Sarah supports Healthier Together

I was diagnosed with severe UC at age 18, when I was a freshman in college. No longer a pediatric patient, but still a very young adult, I was in the midst of an exciting and invigorating transition. Yet all of a sudden I found my formerly healthy, athletic body hurdling into a blurry black hole of pain, weakness, and dependence, my vivacious spirit subdued with confusion and powerlessness. It was the beginning of the four most formative years of my life, and here I was, thrust into a novel and unprecedented conception of my self.
Little did I know then, but what it meant to be “me” was a struggle shared by many others, all at varying points in our respective choose-your-own-adventure life stories. It took me 6 years before I had a real conversation with anyone else with IBD (outside of my own gastroenterologist, an incredibly gifted woman and role model). If it weren’t for my almost accidental discovery of ImproveCareNow, I might have never been given this opportunity. After many years of silence, I was more than ready to reach out and be reached back to in return. There are many more pediatric patients out there–not just IBD patients, but those suffering from a slew of chronic illnesses and conditions–in need of the intentional care, collaborative conversations, attentiveness and respect that will make them feel appreciated and understood. The ICN network of patients, doctors, clinicians, psychologists, social workers, researchers, families and friends, as well as the C3N Project, have the proven potential to make a world of difference in these children’s lives. We have much more reaching out to do in extending the model for hope. This is why I support HealthierTogether–so that all of us can be a part of the solution!

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