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My name is Erin Stuart and I’ve just turned 10 I was diagnosed with Crohns in Sept 2014 age 8 the Crohns was affecting the join at my small and large bowel. I had been unwell for 18 months with terrible pains in my tummy and everyone thought I was getting every bug going. I’d had to give up football and highland dancing as I just couldn’t manage it and was so grumpy when I did I was just about managing school every other day.

I didn’t understand my illness to begin with and still struggle a bit to now but my IBD nurses and doctors along with my Mum, Dad, two brothers and wee sister along with my extended family & friends were/are great. When I’m not feeling to good my mum just says is it the pain and I say yes.  In 2014 after my colonoscopy and endoscopy I was told I would go on a liquid diet called modulen for 8 weeks and not eat anything.  I drank the modulen with crusha ( i will never ever drink crusha again) during that time I also started taking a drug called Mercaptopurine which is the liquid form of Azathioprine ( my mum kept me right there) but just at the end of the 8 weeks in time for advent calendars and eating  I was very poorly with my crohns and had to be admitted to Yorkhill as the modulen hadn’t worked. I’d lost even more weight and couldn’t stop being sick, I ended up on steroids for the next few months, only good thing was I could start eating again, I also had an MRI & a bone density scan but I was still flaring.

In July 2015 I was readmitted to the new children’s hospital and had another colonoscopy and endoscopy the doctors found my Crohns was affecting more of my large bowel and changed my treatment I had to learn how to inject myself once a week with a drug called methotrexate which I hate doing and it makes me feel sick but at the moment it’s keeping me well and I am back playing football with Port Glasgow Juniors Community Sports Club and I have just started athletics thou I haven’t managed dancing yet I am hopeful that I’ll get back to that soon.

My football team & coaches have been fantastic and are helping me raise awareness of this lifelong chronic disease we recently climbed Ben Nevis in aid of the Catherine McEwan Foundation and I managed to do it too. Without Crohns I wouldn’t have met some wonderful people including Derek & Julie McEwan and can’t thank them enough for all they do and also for asking me to write about my journey so far with IBD. Here’s to staying well.

Erin x