Over the past two weeks I have seen headlines about a group of women who all suffer with a bowel condition have created a calender to raise awareness and money for the Charity Purple Wings. All the women featured in this calender all have ileostomy bags which are similar to colostomy bags. I choose to put up this post today as tomorrow is ‘World Ostomy Day’ which a lot of people have never heard of.
There are three main reasons I wanted to comment on what I call the Crohns Calender, the first is I have Crohns Disease, I have had it for 15 years (I’ll provide more detail in another blog if requested). Two I am an amateur model, I feel this will do wonders for promoting body image and three this hasn’t got as much press as it should have done!
This calender features 11 incredibly brave women who suffer with either Crohns Disease or Colitis and due to these conditions these women have had to have some of their intestines removed and have a bag put in place instead to collect faeces. For some reason this is still such a taboo subject, and I don’t understand why, a lot of people have to have bags put in place usually as a last resort, as if the people who had these operations haven’t been through enough now we as the general public are making them feel embarrassed about something that potentially saved their lives.
This is where this calender comes in! It proves that you don’t have to be embarrassed about a bag, it’s just a bag, I know a lot of people would be self-conscious about this and you can’t blame them. Speaking as someone with Crohns I might have to have a bag at some point in my life and it’s such a comfort to know that there are brave men and women who have these bags and don’t care who knows! And to them I’d like to say thank you, you are an inspiration.
I mentioned about this doing wonders from a modelling perspective and I really think it will. I remember a few years ago on some of Gok Wan’s TV shows he would feature amputee models in his shows and on the runways, I thought that was fantastic and we have seen in increase in amputee models, not as much as we should of. But hopefully through this calender it will remind us about the importance of featuring disabled models, whether you can see the disability or whether it’s what some of us Crohnies called it an ‘invisible illness’.
Please spread the word and get your copy of the calendar at www.purplewingscharity.com