This post is sponsored by Project Baseline by Verily, but opinions are my own.
Before I share what actually put me into remission, I want to acknowledge what’s happening in the world right now with the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s been a stressful and anxious time, and it’s scary for me too, but we’ll get through it together. Right now, more than ever, it’s important to support research of all kinds so each and every one of us can remain healthy.
Recently, I had an appointment with my functional dietitian. I’ve worked with her for 6 months now, and I usually come to her with one million health complaints. This time, when she asked me how I was feeling, I told her (to my surprise), “I have no health complaints.” How fantastic is that!
Now, I don’t want to jinx it, but it’s been a long time (more than 9 years!) since I’ve felt so good. I figured now would be a perfect time to talk about remission with Ulcerative Colitis, and how I got there. It’s been one heck of a journey, and you guys know I’ve tried everything!
Life with an autoimmune disease is a rollercoaster, especially finding remission, so I hope by sharing my experience with you, it can give you hope for getting to a good place with your disease.
My Colitis Journey
June 2011: First diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. It seemed out of the blue at the time, but I know now, I’m pretty much the poster child for getting this disease.
June 2011 – July 2013: I try everything to get into remission with no success, not even a little.
August 2013: I get pregnant, and my body naturally goes into remission.
May 2014: I have a very healthy pregnancy until about a month before my due date. I start having flare symptoms again.
June 2014: I give birth to our sweet Quinn. At this point, I’m already in a flare, so the stress of labor and delivery make it 10 times worse.
June 2014 – October 2014: I refer to this time as “when Mal kept me alive.” I was so sick, going to the bathroom up to 30 times a day and, each time, seeing a toilet full of blood, all while nursing and caring for a newborn. I relied on Mal a lot during this time.
November 2014: I (finally) start my first biologic, which improves my symptoms but never gets me into remission.
February 2016: The first biologic officially fails me. I try my second biologic.
August 2016: I finally achieve full remission!
May 2019: Have a colonoscopy and slip into a minor flare.
January 2020: Back in remission and plan to stay here!
Project Baseline Gut Research Project
It’s never a linear path to health and healing and, boy, do I know that well. Over the years, I tried a lot of different medications until I found something that worked for me. And, of course, what works for me might not work for another IBD patient and vice versa.
We are all unique when it comes to our body and health, which is why it’s so important to support research. Different drugs work for different people, and if we can find better (and safer) options, we won’t have to struggle through failed medications and the frustrations that go with it. No one should have to go through this (having a chronic disease is hard enough!), and I’m confident researchers can continue to find solutions for IBD, but they need our help.
Project Baseline by Verily is an initiative to make it easy and engaging to participate in clinical research. They are conducting the Baseline Gut Research Project and asking those with IBD to contribute to a better understanding of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis by sharing your health history. Compensation will be provided. With more of us at home right now, it’s a great time to help with this research project.
Do you have Crohn’s or Ulcerative Colitis?
I get it. I see you. What you go through every day can be trying, frustrating and even upsetting. And you wouldn’t wish it on anyone, which makes it even more important for you to trust your instincts and share your experiences with others when you know it could truly help.
Because while the number of us living with UC or Crohn’s may be small, together we can create big change. And no matter where you are in your journey, your story can be a part of a solution because knowledge is the foundation of the future and finally finding relief from your disease.
The process is simple:
- Participate in a survey about your health history
- If prompted, add your EHR (electronic health records) to provide a more holistic view of your health history
- The study is 100% online and easy to use –just follow the prompts!
What you receive for participating:
- Up to $100 compensation
- Exclusive access to the Project Baseline community and study participation opportunities
- First access to relevant studies
- Get future access to Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis opportunities