Why I Dyed My Hair Purple For IBD Awareness

Last updated: December 2019

First I would like to thank Julia Matos for this amazing idea. It was her post on my Facebook timeline that inspired me to contribute to this amazing initiative. I consider myself so lucky to know such amazing and unique people who are also battling chronic illness.

Crohn's and Colitis Awareness Week

It's that time of the year again! No, not the holidays, although that (time) is a pretty special time too. It's time for 2019's Crohn's and Colitis Awareness Week. I must say, this is one of my favorite times of the year. Crohn's and Colitis Awareness Week serves as a very special time for those of us living with inflammatory bowel disease. Although we do our best to share our stories year-round, this time is made specifically for us. A time to raise the patient voice and highlight our individual stories and struggles, as well as those of our community. It's a time to raise awareness and hopefully raise funds for research and other IBD initiatives in return.

Raising my voice for IBD awareness

As someone who was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis almost 10 years ago, (and now diagnosed with Crohn's disease), I can say from experience, our condition is not given much respect in the chronic illness realm. People tend to look at inflammatory bowel disease as a "stomach ache" or simply something that can be cured with fruits and veggies. While diet and lifestyle may impact our symptoms and condition as a whole, we are still living with something very serious and going untreated can be life-threatening. I choose to raise my voice this year (and for many years to come) for those who may still be too embarrassed or afraid to do it themselves. I choose to raise my voice for the girl living with Crohn's disease, yet still undiagnosed or the little boy who's trying to navigate his condition in elementary school. I raise my voice for those who haven't yet found their own.

Why I dyed my hair purple for Crohn's and colitis awareness

Recently, I was scrolling through my Facebook timeline when I noticed my friend's new look. A purple look. I loved it. While purple is the color for many conditions, it wasn't just the color that inspired me. My friend Julia explained in her caption that every time someone mentions her hair, she will make an effort to educate them on inflammatory bowel disease. I'm extremely inspired by this creative talking point that I decided to join in the fun!

So this year, I am purple! I look forward to sharing my story and really educating people on life with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. I realize this is a bold move, but not one you should feel pressured to make. While I love this idea *and am always down to try out a new look* I realize it's not everyone's jam. Totally understand. I encourage you to find something you're comfortable with. Something that inspires you. A simple tee-shirt will do. Anything to get people talking!

I am grateful for this week and the progress we've made over time within this community. I look forward to seeing what else this Awareness Week holds!

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