – This is a difficult age as who really wants to openly talk about their bowel movements when you should be out partying? If you are feeling lonely, and need to chat to someone, even from the comfort of the toilet…I would highly recommend joining the Crohn’s & Colitis UK Facebook forum – It is a closed group so no one will see any embarrassing questions or stories!

A large number of cases are diagnosed in the elderly too so if you have a change in your poo – get it checked!

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Why? No one knows why Crohn’s affects so many people but a list of factors which contribute to the disease are – genetics (thanks Mum and Dad!), smoking, environment, and a dodgy immune system. * Confused face* Hopefully with research and technology we will get a definite answer soon… Along with a cure!

 

 

 

Celebrating Christmas while chronically ill

Christmas is the meant to be the most magical time of the year, yet when you are toilet bound for hours at a time the magic slowly disappears. You can introduce Christmas toilet paper for a bit of festive cheer in the bathroom… and it is a lot softer on the bum than tinsel.

So, Christmas can and most likely is a stressful time for all us Spoonies out there. Are you reading this friends and family? I am not meaning to be a crabbit scrooge it is just my  inflamed body can’t keep up with your festive cheer – please don’t hate me!

To get through the season of over indulging, partying and germs spreading like wild fire – I have composed a few tips to help me get through.

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  • Plan everything! – If it is your work night out to Christmas day itself. If you are out for food, many restaurants like you to pre order in advance from the Christmas menu so that removes some pressure. Have plenty rest days and don’t feel guilty. A rest day for us Spoonies comes prescribed from the doctor (and a perfect excuse to binge watch Christmas movies)

 

  • Be honest – “Sorry, I won’t be eating vegetables because you will then have to redecorate your bathroom”

 

  • Stock up on essentials – Tissues, hand sanitizer, toilet roll, caffeine drinks, medication, energy tablets (!!!) Run away from any one that coughs (ha)

 

  • Try not to over indulge (coming from me, who has ate nothing but Greggs chicken bakes for the last week) – Eat only 5 pigs in blankets instead of 6, share a bottle of Baileys instead of drinking the whole lot yourself (lactose is not my friend) and don’t put any brussel sprouts on your plate, because why would you anyway, yuck!

 

  •  Enjoy any time you don’t have a stabbing pain in your side, a colon on fire, another UTI, 82 ulcers in your mouth or a sore bum.

 

  • And if all else fails, smile, it is what we do best of course!

 

Merry Christmas to everyone reading this and hopefully 2017 can find a cure so I can spend less time on the toilet and enjoy your company instead! (although I have got use to the potato life)

Thanks x

 

 

Crohn’s & Colitis Awareness Week 2016

*** POO WARNING – DON’T READ ON IF EASILY OFFENDED ***

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So, the 1st of December is not just the first day of advent – it is also the first of seven days raising awareness about Crohn’s and Colitis, and as I enjoy talking about all Crohn’s/toilet paper/blood tests – I thought I would join in. Over the next few posts, I would like to expand on my journey with this disease and tell you it’s not just all poo, bloating and farting. Welcome ulcers, joint pain, embarrassment, fatigue, fistulas, UTIs, surgery, infusions, steroids, weight loss, hair loss, weight gain, anaemia, etc.

Lets start… serious head on… because this is a serious topic.

Poo. We all do it – So why should we be embarrassed on discussing this?

Here is a little story about me over coming my embarrassment with Crohn’s – it only took a few years…

When I first went to the doctor with stomach pains and countless toilet trips, he assumed I had IBS, like many, I was prescribed Buscopan to try and calm the knots and endless diarrhoea. This never worked and the more I pooed, the more weight I lost. My size 10 jeans quickly became too big and I was down to a size 6 in 3 months. A lot of questions were needing answered. I also had a really sore bum!

Over the next year, I was back and forward to my GP with still no diagnosis.

Along with weekly blood tests to try and catch any inflammation, I had to hand over many stool samples to my GP receptionist. At the age of 17 this was pretty awkward and embarrassing. After 5 years though, I class myself as a pro. In and out like a secret drug deal has taken place with Hilda* the receptionist – when in actual fact I have just handed her a paper bag containing a tube of my poo.

FYI – the docs provide you with a stool sample kit. It contains:

1 x metal tray dish thing
1 x wooden spatula
1 x cylinder tube
1 x pair of plastic gloves
A few name/ID stickers to stick on tube so your poo doesn’t go walk about

It never used to be that smooth though. To any newbies out there with IBD, I had many moments of wanting to run out of the doctors surgery and never return. On one exchange of poo, I over filled the tube, which caused a poo explosion on poor Hilda’s desk. It was like when mums refer to their baby’s nappy as a poonami. You would think that at that moment, I would of been left with a red face but surprisingly I wasn’t.  I like to think that was the moment the fear, embarrassment and awkwardness of the disease left me. Now I embrace the weird, poo situations I more often that not get involved in!

Now, I bet if you don’t have Crohn’s or Colitis you are pulling a face like UGH how disgusting – which is fine. I would of been to if I was to accidently stumble across a blog post like this. However I did warn you at the beginning, it’s your fault for continuing to read.

And if you know me, don’t be disgusted with me. I am human, I have quite good control of my bowels, I am not wearing nappies (yet) and please don’t think you can blame your sly farting on me in the pub – I know it’s you!

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I featured on a blog!

My blogging bug is back, as is some viral infection. Shock!

Anyway, you can read all about my last flare and the support I had from my friends, family and amazing boyfriend Russell.

Check it out here !!!

I am now away to boil the kettle for a Lemsip and try to locate a packet of soothers. NA night x