Meet Oliver! Oliver is 16, from the UK, and diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. He first received the diagnosis in January 2020 and in this past June, he underwent an ileostomy. The ileostomy removed part of his colon and ultimately saved his life.
Now, almost two months after the surgery, Oliver feels so much better and like he has gotten his life back.
Oliver has now found a passion to raise awareness for Ulcerative Colitis, a chronic, invisible illness that over 300,000 people in the UK are affected by. Through his journey, Oliver created a Facebook page and Instagram account that is documenting his journey while raising awareness.
He found that there are not as many people, especially in his age group, that are speaking out about having a stoma. He feels that this is due to the stigma that exists about stomas and living with a chronic, invisible illness.
Oliver was blown away by the amount of support he received after posting his first video on his social media accounts. Now, as he has become more comfortable with speaking out about his condition, he hopes to be able to inspire other young people in a way that he was inspired prior to his surgery. He says, “You can live a happy life and don’t be afraid to talk about it.”
For more from Oliver, check out his Facebook and Instagram: @thekidwithabag