For those suffering from Crohn’s disease
, life can be an embarrassing struggle that keeps you heading to the restroom four, five or six times an hour. But one woman, 32- year-old Krystal Miller, decided she was going to take back the narrative of her own story and find a way to turn her battle with Crohn's into a positive experience.
Krystal has built an online community based on self-love, peer-to-peer community support and body acceptance. She uses pictures of her journey as a rallying cry for other people living with the disease to find their own sense of empowerment and spirit to persevere. Well done Krystal!
What is Crohn's exactly?
It is a chronic disease which causes inflammation of the lower gastrointestinal tract. It can wipe your energy and lead to entire pieces of the intestines being removed. For many, the disease may even require a permanent ileostomy, a surgically made opening in the abdominal wall that connects the lower intestine to an ostomy bag.
Krystal Miller started documenting her life with the disease via her Facebook page, Bag Lady Mama
, a few years ago and since then has built a community around her social feed. Her posts
are blunt, forthcoming, and real when it comes to what it's actually like
living a full (and seemingly awesome) life with a chronic disease, all while raising a family with a loving husband.
And, as you’ll see, she makes no attempt to hide her ostomy bag -- which collects excess waste and helps her go through her days with less interruptions. To date, over 27k people are following her Facebook page where she chronicles her journey and throwing a ton of support her way. Commonly used hashtags on her page include: #ostomates #IBD #awareness #changeperception #ostomyawareness #crohns #colitis #boweldisease
And although dealing with all that Crohn’s can throw at you can seem to be a Herculean task, Krystal keeps everything in perspective with a hashtag: #bagbitchesrock!