My Ostomy & IBD Story

On the 9th April 2015 I was admitted into hospital with a severe flare up of my inflammatory bowel disease. When I say severe flare up, I’m talking going to the toilet over 20 times a day, loosing a lot of blood every time I went, feeling tired and sick and I was getting bad abdominal pains and not really wanting to eat (which is when you defiantly know I’m ill!)…it wasn’t very nice. They started me on an intense course of steroids (hydrocortazol to be exact) which didn’t help the flare at all…I just kept getting worse.

So, on the 14th April I was sent for a sigmoidoscopy which is where they send a camera up your bum and look at the lower part of your colon and ohmygoodness this was such an uncomfortable experience! Mainly because my colon was really inflamed and I didn’t like the feeling of the gas and air…lets just say me and pain meds don’t mix well and it makes my anxiety worse.

A day later two securicare nurses came to talk to me about the possibility of having surgery however nothing was really set in stone. They gave me lots of information and talked to my dad too and gave me the chance to let it all sink in.

It was the morning of the 16th April that the surgeon came and said “Yes, we’re going to remove your colon either this afternoon or tomorrow morning as we need to get it out of you pretty quick” and I freaked. I burst into tears as I hadn’t realised how urgent it was that it came out…I felt ill but I thought that what I felt was normal for someone with this condition. Luckily, one of the stoma nurses had come with the surgeon and she helped me so much and I rang my mum who came straight away too.

The night before surgery….once I’d stopped crying for a while!

Then it was surgery day. The 17th April is officially my stomaversery and let me tell you, it was the most terrifying day of my life. I was so scared of something going wrong in surgery and that I wouldn’t make it, or the anaesthetic wouldn’t work and I’d either wake up half way through surgery or they’d give me too much and I wouldn’t wake up at all. All in all, I was terrified. But it all worked out okay. I was woken up at around 3:30pm and after throwing up I was fine. I was on a morphine thing which I was in control of so I wasn’t in too much pain…I just hated how the morphine effected me mentally. It made me feel really anxious and on edge and just bleugh….put it did keep my pain at bay so I guess that was a good thing.

The next few days are kind of a bit of a blur…I was scared of eating at first in case I blocked my stoma and to be honest, I’m still scared now but I’m slowly realising that it’s just trial and error and if I get a blockage, it’ll hurt but it’s not going to be the end of the world. Plus, so long as I don’t eat whole nuts and sweet corn I shouldn’t have too many problems and I don’t like either of them so I guess that’s okay!

A whole eight days after surgery (and 15 days since been admitted) I was discharged from hospital and sent back into the real world which was kind of scary. So now I’m starting my recovery and coming to terms with everything which is happening. I can just about look at my stomas but I can’t say I love them! I’ve been to the doctors today (27th April) and I’m starting counselling as well as been referred for exercise at the gym once I’m well enough because I’ve lost so much weight and muscle…there’s literally nothing on me and I hate it!

I’m determined to get better and I’m not going to let this disease and my bag dictate my life; it’s not going to beat me!