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Remarkable moms are removing barriers to research through their advocacy

This article is featured in full length on the blog, Mamas Facing Forward.

Moms can be the fiercest of patient advocates, for themselves and especially their children. Maybe it’s the “mama bear,” protective instinct that kicks into hyperdrive? Or maybe there’s some truth to the stereotype that they’re superior multi-taskers?

Or maybe, they don’t have much choice, and they are forced to adapt. Chronic illness warriors are well versed in maneuvering around the unpredictable, the inconvenient, and the downright unfair hurdles that pop up in their disease. As moms, they use those skills to roll with the punches. More than that, they’re ruthlessly efficient. They’re practically psychic when it comes to planning and militant about organization. That’s what makes moms the fiercest advocates.

Read the full article on Mamas Facing Forward. ... Mamas Facing Forward is a blog for moms and moms-to-be who are living with chronic illnesses and have questions or concerns about pregnancy and motherhood.

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Desiree is a quadruple Autoimmune Warrior: rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto's disease, endometriosis, and fibromyalgia. Each condition complicated her diagnostic journey, which inspired her to become a certified functional health coach.

I've been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto's disease, endometriosis, and fibromyalgia.

Since I was 14 years old, I suffered from joint pain but it wasn't until 2020 that I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's thyroiditis. And in 2021, I received the diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis.

I spent many years suffering, taking Tylenol and ibuprofen, and going from doctor to doctor, just to be dismissed or told I have allergies. All the while, my symptoms got worse.

My diagnoses helped me realize that I was not the only one suffering in silence. I wanted to spread awareness about autoimmune diseases, so I became an ImYoo champion. Progress is impossible without change.

Donate to rheumatoid arthritis research.

Listen to our interview with Desiree on her podcast, Stronger than Autoimmune.

Desiree Werland is a certified functional health coach. Learn more by visiting or following her Instagram, @desiree_werland.

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It took Ashley 6 years of pain to finally reach her rheumatoid arthritis diagnosis. Now she is a body builder, a fitness coach, and a #spoonieforscience

I started experiencing symptoms at age 21 and went to urgent care for treatment as I had no medical insurance. They told me to take Tylenol or Aleve and I did for 6 years.

When I was finally diagnosed, I had severe joint damage in my wrists. After a few failed medication attempts and a lupus diagnosis, my doc finally found something that worked.

I became a champion with ImYoo because I want to be a part of the change that I want to see for our spoonie community. Getting a diagnosis and finding the right medication shouldn’t take so long. The work that ImYoo is doing will change many lives.

Donate to rheumatoid arthritis research.

Ashley Davis is a body builder and fitness coach. Learn more about her autoimmune-friendly fitness program, RA Warrior Fitness.

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