My opinions on my surgeries have changed over time and I certainly don’t feel the same way about ostomies as I did 12 years ago. Why 12 years ago? Well that is when I went in for my first bowel surgery and at 21 years old I had no idea what a stoma was, let alone there was the chance of having one.
The surgeon I saw decided he could do the jpouch surgery in one fell swoop which give him his due he did do and I often think now but at what cost? My newly formed pouch wasn’t given a chance to heal by not having the ileostomy which would have been a temporary measure.
This popped up on my Facebook memories today and brought back a lot of vivid images of me not being ready to deal with the idea of having a stoma and getting angry and threatening to kill myself if I woke up with one. How my opinions on that have changed massively over the years.
Please excuse the language in the image but this I think shows the raw emotion I was filled with the day before my surgery. I never had an IBD or a stoma nurse and in fact didn’t think they were a thing. A nurse came in asked to see my stomach and started drawing circles on it and when I asked why she said it was possible stoma sites. I remember asking what a stoma was and she said it was a colostomy and showed me the bag. I wouldn’t have even been left with a colostomy since my entire large bowel was being removed.
If I knew now what I know now I would have probably told them to get out and find someone who had read my notes; sadly I can be stroppy at times but before surgery it is scary especially when you get people who only know basic information and nothing about you even though they have access to your notes. I also would have been less melodramatic about having a stoma and should have gone with the temporary stoma as I was left with more issues than I thought I would.
I really hope if or when I have my next surgery my opinions don’t change and I still love my little life saver like I do this one. It does make me think though that patient MSP might have had a different life altogether with this ostomy unlike his others. There are plenty of people in the ostomy community who have had multiple stomas and have had love/hate relationships with them.
Yes mine can be a pain sometimes; hence the possibilty of surgery but I am glad I begged for it to be formed and for it to be permenant as it really has improved the quality of life I have.