As Elvis would’ve said, a little more conversation …

Sarah Mills - ElvisJust tripped across an article in the UK’s Daily Mail about Sarah Mills, a 36-year old woman from Kent. After surviving stage 3 colon cancer, Sarah wanted to celebrate her ostomy bag and help break the stigma about them. She accomplished both goals beautifully by sharing these images of herself on Instagram, in support of Stand Up to Cancer, a UK fundraising campaign that’s apparently raised more than £62 million to fund clinical trials and research projects, including research into bowel cancer.

Sarah was quoted as saying “I’m very happy to talk about bums and poo – it kind of came naturally anyway after all the conversations I’ve had with doctors, who are very open and upfront about these things.”

It reminded me how important it is to encourage conversations about ostomies. Someone in a Facebook group recently posted about being out with a friend. He mentioned his ostomy. A man at the next table overheard and said “Hey, I’ve got one too!” They chatted happily, swapping stories. It’s surprising how many of us are out there and we don’t realize it till it comes up naturally in conversation. Or articles like the one about Sarah spark conversations and demonstrate that people with ostomies can still experience joys and triumphs, and inspire others, no matter what their circumstances.

Some of Sarah’s pictures, taken by photographer Veronika Marx, appear below. They recreate famous celebrity photos. LOVE them, right? Big shout-out to Sarah Mills!

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