Finally Finding the Right Crohn's Treatment
Last updated: March 2023
Crohn's disease is a challenging diagnosis. For me personally, I had a very severe case that came on very quickly and intensely. For about 8-9 years, I was constantly flaring and struggling to do basic things like keep a job, do groceries, wash dishes, attend social gatherings – and that's just to name a few.
Suffering... but eventually success
Swimming in intense fatigue and constant symptoms made everyday life hard and little things became frustrating. I've chosen to write on this topic to share that Crohn's disease can be manageable and you can end up living a vivacious life.
I think we can get easily caught up in the negatives of this diagnosis, which there are a lot, let's be real. But we forget to share the positives and we forget to share success stories.
My early days with Crohn's
I was diagnosed in 2011 when I was 21 years old. I had just graduated from college. I am so thankful for this timing because at least I was able to get through all of my schooling healthy and I was able to enjoy college life as a healthy young adult.
Once I turned 21, though, life changed drastically. And as mentioned above, I was in a constant flare for about 8-9 years. Trying all the medications, desperately waiting for 1 to work. Dealing with the awful symptoms every single day was draining physically but also mentally and spiritually. I was a shell of myself for many years.
Xeljanz changed the game for me
In the beginning of 2019, I was finally put on a medication that worked for me called Xeljanz. It is a pill I take twice a day, which I love because no need to go to an infusion center or have to use a pen to prick myself. Just an easy pill morning and night.
When I started this medication, I felt a difference almost immediately. I didn't want to get my hopes up since I had tried so many other medications and failed them, but this time I knew it was different.
Goodbye urgency, goodbye fatigue
With time, I only improved and improved. I started to gain weight. The intense abdominal pains dissipated. The intense and constant urge to be near a bathroom went away. Fatigue lessened. My mood improved because my symptoms improved. I started to feel like me again.
I had energy again which was the most amazing feeling. I felt light. I could be spontaneous and just jump in my car and ride to a store or meet a friend. I no longer feared not being near a bathroom. I was no longer grumpy because I was always tired. Honestly, I just feel free again. No longer tied down by the shackles of Crohn's disease.
One of the best parts, too, is that I am able to eat more foods again. I tolerate way more of my trigger foods and can partake in eating with others socially without fearing repercussions. I can sit down at a restaurant and not have anxiety, I just pick the best options for me on the menu and enjoy. I am even exercising daily and feel strong again, no longer do I feel frail or sickly looking.
Staying hopeful with Crohn's
Friend, don't lose hope. Your body is on your side and wants to do good, it just needs the right tools. Sometimes finding the right medications and appropriate diet for you can be a long journey, but once you get there, you get there.
So just know if you are in the pits today, struggling to get out of bed and curled up in tremendous pain. I was once there and I know your plight. And I'm here to say: Don't lose hope because there is a solution out there for you – keep fighting.
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