I am so honored to be nominated! I have battled Crohn's disease since I was 18 so this is year 31 for me and I'm still in the fight. Along the way I have picked up the diagnoses of fibromyalgia and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome as well as chronic pain, chronic fatigue, and many other "fun" side effects that come with chronic illness. I share about my health issues nearly daily on social media, and talk and write about what's working, what doesn't, and the truth about how I feel and what life looks like through my eyes because I want others to be aware for the sake of the chronically ill and for the chronically ill to have a voice. I also am a survivor of domestic violence and sexual assault and am vocal to encourage others in that same walk. We are strong. We are survivors. When we speak out, it empowers others to do the same and also helps others feel they have community and support in their struggle. You are not alone. You are in good company and I can't wait to encourage you!
I connect with her due to have similar diagnosis. I have also learned a lot about what she stands up for and the things that have happened to her. She advocates daily for a variety of things from chronic illness to sexual assault. She is there for so many people and continues to raise awareness. — Abby
Melanie has overcome MANY chronic illnesses including Crohn's disease, fibromyalgia and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome as well as chronic pain, and chronic fatigue. She still keeps a positive attitude and inspires others! — Lisa
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