It's been a great week for Crohn's & Colitis awareness in the UK and beyond.
Here in Britain we've had a campaign on social networking urging IBD patients (and their friends and families) to #GetYourBellyOut. A pretty nice idea, and any method of making more of the wider world aware of our illness the better.
This idea has followed swiftly on from the recent #NoMakeUpSelfie campaign to raise awareness for Breast Cancer Care. This involved women all over the globe removing their make-up-coated-masks and baring all for the camera. Many were undeservedly critical of this trend as it was seen as overly self-serving ('look how pretty I am even without make-up!') and many couldn't see a link with the cause it professed to support. However after only 6days worth of natural faces all over social media, over £8m was raised for Cancer Research UK. An amazing achievement. Whether the majority of these women were 'attention seeking' or not, they put their hands in their pockets for the women they love and that's what ACTUALLY matters.
Now the preceding campaign for IBD Awareness has taken it's inspiration in baring flesh but this time it's in the relevant area, (and occasionally slightly more graphic). Men and women have been posting photographs of their unsheathed stomachs and urging the public to donate towards finding a cure for our as yet incurable, illnesses. Many of these men and women have had surgery (some several times over) and many are living with stomas or bear the scars of a reversal. All of those people are incredibly brave in my eyes and are showing the world that our 'invisible' illness isn't always so well hidden.
So in the spirit of charity, and tummy solidarity, here's my little diseased tum too.
3 years and 3months after my first surgery whereby I had part of my bowel removed to save my life. My scar serves as a reminder of how vital that operation was and how ill I truly was. Now I'm more confident and accepting of my changed and ever-changing body. Because it has to be this way. There's no room for vanity with disease and I've certainly found my mirror more forgiving when I'm healthy than on deaths door.
So please donate what you can by either hopping onto the JustGiving page set up by the campaigns founders:
Or see below on the various methods you can donate to Crohn's & Colitis UK:
Help keep my bowels in the manner to which they are un-accustomed. Or, preferably, help us find a cure x