Girls should grow up normally. They should not have to spend their prepubescent years in and out of hospitals, drugged up, poked and prodded (in areas I won’t mention here), and depressed over the thought that one more thrice weekly blood test may send them over the edge. Well I did and I am a better woman for it. Since being diagnosed with Crohn’s disease at the age of 13, I have maintained a constant focus on good eating habits, staying in remission and forcing myself to stay healthy so I never have to take high doses of prednisone again. 14 years after my first flair up, I have lived happy and healthy, without medication or any severe flair ups.