Happy ITP Awareness Month!!
September is finally here! For most it’s a time for heading back to school or work. The holidays are over and it’s time to get back to business. So far this month has been incredibly busy for me, and it seems like there is still a lot more to come…
This month I have made it my mission to create awareness, knowledge and raise money for ITP. At work we are holding a charity event to raise money for the ITP Support Association. The event is called ‘Sea-to-Sea for ITP.’ Basically, I and my work colleagues will be biking 140 miles, which is the equivalent distance of biking from the West to the East of England. We will be completing the ride in front of the shop on an exercise bike. So far, there are a lot of interested customers. I enjoy talking about ITP although sometimes it makes me feel uncomfortable when people ask questions and give me sympathy: I don’t want people to view me as the ‘sick’ girl. All I want is to make people aware.
I was scrolling down my newsfeed on Facebook a couple of weeks ago and came across an awareness video for Breast Cancer. It really hit a nerve for me! I wasn’t sure if I was disappointed, or jealous or sad. Part of me wished that ITP had the kind of awareness that other diseases and illnesses do. But, because it is rare, and only fatal in extreme circumstances, it doesn’t get much coverage or a second look. My mind went into over drive and I started to get angry. There are people I speak to on a regular basis that are having a really tough time finding a treatment that raises there count, there are some that are finding it really hard to pick themselves up and carry on fighting, and others that just wish they had more people that understood them. The thing about having a rare disorder is that it can be very lonely. Most people with ITP have never met anyone else with the disorder. There are no support meetings, or frequent events, and very few places to meet other sufferers. When you first mention ITP to a person they have no idea what you are talking about. After ranting to myself for hours and getting myself into a bit of a huff, I decided I was going to do something about it.
I decided to create my own ITP Awareness Video in the hope that it would help create awareness, knowledge and understanding. I sat down after work that day and started writing a ’script’ as such, to show the kind of content I was going to put into the video. I sent it to a close friend with ITP and they had the brilliant idea of contacting more fellow ‘ITPers’ to see if they would also like to be in the video. Hopefully it would help people with ITP gain comfort in knowing there were people out there who understood what they were going through. The next day I set to work on contacting as many people I could find with ITP, through Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Thank God for social media! The response I received was overwhelming. There were so many people out there that were willing and eager to help in any way that they could.
After weeks of patiently waiting, watching and re-watching, editing and re-editing the video, I finally completed it. 3 days ago it went online and it has already reached over 600 people. The response has been amazing! I could not be happier knowing that people are watching, learning and understanding what the letters ‘ITP’ stand for! Since starting the video I have been in touch with the local newspaper and radio stations and they seem very interested in hearing my story. I have an interview with ‘YorkMix’ tomorrow which I am very excited for. Hopefully the awareness will continue to grow over the coming weeks. It is an amazing feeling to know that I am doing a good thing and having an impact (even if very small) impact on the ITP Community.
Please feel free to watch the video and share it with all of your friends and family. Simply click here.
I’ll defiantly be back to update you all soon, there lots of very exciting things I have in store that I can’t wait to share with you all.
Love Katie xxx