The ALLIANCE Humans of Scotland, shares and showcases short stories about the everyday lives of the people we engage with.
“Some of you will be aware that Scotland footballer Darren Fletcher suffers from Ulcerative Colitis and had to take time out from his career to have his colon removed. As a member of the Tartan Army and someone who has gone through the same operations for my Colitis, I have followed his story closely and spoken to him in person a few times about life with IBD.
One thing that has struck me about his story is how determined he is not to let IBD and requiring surgery to achieve remission be a negative factor in his life. I’ve tried to follow his example and this got me thinking of all the opportunities that have come my way as a result of having faulty intestines.
Since diagnosis I have become involved in volunteering for both Crohn’s and Colitis UK and the Ileostomy Association and am now Lead Volunteer for the CCUK Clyde Network. I am a member of the Cross Party Group on IBD at the Scottish Parliament and give an annual lecture on IBD to Pharmacy undergraduates at Strathclyde University. Not to mention the countless projects I’ve been involved with through The ALLIANCE to improve health and social care services in Scotland and the close friends whom I’ve met through volunteering.
I’ve learnt the importance of Self Management and how tools such as Mindfulness and NLP can help me take control of the negative thinking that comes with having a long-term condition, even through some difficult times. Being involved in all these things has given me so many life skills and experiences I would have never been exposed to had I not developed Ulcerative Colitis. So, even despite life being a struggle at times, having faulty intestines has most definitely made my life better.”