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It’s All Fun And Games Until Someone Gets An Ostomy - OstomyConnection

It’s All Fun And Games Until Someone Gets An Ostomy

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By Rourke Wolstenholme

I don’t have Crohns, nor do I have an Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Heck, I probably don’t even have Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I have endometriosis and I have an ostomy.

I presented to the hospital with a perforated bowel, underwent an emergency Hartmann’s procedure and woke from surgery wearing a colostomy bag, affectionately named Billy the Bag.

Here I am, two months post-op and one month back into the real world.

I still haven’t wrapped my head around what’s happened. In all honesty, I’d rather give someone a pedicure than discuss my feelings towards Billy. Day to day, I get on with it. I dress with the aim of disguising Billy and looking like my old self, whoever that was. I haven’t gone back to my office job yet but I’ve done a few in-home parties and am very lucky that I’m good at what I do, as that keeps me occupied and pays the bills.

All is well until I’m tired or my stoma nurse calls (but I love you!).

I can now switch from Sally Sunshine to Get the (bleep) Outta my face in less than a second, usually when I’m tired or I’ve had a long day. It’s like something in me snaps and I suddenly want nothing to do with anything. The sound of someone walking, breathing, a car door shutting, the radio, silence. It all irritates me to the point of frustrated tears. In these times, I have no idea what I want other than to be fast asleep floating on dreams. I never used to feel this way, but now I feel like this at least every other day. It isn’t me and it isn’t fun.

I haven't been able to lay on the bed in days due to the pain the drains caused, so I've been sleeping in the recliner.

I haven't been able to lay on the bed in days due to the pain the drains caused, so I've been sleeping in the recliner.

Bless my poor stoma nurse.

She has become my rock and the one person who seems to respect every aspect of my journey. Maybe that’s why I burst into tears almost every time we speak. I’m putting it down to the fact I hate talking about my stoma in detail, and that’s exactly what a stoma nurse wants to do. Ironic isn’t it. Since I left the hospital four weeks ago, I don’t think I can remember a day where I haven’t cried. I can’t even justify why I’m crying. I’ve been told it’s a grieving process. Maybe. It makes sense but it doesn’t seem to fit my tears. I think my tears are those of someone who is confused. I’m confused.

My whole life has been turned upside down.

I’ve gone from being busy to having a ton of free time, which can be incredibly intimidating. I don’t know who I am anymore. Is there any point becoming a new me with my reversal in a few months? Will I be the old me afterwards? I have a million questions that I can’t pinpoint nor answer. For now all I know is that I’ll get up every day, I’ll note three things that I’m grateful for, eat my milo, drink my coffee and wait for something to make sense.

Waking up feeling sick and wondering whether it's your stoma or if it would happen anyway and it's totally normal...

Waking up feeling sick and wondering whether it's your stoma or if it would happen anyway and it's totally normal...

This post originally appeared April 19, 2016 on Billy the Bag.