Growing with Ulcerative Colitis – I Was Diagnosed at 10…

Introduction:

I am 20 years old, from Canada and was diagnosed at age 10. I am a political science student at the University of Western Ontario.

Colitis Symptoms:

Currently have no symptoms!!

Hello,
My name is Brittany and I am 20 years old.

I was 10 years old when I first started noticing blood. At the time, my dad was battling lung cancer. I was too afraid to tell anyone and burden my family with even more stress, and was in denial, so I just went on living my life as normal. Soon it caught up with me, and I had to be hospitalized. As a child this is very scary. After a blood transfusion and colonoscopy I was diagnosed. I was so lucky to be put in touch with my current doctor as he has been so helpful and followed me into adulthood.
I felt so guilty at the time, as I was in a hospital 2 hours from home, while my dad was battling cancer at home. It was a tough year and I was hospitalized twice, and on a combination of different drugs, and my dad lost his battle.

My childhood wasn’t typical, being in a hospital

and visiting doctors so often

trying to figure out UC as a preteen is quite difficult.

The summer before I was to start university I was hospitalized with a bad flare. That is when I started on remicade, and it has been a miracle. If I feel myself getting sick, I will have an infusion and am usually better in a matter of days.
It has been very hard growing up while dealing with UC, along with the hard times of being a teen/young woman. I found it difficult to explain to friends and boyfriends why I was always sick. I was lucky enough to find my soul mate who is beside me every step of the way, and understands as best he can the challenges I face.
I have learned how lucky I am to have such supportive people in my life, yet how alone one can feel when battling this disease. I sometimes worry about the future and what it will bring, but I try to wake up every day and tell myself I can do this. I figure, if I’ve been through this for 10 years already I can do it.
It is difficult growing up with UC, but I hope that I can be of some reassurance to others, as to it isn’t always bad, and it is possible to enjoy life with UC.
Colitis medications:
Imuran
Remicade infusions
Iron Infusions
written by Brittany
submitted in the Colitis Venting Area



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4 Responses to Growing with Ulcerative Colitis – I Was Diagnosed at 10…

  1. Debra March 23, 2012 at 5:10 pm #

    Thank you for sharing your story. As someone who’s been recently diagnosed, it gives me a lot of faith that I can move forward despite any issues UC might bring my way :)

  2. claudia anderson March 26, 2012 at 10:26 am #

    Dear Brittany~
    Thank you so much for sharing…
    As you have probably already read, it seems that people with UC share having stressful lives or being in a state of stress–even at 10 years of age (your dad’s disease must have been so stressful for you, it breaks my heart to think of what you must have gone through). Along with your meds & (hopefully) a change in diet, also decide to start to let go of those feelings that stress you. Easier said than done, right? But there is a lot of help out there for anyone who seeks to change their emotional state–you really can not separate your body from your mind (think about how we get an adrenaline response from a scare–that’s an emotional feeling leading to a physical response). Meditation is a good start & it’s free! There is also forgiveness–of ourselves & others. Also practicing being non-judgemental about ourselves & others. We all have our “stuff” that we think we can control, but we really have control over nothing except how we chose to see a situation. That’s my goal… good luck, dear.

  3. Randi
    Randi May 16, 2012 at 10:00 am #

    I am also 20 years old. Being so young and managing those symptoms is hard! I am glad you are feeling better!

  4. Pam September 26, 2012 at 7:27 pm #

    Hi Brittany, My 25 yr. old son is on Remicade, he has every 8 weeks, we asked if he could spread out more from the 8 wks and they said that was the minimum for maintenance. He has been in remission for a year now. Are you saying you only take the treatment when you feel a flair coming on? Just curious. Thanks

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