This year I am participating in spin4 crohn’s & colitis cures, an exciting and inspirational fundraising event that supports the mission of the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation which is to cure Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and to improve the quality of life of children and adults affected by these diseases.
Most people struggle with their bodies. My struggle has always been a little different.
When I was 18, I was diagnosed with Crohn’s.
In college I was hospitalized countless times, and surgery every 6-9 months. I've had three non-elective surgeries to solve problems caused by Crohn's but didn't involve my colon.
Here’s the thing–– being chronically ill sucks. It’s physically trying because hey, pain, but it’s also mentally trying for a number of unfun reasons. And one of the biggest reasons? Feeling like you have to prove to people how sick you really are.
My illness is “invisible,” but I could show you blood panels that “prove” just how high the inflammation in my body is. Better yet, if I’m feeling particularly sassy, I can show you a picture of the inside of my colon. Because I have it on my phone.
Point being, you should never make an ill person feel like they have to prove themselves to you. Honestly, the best thing a person could give most sick patients is unyielding support and belief.
Being sick is expensive. Being chronically sick is extra expensive, because it never ends.
Among the many parts of being sick that I often think about when I’m thinking “damn, this is unfair,” that’s honestly what I think about the most. Being sick is exorbitantly, life-ruining-ly expensive.
There’s the typical costs that everyone probably associates with an illness–– hospital visits, fancy new medications, procedures and CT scans. Thanks to insurance (LITERALLY thanks, Obama) these costs are seriously lowered, but “lowered” from their crazy high initial costs still comes out to “too much money for a 27 year old with student loan debt.” I think that’s the technical total on my last medical bill.
It’s estimated that the average patient with Crohn’s pays about $18,000 per year in direct costs. Basically, if I didn’t have Crohn’s I could take the money I saved and send a kid to college every year for the rest of my life. And trust me, I would love to do that.
So this October, I will ride in honor of the estimated 3 million Americans affected by these debilitating digestive diseases. While many suffer in silence, spin4 crohn’s & colitis cures will bring the community together in a fun, energetic and supportive atmosphere.
Your donation will help support local patient programs, as well as important research projects. This cause is very important to me and I appreciate your help as we fight for cures!
The more money we raise, the closer we will be to making life more manageable for patients who live with these diseases every day.
I spin4 crohn’s & colitis cures!
The Mission of the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation is to cure Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and to improve the quality of life of children and adults affected by these diseases.