One of the best parts of building Wellacopia is the chance to meet members of the healthcare community who are also spending their days working to make connections and improve the lives of patients (a.k.a. seekers!). Today we’re talking to Amber Tresca, one half of the amazing duo behind IBDMoms about her journey and how IBDMoms got started.
How did IBD Moms get started? What is the mission of IBD Moms?
IBDMoms got started at Crohn’s and Colitis Congress in Las Vegas in 2018. Brooke Abbott of Crazy Creole Mommy Chronicles and I realized how many challenges we faced that were specific to being mothers living with IBD. We had been independently trying to support moms in the IBD space and realized that we really did need to dedicate more resources to helping moms find and encourage one another. The mission of IBDMoms is to strengthen the community of moms who are often forgotten within the IBD space.
What advice do you have for other moms who are dealing with a chronic illness?
There are so many moving parts to coping with a chronic illness while also caring for your children. Through it all, however, it’s important to have a great support network to lean on when necessary. Finding your tribe of other parents and creating a culture of support will go a long way towards alleviating a lot of the stress that comes about when issues with your chronic illness come up. The peace of mind you have, knowing someone has your back (and that you have theirs), can’t be underestimated.
What impact does the online community have on your life with chronic illness?
For me, the online community provides a source of understanding because there’s no one in my everyday life that’s like me. As I go through my challenges with motherhood, I’m able to give back what I’ve learned to the next generation of moms who are finding their way through these issues for the first time.
What is your favorite part of being an advocate for others living with chronic illness?
My favorite part has been in developing my podcast, About IBD, and in connecting one-on-one with others in the chronic illness space. When I can sit across the table from a patient, caregiver, or healthcare provider and gain access to their wisdom and experience with chronic illness in order to share it with the wider community, it is the most rewarding adventure I can imagine.
Looking back, what do you wish you had know when you were newly diagnosed?
I was diagnosed as a teenager so while I may have thought I knew everything at the time, I knew very little about how this disease would affect my life. I went forward and tried to fit in among healthy people without ever acknowledging that I perhaps needed to approach my life from a slightly different angle.
What impact does a good doctor-patient relationship have on your life with chronic illness?
A good doctor-patient relationship can never be underestimated. I am in contact with patients every day who struggle to receive the care they need and deserve because of a variety of issues in our healthcare system. A physician who has your back and who thinks about you when you’re not there in front of them is something I wish for every person who lives with chronic illness.
Thanks for sharing your journey and your expertise Amber! We love hearing from community members and leaders about how they ended up where they are!
Here’s where you can follow Amber and IBDMoms on social media: