Climbing the Ladder of Life
Living with Crohn's Disease

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Shannon on October 13, 2017 at 6:24 AM said:

What an inspiration you are Nichola!
You have had to overcome so much
in your life but you continue to have a
happy disposition & such a positive outlook.

Congratulations to you for writing your
Second book . You are giving such
hope, support & encouragement to other
people suffering from Crohn's disease.

I wish you wellness & every happiness
For the future. You are such a
Beautiful person & deserve nothing less .
God Bless you xx
Colleen Palmer on October 6, 2017 at 10:29 PM said:

I was introduced to Nicola by a friend in Nelson NZ. My friend gave me her details so I could phone Nichola when I was holidaying on the Gold Coast. I had already read her first book and found it to be very inspirational and a great help for me. I had a illiostomy 2 years ago after suffering from bowel problems for years. I enjoyed talking to her and found her positivity was amazing.
Iam looking forward to receiving a copy of her second book next year and will certainly keep in touch with her - SUCH AN AMAZING LADY.
Grant Navin on March 22, 2015 at 10:39 PM said:

My name is Grant Navin and I am the owner of freewayreps, a photography management and production company.

Nichola and I worked together on a print campaign for Crohn's disease in February 2013.
Myself, my photographer, Art Director and assistant followed Nichola and Winston around for three days visually documenting her day to day life living with the disease.

It was such a deeply touching shoot for myself and the crew who, in the most part are used to advertising shoots with their timelines and clients needs. All there to essentially sell a product that people may or may not need.
This shoot was something very different.

Nichola is a cheeky girl who is brave and vulnerable at once. A surviver who loves a dirty joke and a good belly laugh. She gets knocked down and continues to get up and keep going.
We were all so moved by her story, her openness and her strength.

We have continued staying in contact with each other through the various forms of social media - she "likes" our recent work on Facebook and sends through pics of the new puppy Boomer.

I look forward to the new book and wish Nichola and Boomer all the best, continued wellness and laughter always.

Grant Navin
Debra Gilbertson RN on March 9, 2010 at 2:55 PM said:

This is an insightful, honest,thought provoking book of Nichola's life journey which highlights her determination to get the most out of life, despite illness and numerous surgeries. A great read for those living with Crohns and stomas and for their carers and loved ones. Well done Nichola - keep climbing that ladder of life!
Anonymous on September 2, 2009 at 5:10 AM said:

I first heard about Nicky through my mum reading thats life a couple of years ago. I put off reading this book because I thought it would be too confronting for me as a Crohn's patient also. Two years later after hearing how much her book has helped and inspired others, I have a copy on its way to my door and am looking forward to reading it. Nicky thanks for being a source of contact and inspiration to others, will let you know when my reading is done.
Damian Watson on May 12, 2009 at 7:42 PM said:

Hi Nichola

What an amazing story. You have been through so much but still project such a strong positive attitude. You are a great example for other Crohn’s sufferers out there.
Andrew Carswell, Hobart, Tasmania on April 7, 2009 at 8:16 PM said:

I first met Nicky through a mutual friend Janine in the early 90’s; we all lived in a complex on the Gold Coast called Sun Village; Sin Village we called it, and for us to a large degree it was. We were all young and determined to enjoy ourselves. Nicky seemed determined to have fun at whatever cost and at times she seemed to be in self destruct mode. Back then I only knew the parts of Nicky’s life that she was willing to share, so I didn’t know how deeply the passing of her Mum continued to affect her and I hadn’t heard of Chrohn’s Disease or that Nicky had been diagnosed with it. I certainly didn’t understand or appreciate back then that both of these were influencing how Nicky lived her life. I guess it would be fair to say that our friendship at that time was a happy but superficial one.
As our friendship grew I became aware of the deeper, more intimate parts of Nicky’s life and I developed a profound appreciation of who she really is. Her inner qualities give her the strength, courage and determination to keep going through so much adversity and at the same time reach out to others who are in need. I’ve seen her battle the debilitating effects that Chrohn’s had on her life in the early days and though there were tears and moments when it seemed like it was all too much, Nicky always found a way to be as happy as she could and to live as normal a life as possible.
I haven’t seen Nicky for many years now but she has never been too far from my thoughts. I hope her book serves as a message of hope to fellow suffers of Chrohn’s and other serious illnesses, and as an inspiration to the rest of us who may let life’s trials and tribulation at times get the better of us, to focus on the things that really matter.
Congratulations on the publishing of your book Nicky; I’m proud to be your friend
Sonja Todd NZ on March 15, 2009 at 12:56 AM said:

What an amazing journey you have been on Nicky....your inner strength will be an inspiration to others who have Crohn's Disease....
Be safe and healthy as you continue Climbing the Ladder....
Paul Matsukis on January 4, 2009 at 6:59 PM said:

I have had the pleasure of knowing Nicky both professionally and socially. She is an inspiration and positive role model to the people that come into her life, and now with this book can reach others with whom she will never meet. Nicky continues to grow both personally and professionally and hopefully will continue to write further books that will in my opinion greatly assist not only Crohn's Disease sufferers, their support team, but others who want to benefit from her life experiences to enhance their own.
sandra Phillips (NZ) on October 10, 2008 at 10:32 PM said:

Nicky well done your book is an inspiration to anyone who reads it, you will have helped so many people,I really enjoyed reading your book, your inner strength and courage is amazing, and yet you still smile and have a postive out look on life.Your mum would have been so proud of you today, her beautiful daughter writing a book which is well written and helps others.
You will be a very successful counsellor. Take care .
Sandra Phillips(NZ)
Heidi Basedow on August 4, 2008 at 2:01 AM said:

I have known Nicky for many years, but have got to know nicky better in the last 5 years, we have become great friends. I had the great pleasure of reading her story, it was truly amazing lots of tears and laughs, as i can now relate to some of her stories especially the men ones.
Nicky now is flatting with me, i think it has been the best timing for both of us, lots of laughs and the best conversation. Nicky is someone that all of us should try to aspire to, she has a heart of gold, never judges, great listener, and gives great advice. Nicky will be one great counsellor.... Look out when she is qualified, we will all have to start paying for her advice and support he he.
Nicky always has a positive outlook on life, always looks amazing even when she is sick.
Hope you get to the top of the ladder soon with all the dreams you have planned. I will help you get that dream man, as you know i love to shop. x x
Donna Hazelwood on July 12, 2008 at 11:14 PM said:

I enjoyed reading your book.

It is good to hear even though you have been through so much you still have a positive outlook on life.

Thank you for sharing your story.
NERIDA MARSHALL on July 6, 2008 at 4:18 AM said:

Many of us expect good health as our right and often take our families for granted because they have always been with us. But once you have read this uncompromisingly honest book by Nichola you will rejoice in every day you are feeling well. You will want to draw your family close and hug them all. Nichola shares with us her journey through pain, depression and suffering, not for sympathy, but to help others find the strength to survive and flourish. Thank you, Nichola, for rekindling my appreciation for my own family support system. You are a shining spirit whose incredible honesty will be a lifeline to many people. I believe that your wonderful Winston has come into your life especially to help keep you positive as you continue in your quest to counsel other suffers and of course give you lots of love!
Aaron John Beth'el on April 30, 2008 at 5:47 AM said:

I have known Nicky for the past couple of years as we have studied and done group work together as fellow students of a diploma in counselling. What struck me when I first met her was her infectious laughter and smile, along with a great sense of humour which was a mixture of literal, lateral and naughty. Quite a while after meeting, we swapped books; she read mine and I read hers. I really didn't know anything about Crohns disease, until I read Nicky's book. And I had absolutely no idea what she had been through in her life until I read the autobiographical account of her life in "Climbing the ladder of life." Nicky's book touched me deeply. Her down to earth explanation of her early family-oriented life, continued in the same fashion after her discovery of Crohns and the many consequent operations and challenges she resolutely faced. Nicky's a strong willed survivor, and she has done so with a grace and a cheerful disposition that made me look at my own minor but self-inflated problems in a much more realistic way. Her book is an inspiration to everyone, not just those suffering from Crohns disease. Yet for those who do suffer from it, Nicky's book lights a lamp which steadfastly shows a way through it all. She has a big heart, and is not afraid to reveal it in these pages. Bravo. There are not many books that bring tears to my eyes. For anyone to go through what Nicky has been through with so many operations and adjustments to life, well its massive, her ladder reminds me of a set of stairs I once came across in the Himalayas...I was told it was a short cut to the top of a mountain (which it was) but it was a kilometre of large vertical stone steps, that almost devoured me. In my eyes Nicky stands tall and cheerfully on the top of her ladder, its her version of Everest. love Aaron
Debbie Pearce - Oamaru NZ on April 17, 2008 at 12:43 AM said:

What a truely amazing book, upon receiving the book it was read from start to finish, without being put down. I have been very lucky to have become friends with Nicola not long after having had surgery in 1996, she was an incredible person to have had around as i got crohns for only 4 months before surgery, there was alot she taught me, and i will be forever grateful as it made the transition to this very different way of life so much easier. Nicola also gave me the confidence to help others and not to be ashamed of what i had, to this end I now have people who are asking me questions before they have surgery, now that i have Nicola's book to share with them, i am sure she will touch their hearts as much as she touched mine and to be that special angel in their back pocket, lots of love to you, you are one of a kind....
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