“If I could do anything as a Health Activist…” Think big today! Money/ time/ physical limitations are no longer an issue. What is your biggest goal that is now possible?
What’s your one, three, or five year plan for your Health Activism?
My goals used to be small: blog. That was mainly focused on sharing my thoughts about issues that would come up in my life surrounding my Crohn’s Disease. I’m sure like most Crohnies, sharing the stories that make us fume – IBD being compared to IBS, a lack of education with employers or friends, etc – helps. And whilst we’re unwell, writing helps. It certainly did for me. My blog was born whilst I was in hospital. It grew from there; I shared everything that was happening to me, because I was unashamed by my Crohn’s and there was no one talking about it, from the newly diagnosed POV.
Nowadays, I’ve gotten abit wiser; sharing is still important, and I certainly still want to keep up with everything I want to say, but finding the right words has become more important. *in a hushed tone* People are reading my blog, liking my posts, commenting! I feel a duty to be greater than I was, I’m ambitious.
I want to be a good, then great Health Activist. One new step is almost complete: Creating a new local support group for Crohn’s and Colitis. In three weeks our first meeting is being held I am beyond thrilled. It’s been a tough 6 months fighting tooth and nail for things, getting organised and making hard long-term choices. There is so much to do and despite having all the time in the world (the future) to complete them, there is an inherent feeling of pressure to be great. I know that this will come with time, but I really want people to know about IBD and those who suffer from it, I want them to know you can live a good life with it. You can lead a fulfilling life without a colon or with a colectomy bag. And if you’re unsure, I know people who do and can help you overcome the barriers and stigma attached to it. I’ve always fought against my disease and will always do that. Is that a goal too? To always fight for myself? For my health, through good and bad? (I make it sound as if I was forced into a marriage to my Crohn’s Disease; ‘for richer or poorer, for better or worse’!)
For the next year my focus is completing my bike ride and the ensuring a good first year for CCUK Staffordshire South group. Beyond that I want to build on my hospital links and medical professionals within my group, hold super educational events and raise money. How I will do them has yet to come to fruition but I am ambitious enough (some of the Heads at CCUK would say TOO ambitious, but is that ever a bad thing?!) to see them through, no matter what my health throws at me.