My name is Emily and I was diagnosed with a chronic illness called ulcerative colitis in 2012. Though my mom has Crohn’s disease, I had to google ulcerative colitis to figure out what it was and was in denial that I actually had it. By 2015, the disease had become too severe to ignore, and after two hospitalizations in 2016 I started this blog. Writing about my experience helps me cope with living with a chronic illness and I hope reading about it will help you navigate your own challenges.

I have learned a lot since that first colonoscopy, such as the importance of finding a doctor you can trust, how to prepare for an infusion, and that giving up ice cream is just not worth it. Managing my health, doctors’ appointments, and insurance issues feels like a full time job at times. But I’ve also learned that a life with ulcerative colitis is not all bad. This disease has helped me to appreciate the joy in life and approach each day with gratitude. It has made me stronger and more courageous.

I am still learning how to accept and live with a chronic illness. I hope you will join me on this journey.

 Me in front of the inflatable colon at the CCFA Take Steps walk in June 2016.

Me in front of the inflatable colon at the CCFA Take Steps walk in June 2016.