An inspirational and hardworking mother of 3, Heather is passionate about making a difference in the lives of others. When she isn’t spending her time traveling or on the benches at her kids sports games, Heather is pulling inspiration from herself and pouring it into Heather’s Mission IBD Support and Awareness, Inc.
After being diagnosed at age 40 with an aggressive, environmental case of ulcerative colitis in 2011, Heather decided to dedicate her time to helping others who have struggled with the disease, as she knew firsthand just how devastating this disease is and the effects it has on those that suffer from it. Her diagnosis came almost immediately after a trip to the Mayo Clinic where she presented with severe symptoms like diarrhea, blood in the stool, severe pain, and a loss of control of bowel movements that made it hard for her to ever leave the house. Heather changed her diet and lifestyle, trying to do anything that she could to get a grasp on what her life had become: countless hours of self-research and time spent in doctors offices, hoping for the solution. In 2014, after trial and error of so many different treatments and drugs that never offered the relief she needed, Heathers condition started to drastically deteriorate and she was checked in to the Mayo Clinic for an entire month. When her colon had completely stopped working and her last colonoscopy came back with pre-cancerous cells, Heather turned to the “JPouch” surgery as her last resort. The “JPouch” is a 3 step, 9 month procedure that removed the entirety of her colon and re-routed the intestines to a pouch, and although the process is not easy, it can relieve symptoms and is a great option for many that are suffering with ulcerative colitis.
Heather’s story is not a rare happening, her experiences are a very real reality for many people suffering with ulcerative colitis, and it can be exhausting when you feel as though you are going through it all alone. Heather had always wished that she had someone that could relate to her struggles and truly understand the mental and physical pain that ulcerative colitis has on its victims. This inspired Heathers Mission IBD Support and Awareness, Inc., an Arizona-based non-profit organization committed to supporting the patients and families that are battling ulcerative colitis and crohn’s disease. Her main goal is to support, raise money and help find a cure for this chronic illness that affects the lives of millions every single year.
Mesa, AZ 85203