I’ve blathered on about my training and my fundraising, (updated 2013 link) but I feel like I haven’t really focused on why I am doing it again this year.

A few days ago, my mother wrote this on her page: “Donate Donate Donate. Help find a cure. I don’t like being a lab rat! (can’t wait to get off these meds) And come to Vegas if you can to cheer Kristie on!”

That struck a nerve with me. I know I  make jokes like “My Mom’s Guts Will Thank You” but in reality, I have watched my mom progress through Ulcerative Colitis from a distance. From missing her on family trips (to Disney, who misses trips to Disneyworld?) to hearing about how the transfusion room is decorated, it’s all just part of the disease.

Only during our brief visits to each other do I see the way UC has actually affected her. Sure, there are the bathroom breaks and diet changes, but there is also the weight loss and the fatigue. There is still a smile, but there’s something else there too. As someone who lives with endometriosis every freaking day of my life, maybe I recognize that smile from my own face. We are very much alike.

Her path through UC has not been pleasant. There have been many, many drugs, none of them doing what they promise–plus the side effects. There have been medical studies that just don’t fit. There have been some really bad moments. What it all comes down to is this: “Help find a cure. I don’t like being a lab rat! (can’t wait to get off these meds).”

I am fundraising through Team Challenge for CCFA because my mother shouldn’t have to live her life taking ridiculous amounts of medication, scheduling vacations around transfusions, planning everything based on available bathrooms, or even suffering with this horrible disease. I truly want there to be some breakthrough that will help her. I want the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation to not only support her as a member, but to continue to fund research that will cure her. In her lifetime. Not in my lifetime or my niece’s lifetime, but in her lifetime, so she can get back to enjoying herself!

So today, I ask you to donate not for me, but for my mom who doesn’t want to be a lab rat anymore! http://www.active.com/donate/vegasNWS13/kristie

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