My journey with F.A.P. begin in the winter of 2007. I knew well before then that there was a possibility I could have it. My dad was diagnosed 20 years prior and after genetic testing it was confirmed that I had this awful disease. 

From that day forward my life changed forever. After being diagnosed I was scheduled for scopes once a year. When I went for my scope in the winter of 2011 it wasn’t good. At age 14 my colon was covered with thousands of polyps. My doctor immediately set me up with a surgeon to have a complete colectomy. At the time it was very overwhelming.

I was a typical kid in junior high that was living life like a normal junior high kid should. It was a big shock to everyone I knew. I was feeling many emotions. I was feeling sad, angry, worried, and discouraged. I was sad that I had to go through this. A kid my age shouldn’t have to. I was angry that my dad and I were dealt this disease. A family like ours shouldn’t have to go through something like this, but we had no choice but to deal with it. I was worried about what was going to happen. I was only 13 years old at the time, I didn’t know what was going on or what to expect. I was really discouraged because I knew after my surgery I wasn’t going to be able to do the things I did before with my friends and family.

After my surgery on June 8th, 2011 it was a very difficult time. I did not leave the house one day that summer. My spirits were down because I wasn’t like any of my friends, they were all doing things a teenager should do and there I was with a colostomy bag in my house. I had very few friends that summer. They all left me because I wasn’t “normal” to them and I couldn’t do anything.

After my reversal in August they all came back. Ever since that summer my life with this disease has turned around. I have a J-Pouch and have had no problems since. F.A.P. is not an easy disease to deal with but my family and I find ways to get through.

My advice to all F.A.P. survivors is take life day by day and live life to the fullest. Don’t let the disease define you.