Q & A with Joy
When did it all begin?
My journey with IBD started in November 2017 when I started seeing blood when I went to the toilet, however I wasn’t diagnosed until my symptoms got much worse in 2018 when I fell pregnant with my son Frankie.
How does your partner support you, has it helped?
My partner has been an amazing support, he completely understands the effects IBD has on me and is always taking over with Frankie when I’m feeling fatigued or ill!
How did you get to the stage of being Positive after your stoma?
Before getting my stoma life everyday was a struggle in pain, I asked my IBD team for the operation after 2 years of medications failing me I was just fed up. So I was actually quite looking forward to my stoma! No one can prepare you for how you will feel after the operation but learning to love your new body is slightly easier knowing it’s now a healthier one!
Why do you feel normalising every body is important?
Normalising every body is so important so that people with disabilities don’t ever feel alone or like they hate their body just because of the way it looks. Self love and body positivity has a huge effect on self confidence and knowing that there are other people out there with stoma bags living their lives can really help how you feel about yourself.
How was your Missguided experience?
Shooting with missguided was an amazing experience, knowing that big brands are using girls of different shapes, sizes and even medical appliances and disabilities is a huge step in the right direction. Everyone deserves to feel represented and it can only grow from here. It’s amazing seeing women like myself in campaigns but I think there’s still room to grow and see disabled models as a norm on e-comm too!
What was your inspiration behind Sickchickcollective?
I started Sick Chick Collective as a temporary pop up shop to raise some money for charity! However the response was so great I grew the idea into clothing to help people feel represented with out ostomy tees and candles!
How was your health during pregnancy?
Pregnancy was really tough with UC as it was all new to me! I found out I was pregnant 2 weeks after my diagnosis so it was all a bit of a shock! I was bleeding heavily at the time as well as going the toilet up to 30 times a day on top of the tiredness you experience with pregnancy it was a lot! I had an amazing consultant and midwife team though who supported me through my whole pregnancy and had access to a lot of extra scans to make sure the high dose of steroids wasn’t affecting the baby too much! So I always felt safe and tried to enjoy it as much as I could!
If you would like to share your story and discuss it with us in a one on one awareness feature please get in touch.