'Bag Lady Mama,' aka Blogger Krystal Miller, Empowers Women By Sharing Her Experiences With Crohn's Disease & An Ileostomy Bag
Krystal Miller is a very special woman. She's a mom — but she's also a mom with Crohn's disease who relies on an ileostomy bag. That's not the special part, though; the special part is this: She's using her condition to empower women and encourage them to love and appreciate their bodies, no matter what. Miller, also known as the Bag Lady Mama, doesn't shy away from sharing her experiences, inviting her fans and followers along on her journey as she raises two beautiful kids.
Not everyone is familiar with this health condition, so here's a very brief rundown: Crohn's disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Most commonly, it affects the end of the small bowel and the start of the colon; but really, it can settle in anywhere between the mouth and anus.
When Miller was 22, she had her large intestine, part of her small intestine, and her anus removed. This is where the ileostomy bag comes into play. Doctors take the end of the small intestine and bring it out through an opening in the belly. This opening is called a "stoma." Basically, because you're no longer able to eliminate naturally, the ileostomy connects your insides to the outside. Through the stoma, your body is allowed to eliminate into a connected pouch that you wear at all times.
Miller has certainly squashed some hurdles and proven that even if you're carrying around an ileostomy bag, you can be or do anything. After doctors told her she wouldn't be able to have children vaginally, she did — twice. And she was recently accepted into nursing school — a step that will undoubtedly further her journey of helping people and bringing awareness to those in need of a voice and a support system. Just think: There was once a point when she was so sick that she couldn't brush her teeth without vomiting, sometimes sleeping up to 22 hours a day. In overcoming these sometimes horribly painful obstacles, Miller realized she wanted to become a voice for people with bowel diseases and bring awareness to what is largely an invisible condition. "Just because you don't look sick doesn't mean you're not," she told DailyMail.
This gorgeous "bag lady" is especially on a mission to remind women that they can still be beautiful and sexy and desirable... even with their bags. It's about loving yourself and being confident in your skin, regardless of what you've endured. Miller shares on her Facebook page about her challenging childhood, growing up so sick and actually homeless. And here's where she is now:
Crohn's is a mysterious and unfamiliar disease to many of us; and the surgical procedure Miller ended up having was undoubtedly life-changing. I think she's bringing an incredible voice to this experience, and empowering women who really need and deserve it. We tip our hats to you, Krystal Miller!