Going Dark

I’m not feeling too great at the minute.  Still.  My joints hurt so much, my wrists, hands, ankles, shoulders, hips… the pain is like a gnawing ache, and it moves around, floats from place to place in my body.  Isn’t that odd?

The tiredness is terrible.  I can’t wake in the mornings and then fall asleep all day, it’s the fatigue that is so hard to deal with.  The exhaustion makes me feel useless and like a sick person, it sucks out all energy, not just physically but mentally and emotionally.

I saw my GP this week and had some blood tests.  He suggested it could be a flare up of Ulcerative Colitis.  Isn’t that a joke! I thought removing my colon got rid of this bullshit but it turns out it’s all these ‘extra intestinal manifestations’ (I know this sounds like a ghostly poo but it means when the disease affects other parts of the body).

My eyes are so dry that I can’t open them in the mornings and they itch all day, my mouth is constantly dry no matter how much I drink.  My skin is dry, my legs are white with the skin coming away.

I’m going back next week for the results, if my inflammation markers are up then I potentially will have to have a course of steroids and go back under the gastro team at the hospital.  He also tested for Rheumatoid Arthritis to see if that is what is hurting my joints and so I just need to wait and see what he says on Wednesday.

Im not a great person to be around right now.  I don’t want to talk to people, I don’t want to go out.  I make myself do the things I have to do, but really want to just be hiding in the duvet cocoon.  The problem is because I talk so much normally (read: I’m a gobby cow), that when I feel hurt and sad, I go quiet and this worries those closest to me.  There’s a phrase on that TV series 24 when an agent turns off communications usually for their own safety or for the safety of those around them, it’s called ‘going dark’.

Going Dark: When an individual disappears or suddenly become unavailable or out of reach for an undefined period of time, generally for security reasons.

This describes me right now.  The only place I can deal with sharing at the moment is on my blog.  I know this can seem difficult for my husband and friends but it is all I have at the minute.

I feel so sad.  I thought all these surgeries would make me feel better (and I have to keep reminding myself that I AM better than I was) but it is hard to still be a sick person.  It’s silly because I always knew there was no cure for Ulcerative Colitis and that it is a life long chronic illness, an auto-immune disease that means my body is fighting itself.  But after everything I have been through, I just want a break.  I don’t want to be fucking ill anymore. I bloody hate being a poorly person.  I despise the burden I become to those around me.  I can’t stand that my lovely boy, the best person in my life, my husband Timm has to, yet again, bear the weight of my illness.

I’m sorry this post is so miserable.  I sometimes feel that I made a rod for my own back in being so god damned positive all the time!!! I feel I am letting people down when I feel sad.  But in a way, it helps.  I’m reading back all that advise that I give to others and remembering that I need to take it myself.

And so with that, I am going to try and treat myself a little better, sit in the sun, paint my nails, read a book.  Do the tiny things that I can manage that will ease my mind and warm my soul.

Thanks for reading

 

Sam x

 

Fat is not sexy…

These are the words of Steve Miller, do you remember him? He did a show called Fat Families where he basically bullied people into exercise and eating salad by calling them “massive fatties” at every opportunity in order to motivate them to lose weight.

Well I unfortunately stumbled upon his twitter feed yesterday and unsurprisingly it is filled with fat shaming posts.  What does surprise me is how far he is willing to push his condemnation of overweight people.  His feed is filled with venomous statements labelling people “fat” “lazy” and stating that they aren’t curvy, just fat.

steve miller twitter fat shaming

Here’s the charmer himself telling the world about the “reality” and “truth” that fat people are unattractive and aren’t able to be in a loving relationship.

steve miller twitter fat shaming

Also fat people don’t have sex.  It’s the truth, it must be!!! This vile Alan Carr wannabe said so!!  All I can think is that he has been taking a leaf out of the Katie Hopkins school of fame and hopes that if he can be as offensive as possible then he will gain fame.  He extolls himself as ‘the Simon Cowell of the slimming world’ with his Mr Nasty character and believes that fat shaming helps to motivate people to lose weight.

What a dick.

I really want to post an intelligent and reasoned argument as to why this vile toad is wrong, but I only have expletives!  How very fucking dare he?  His ‘reality’ and ‘truth’ is bullshit.  He doesn’t get to judge others on their outward appearance and assume that his fucked up, warped view of the world is the truth.

“The reality is; most men don’t want an overweight lover so as soon as they begin to get heavier their partner begins to look elsewhere. After all, who wants a fat woman on top of them in the bedroom?”

What world is he living in? His assumption that all women want to be a size 6 and all men would baulk at the sight of a woman larger than a supermodel is fucking ridiculous.

You know what is sexy? Confidence.  There is nothing hotter than a person who glows with self love, who is happy, joyous and loving life.  You know that person who lights up a room when they enter, who is interesting and clever and witty and you are drawn to them.  And they may be a size 6 or a size 26, the outer shell doesn’t matter when you are in the presence of someone awesome.

You know what isn’t sexy? A person who tries to make money from shaming people into feeling bad about themselves, who name-calls and belittles others.  Somebody who takes their own hurt and pain and puts it onto others.

Worry not, because they amazing world of twitter has responded with vigour.  Awesome blogger and fat activist Daisy replied.

steve miller twitter fat shaming

Whilst I pissed myself at Fat Becky‘s response…

steve miller fat shaming

Yeah, yeah I know lowering ourselves to mocking his appearance isn’t the most adult thing to do, but sometimes, some people are so vile that they kind of deserve it…

There is nothing wrong with wanting to lose weight, get fitter or change your lifestyle, but how many really believe that someone bullying them will help? No one should lose weight because someone else makes them feel bad about themselves, weight loss and getting fitter should be a personal choice and one that is emotionally healthy for them.

And that personal choice goes both ways, a friend told me recently that she had been dieting for years and had started a new regime, her husband sighed heavily and told her that he would rather her gain another 5 stone than him have to see her punish herself any longer.  Not everyone wants to be thin, nor does every partner care what size their loved one is.

After my surgeries I was a little shy in front of my husband, I wore long vests in the bedroom to hide my changed body, this became a habit that I eventually tired of.  I realised I wasn’t fooling him, he didn’t think I was a size 0 under my size 16 vest!!! And so I rid myself of the garments and shook what my momma gave me… The result? An honest conversation where he told me that when I covered up it made him worry that I didn’t trust him to love me, it also made him think I couldn’t be enjoying myself if I was thinking about my stomach.

This vile man, Steve Miller, would like you all to believe that if you are fat, no one will love you.  I call bullshit.  If the people around you only care about the number in the back of your dress then dump those fuckers NOW.  True friends, partners, lovers care about you as a whole package and your size and shape pales into insignificance when it comes to your self esteem, confidence, joy and character.

Sex and love are about respect, trust, fun and excitement.  These things come through self esteem and a great relationship not through salads and treadmills.

Fat is not sexy? What a load of shit!!!

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No make up, no photoshop, size 16 and in the words of the amazing Amy Schumer, I can catch a dick any time I want…

Steve Miller, go fuck yourself!

 

Sam x

Lift Plus 360 – ostomy adhesive remover review

So those clever chickens over at Opus Healthcare have come up with this new product Lift Plus 360, a medical adhesive remover for people with ostomies.

When I had my stoma I always used an adhesive remover as taking the bags off were the trickiest part, that super great seal you yearn for when putting the bag on to ensure there are no leaks suddenly becomes a huge chore when you have to take the bag off, especially if you use extra flange extenders or those stoma donuts.  The adhesive removers act to pretty instantly stop the sticky.

It can be painful and really affect the skin around the stoma to pull the bags away and so I always recommend a good remover.

Now the Lift Plus 360 goes one step further, the new spray can be applied from any angle (hence the 360° name) meaning it is SO much easier to use.

lift plus 360 opus healthcare ostomy supplies

I no longer have a stoma and so I called on my lovely pal who has a permanent stoma to try out Lift Plus 360 and let me know what he thought.

“It really does work!” he said “whatever angle you spray it from, you get a great steady stream that is directed exactly where you need it.”

“The worst part of a bag change is pulling the sticky side away from your skin, especially if you’re a bloke who has hair on the stomach area.  With some sprays it doesn’t take all the adhesive off and I end up pulling my hair out, with Lift Plus 360 it was a breeze!”

Adhesive removers have been around for a while, but Opus have redesigned this to make it more user friendly.

Opus say:

Opus Healthcare, a division of Alliance Pharmaceuticals Ltd, has launched Lift Plus 360, the latest range of non-sting adhesive remover. Using the latest bag on valve technology, Lift Plus 360 is a highly effective range of medical adhesive removers that reduce the pain associated with the removal of stoma pouch adhesives. The new spray can be applied from any angle (360°) offering greater efficiency for the user and comes in two varieties.

The new range is an upgrade from Opus’s previous product, the Lift Plus. By removing the propellant to create Lift Plus 360, the product is no longer cold on the skin. It is also more environmentally friendly as the removal ensures less wastage due to greater product emptying.

Other benefits of using Lift Plus 360 include:

  • Reducing the pain associated with removing pouches and flanges
  • It will not irritate sore or broken skin
  • Dries instantly and no need to wash the skin
  • The spray can be applied from any angle (360 degrees), offering greater reliability.
  • The removal of the hydrocarbon propellant ensures:
    • The product is not cold on the skin
    • There’s more product in the can
    • Less wastage due to greater product emptying
    • It’s more environmentally friendly

To order a sample call 0800 458 7605 or for more information take a peek at the Opus website.

The site also has some great ostomy information so is well worth a look.

Sam x

This post was sponsored by representatives of Opus Healthcare.  I do a few paid reviews on this site but ONLY choose products and companies that I believe are a good fit for my awesome So Bad Ass readers and will always disclose when posts are sponsored.

What happens during a colonoscopy?

This is one question that I often get asked, that may seem like an odd thing to ask someone but as I am sometimes seen as the voice of poo I get a LOT of poo based questions!!

So you have been told you need to have a camera up your bum and it is TERRIFYING! The reason you are having the test is diagnostic, so doctors can take a look inside your colon.  The actual reason can be so varied but usually because there has been unusual activity, diarrhoea, bleeding, mucus, incontinence etc.

Not only are you dealing with the worry of what they will find (and I know we all assume cancer, and though that can be the case, there are SO many other reasons you are having problems, so don’t scare yourself into hysterics before you get any results!). But many people feel embarrassed to discuss with others and the thought of someone looking up your bum is just mortifying.  This happens with ‘poo diseases’, if you were suspected to have diabetes and were going for blood tests, you shouldn’t feel any shame but because it is from the bottom, it can feel ridiculously embarrassing.

Just remember that these medical professionals do this every day.  They will not be embarrassed, they won’t be giggling or thinking what an odd shaped bottom you have! They see thousands of bums a year and I promise you, they are not judging you!

So what happens? Firstly let me say, I am not medically trained and this is my experience of having many colonoscopies over the past 11 years.  It is really important that if you have any specific medical questions that you speak to your doctor.

Which type?

Well there are a few different ‘up the bum’ cameras.

Flexible Sigmoidoscopy

This is used to look at the inside of the large intestine from the rectum through to the sigmoid but not sufficient  in the ascending or transverse colon (two-thirds of the colon).

Rigid Sigmoidoscopy

This is a procedure done to look at the rectum and lower colon.

Colonoscopy

This is an examination of the large bowel and the end part of the small bowel with a camera on a flexible tube passed through the anus.

Colonoscopy is similar to sigmoidoscopy—the difference being related to which parts of the colon each can examine. A colonoscopy allows an examination of the entire colon. A sigmoidoscopy allows an examination of the distal portion (about 600 mm) of the colon.

sigmoidoscopy colonoscopy colon

Pouchoscopy

A Pouchoscopy is a procedure to examine the lining of your ileo-anal pouch for any inflammation, abnormal growths or tissue.  This is for people who have had their bowels removed and a ‘jpouch’ or ileoanal anastomosis formed.

j pouch pouchoscopy

Preparation

The colon must be completely clear of poo for the test to be performed properly. For a few days, you may be  required to follow a low fiber diet and on the day before the scope, you will be given a laxative preparation.

There are different types of bowel prep but all of them have the intention of clearing EVERYTHING out.  Most require you to drink the medication mixed with a lot of water.  It can be really difficult to stomach this but it is vital you complete all the medication given to you.  It will be explained to you how to take your type of medication but if you have any questions, then do speak to your doctor.

You will want to stay at home and close to the toilet once you start your bowel prep.  Trust me on this one, STAY CLOSE to the loo!

colonoscopy prep lol

 

What next?

Once you get to the hospital, it is necessary to remove your clothes and change into a gown before the procedure.  You will be taken through to the room where there may be a few medical folk in the room.  You will be asked to get on the examination table and lay on your side with your knees up towards your chest, the back of your gown is open to the doctor.

Some people choose to have sedation to help them through the procedure.  In my own experience I could handle the pouchoscopy and sigmoidoscopies without sedation, there was very minimal discomfort.  But for the colonoscopy, I have the sedation as the camera is going further into the colon and I personally struggled without.  You could also be offered gas and air. Speak to your doctor beforehand to decide what (if any) pain relief is needed.

If you have the sedation, you will generally have a canula inserted into a vein for the sedative to be pushed through into your blood stream, once it goes in, it acts very quickly and you may feel light headed and like you are a bit drunk!  You should feel relaxed and perhaps sleepy and in a  dreamlike state.

You may also have a clip on your finger to keep check on your pulse and perhaps a blood pressure cuff.  Staff are with you all the way through, at every scope I have had, there has been a nurse to sit by me and speak to me throughout the procedure.

The first step is usually a digital rectal examination, where the doctor inserts a finger into your anus. The endoscope is then passed through the anus, up the rectum into the colon.The endoscopes have multiple channels for instrumentation, air, suction and light etc.

Colonoscopy position

 

 

The bowel is expanded with air to maximise visibility, this can feel uncomfortable and make you have the sensation that you need to poo.  As you lay on your side, you may be able to see the screen the the doctor watches so they can see in real time the inside of your colon, some people may not want to watch the screen but I find it really interesting.

Biopsies may be taken during the procedures, watching this on the screen you see a claw type instrument that ‘grabs’ a section of the inside of the colon and pulls back to remove a tiny biopsy.  Though this isn’t painful, you can feel a little tug from inside which can feel odd.

The whole thing (depending on which scope you have) lasts between 10 and 40 minutes.  Afterwards, some recovery time is usually allowed to let the sedative wear off.  Most doctors require that patients have a person with them to help them home afterwards especially if you have had sedation.

One very common aftereffect is a bout of flatulence and minor wind pain caused by the air that is pumped into the colon during the procedure.  It can feel like you are really full up with wind and the only way to remove it is by passing wind.  You may have a little stomach ache afterwards or perhaps be sleepy after the sedation, it is good to rest for a day or so.

As with any medical procedure there are always the potential for complications, these aren’t common but could include; an adverse reaction to the sedative used during the exam, bleeding from the site where a tissue sample (biopsy) was taken or a polyp or other abnormal tissue was removed or a tear in the colon or rectum wall (perforation).  Your doctor will explain all the risks before you sign the consent form.

colonoscopy sigmoidoscopy

So there we go, I hope this post has helped answer a few questions.  Just remember that it’s a medical procedure, I know it can feel upsetting and embarrassing but it is necessary.  The idea of this blog came from me wanting to #StopPooBeingTaboo and this is why I feel it important to talk about these sorts of issues.  We are told that it is impolite to speak of body fluids and bottoms but it is the social embarrassment and fear that stop people seeking medical help.  The quicker you seek help, the better it is for your health.

If you have any more questions or other aspects of life with IBD that you would like me to post about, feel free to comment below or message me through my Facebook or twitter.

Sam xx

 

'Mummy Tummy' F**k that!

Firstly, yuk, ‘mummy tummy’?? Are we 6?

I came across this story on twitter about the Queen’s eldest grandchild Zara Phillips and how she had attended an event and been photographed wearing a dress that showed she was carrying some weight around her middle, the media speculated that she was ‘up to 5 months pregnant’ and the womankind sighed a big sigh and realised that she was a woman who gave birth 18 months ago and now her body has changed.

They used this cringe inducing term ‘mummy tummy’ as if leading with a cutesy term negates from the fact they are shaming a woman for her body shape in a national newspaper and propagating ideals of negative body image for women.

The fact that this is news at all says a lot about the times we live in.  There are children fleeing murder and drowning in our oceans, tens of thousands of animals being slaughtered and sacrificed, people in the UK living in poverty and using food banks, people with disabilities being failed by the government, yet the news in our papers tells of a woman whose body looks different post birth.

They compare her to Kate, Duchess of Cambridge who was pictured 6 weeks after the birth of her daughter looking pretty much as she had before pregnancy and speculated on whether Zara had a medical condition where her stomach muscles had split.

Because what every woman wants is to be asked if she is pregnant and then compared to someone slimmer than them!  Zara was forced to make an official announcement to tell the world she isn’t pregnant. Pregnancy, labour, childbirth and those first years of your child’s life are bloody tough on the body, you gain weight, your body changes more than you could imagine, you become the perfect incubator for your baby, then you push a human being out of your vagina. Perhaps you then feed them from your breasts, your sleep pattern changed wildly and frankly, everything that you thought was important before pales into insignificance when you look at your wonderful offspring.  Ladies, give yourself a break!

love your body mummy tummy body confidence

A friend of mine is pregnant with twins and I visited her along with another pal, the three of us have been friends for over 20 years.  Preggers friend asked the two of us (5 kids between us) how long it takes for your tummy to go back.  My pal answered ‘about 6 weeks’, my answer? ’14 years and counting…’

Because we are all so different, my friend isn’t any better than I am for losing weight straight away, genetics and lifestyle make the difference and I don’t feel any shame for not looking the way I did before I gave birth to a total of 28 pounds of (three) children over 4 and a half years.

Society assumes that we all give a shit.  That we all are dreaming of a size 6 body.  Dudes, I was a size 8 before the bambinos, I am now a 16 and despite years of dieting, always stay around this size.  Could I lose weight? Yes, probably. But I love food, eat too big portions and spend a good proportion of my days sat on my bum writing stuff for blogs/magazines/books.  I also really like booze.  Beer, wine, cocktails… Yup! And I love food and booze more than I care about being thin.

My family are mostly all big women, I honestly think I am predisposed to be chunkier, we tend to be slim till mid twenties/early thirties and then gain weight.  Sometimes I think I would like to be smaller, generally when I see a ton of women body shaming or when I go shopping and can’t find my size.  Right now I am a mum of three and run a photography business, I’m starting a new career and working for the bloody awesome Responsible Fishing as an artist/writer.  Life is pretty full and I like to enjoy big dinners with awesome family and friends.  These aren’t excuses, I fully accept that it is because of these things (too many calories and too little exercise) that I stay the weight I am.

My body has been through so much in the past 18 months (not to mention the ten years of medication previously), three surgeries and two hernias in 18 months make exercise difficult, I felt like I was always waiting to be out of recovery mode!

ibd body confidence colostomy bag ileostomy women self esteem chronic illness

But mentally and emotionally, I am learning so much.  After everything I have been through I have a new respect and love for my body.  Yes, it has stretch marks, scars and illness but it has carried me through these battles and still holds me strong.

There is so much pressure on women, especially once you have had children and I just wish there was more love and positivity shown towards post natal women.  Mamas you are wonderful! You made a human being!!! You are goddesses!

When you see your stretch marks, know that your wonderful body got bigger to enclose and home your baby, your stomach may be softer because it’s missing the 9 months it held that baby inside.  When your breasts change shape (and nipples, no one tells you about the nipple changes do they?! Yes, they are huge now!) it is because of the milk your body created and the hormones that make your body baby ready.

Your body may have changed, but so has everything else! Aren’t you more filled with love? Don’t you feel different in your head than before you had children? Don’t your priorities change? We accept all these mental and emotional changes for the better yet assume that physical changes are for the worse.

Some women naturally just ping back into the same shape as they were pre pregnancy, some change completely.  Neither is right or wrong, it is just nature.

We need to band together and refuse to see our fellow woman shamed for being ‘too’ anything.  Too thin, too fat, too muscly, too wobbly.

No one gets to tell you that you are ‘too’ anything.

You are more than your dress size.  More than the size of your waist.  More than your stretch marks.  More than your scars.

You are an awesome human being and those who judge you for your physical appearance are not the folk to be listening to.

I judge on kindness, on humour, loyalty, love.  The people I want around me are ones who are interesting, loving, awesome, funny, wonderful, caring.  And I don’t give a fuck what dress size they are.

 

Love Sam xxxx

When you're having a bad day…

You know those days where everything seems like hard work? When life is getting you down and everything is against you?

I’m sure you do because we all have those days. The ones where you need to crawl into a duvet cocoon and hide from the world, eat a whole tub of Ben and Jerrys and watch weepy films.

When you have a chronic illness these days can occur more often and it can be really hard not to let it all get on top of you and for it to be just too much.

I’ve had a few days like that recently. I’m still recovering from the jpouch surgery, though it was over a year ago, I was told it’s a 2 year recovery period and I’m still learning about my new body. I get days when it’s perfect! And then days where I am on the loo A LOT.

I’ve also been struggling emotionally and I think it’s because I am writing my book. Trawling through the memory banks and writing about my life, the illness, surgeries and my past is bringing up all kind of emotions. I often write with tears streaming down my face as I relive these events in order to share them. Don’t get me wrong, I’m over the moon at writing the book and I’m so excited but it’s really stirring up feelings.

When I’m down in the dumps, everything is tougher, life is heavier and the simplest of tasks seem overwhelming. I begin to doubt myself. That horrid little voice in my head starts to whisper mean things about me and it’s harder and harder to shoo it away.

And then I came across this image. It’s from a letter from Charles Darwin in 1861 to to his friend Charles Lyel. It comes from the American Philosophical Society and I found it on this blog

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“But I am very poorly today and very stupid and hate everybody and everything”

This letter was written two years AFTER he’d published ‘On the Origin of Species’. Two years after writing one of the most important books of our time, inspirational genius and all round game changer Darwin felt as stupid and pissed off as we all do on bad days!

If he were alive now I’m sure he would be in a duvet on the sofa watching Netflix too, watching marathons of Orange is the new black and cry singing to Les Mis.

It was just a great reminder for me that we all have bad days and that its ok to feel rubbish sometimes. That I need to have the bad day and then get back on the metaphorical horse and carry on.

There’s a great quote by Winston Churchill that says “If you’re going through hell, keep going!” I love that and tell myself it on those bad days. Because after a good old sulk, we need to buck up, put on our big girl pants and carry on.

The other option is to stay static in that hell which isn’t going to help anyone, especially yourself.

And so on my bad days, though I’ve learnt to accept them a little more, I will think of Darwin and his Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and if nothing else it will make me smile to know I am in good company.

Sam xx

A tin can or an ostomy bag – which would you choose?

Remember a few months ago I told you about a crowdfunding campaign for Stoma Aid run by the Colostomy Association to give someone a #BagforLife ?

Millions of people worldwide have a stoma, however, thousands of people with a stoma across the world are forced to use tin cans, carrier bags and bits of cloth because they are unable to afford the cost of a stoma bag. In Papua New Guinea there are only two stoma care nurses in the entire country: in the Philippines a single bag costs a week’s wages.

What is Stoma Aid?

Each month, tens of thousands of stoma bags are thrown away in the UK as they are no longer needed. We will collect these unused bags and distribute them to people in need in developing countries across the world.

Money raised with your help will help fund:
  • A dedicated staff-member to oversee and manage the Stoma Aid project as well as volunteers.
  • A warehouse where stoma bags can be collected and stored.
  • Education about stoma care in developing countries across the world.
The project is supported by the Colostomy Association – a national charity that supports people with a stoma throughout the UK.
Can you spare a few pounds today?  Your cash can help change this.  In the UK we are so lucky that we have the NHS to support and fund our bags, we don’t have to worry about it.  I can’t imagine having to choose between an ostomy bag and feeding my children, can you?
Even if you can’t give any money you can still help make Stoma Aid a reality.
  • Share our campaign on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media.
  • Tell your friends, families and colleagues about Stoma Aid.

Stoma Aid will change the lives of thousands of people across the world. Change someone’s life and give them a #BagOfLife.

 

Thanks

 

Sam xx

 

 

National Diversity Awards

I feel very privileged to have been nominated for an award at the National Diversity Awards for Role Model for disability.

I am totally overwhelmed and honoured that people have taken the time to vote for me.

Though I do this blog and raise awareness because I want to make a difference and help others, to be recognised for my efforts is really heartwarming.

Voting closes on June 21st and so please take the time to have a look through the nominees and vote for someone! Of course it would be lovely if that were for me, but having seen the other nominees I’m just happy to be put in the same categories as these wonderful folk.

Please do pop over and vote. It takes a couple of minutes.

Thank you!

Sam x

Pelican Healthcare Live Your Life roadshow – Birmingham

I’m thrilled to let you know that I will be at the Pelican Healthcare Live Your Life roadshow this Saturday in Birmingham.

From 10.00 until 3.00pm at Millichip Suite, West Bromwich Albion Football Club

The Hawthorns, West Bromwich, West Midlands, B71 4LF

I will be doing a talk in the morning and afternoon about self esteem, body confidence and ostomies.

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There will be tons of support and information and other interesting talks through the day.
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Feel free to drop by with your family and friends, anytime between 10am and 3pm. If you have any queries, or would like to confirm your attendance, you can contact us by:

Email – ku.oc1508660889.erac1508660889htlae1508660889hnaci1508660889lep@g1508660889nitek1508660889ram1508660889

Freephone – 0800 318 282

Register now to receive a free goody bag on entry!

I look forward to seeing you there! If you live too far away do check out the Pelican website for details of other roadshows.

Sam

Suicide Girls…

Devoted to changing your idea of what makes a lady beautiful… As long as you are thin and white?

So there’s this website called Suicide Girls, they’ve been going a few years but I rediscovered them on Instagram recently. Their tagline of being “devoted to changing your idea of what makes a lady beautiful” caught my eye and upon looking through I saw a variety pin up girls sporting tattoos and piercings.

I love tattoos. A lot. If I had more money, I’d be covered!! And so a site and social media portraying so called alternative women with ink and metal made me happy.

That slogan of changing ideas of beauty also appealed to me and so I hit follow, looking forward to some awesome women coming up in my Instagram feed.

And they do. But after a week, a bloody annoying pattern emerges. Yes, there are lots of beautiful, interesting and inked up women. But the HUUUUUUGE majority are both thin and white.

Ok, it’s great to promote tattooed women as beautiful, but thin white women don’t usually have that many issues being portrayed in the media. And as tats become commonplace in society, it’s really not that alternative.

So where are the bigger women? Where are the women of colour?

In the first 100 posts on the Instagram feed there are 6 women of colour.

And one woman who looks bigger than a size 10. And that post is filled with fat shaming comments.

What’s going on Suicide Girls? I love the idea of promoting an alternative view to traditional beauty, but surely you could bring yourself to show some larger ladies to your audience?

As the average size of women is around a UK 16, why don’t you show more average sized women?

Or does the idea of “what makes a lady beautiful” only apply to the thin white ones…

Though progress is being made with more and more plus size women as models and most recently the wonderful Tess Holliday I just wish we could see more of this.

What do you think?

Sam x