It seems crazy that I’m already writing my one month post op post! Time has flown by and, in all honesty, I didn’t think I’d be feeling this okay so soon after having such a big operation. I have to say, I think part of the reason I’m feeling so well post op is that I was relatively healthy before going into surgery so my big tip for anyone having elective surgery, try to be as healthy as possible. I wasn’t well enough to do much exercise but I did try gentle stretching and tried to eat well. Okay, now on to how everything is healing etc…
Wounds on my stomach
So this is probably the main cause for concern at the moment. I currently have 5 wounds on my stomach; 3 which are from having the keyhole surgery (where they put the tools in), one where the wound drain was and one where my fiscula was. Only one of my wounds is 100% a okay at the moment which is the the keyhole near my belly button. The keyhole’s had glue on which came off about a week and a half after surgery. I have one keyhole just under my bag which had been absolutely fine until the other day I woke up and it was really sore and a little gooey. Luckily, I was at the doctors anyways getting my other wounds checked so I currently have an iodine patch on and hopefully it’ll heal up again soon! It’s in a really awkward place as it’s just below where the base of my bag is so it doesn’t get much air at all. My other keyhole, on my right side, had a scab which I managed to knock off yesterday. The wound wasn’t healed underneath and is now really sore as well so I’ve put an iodine patch on that too! My wound drain took some time to heal and for a while was a tad infected. The nurse used this felt which had silver and tree bark in and it is now healing beautifully! I don’t have to have a dressing on anymore and it’s nearly healed (I’m being super careful not to knock it like I did with the keyhole one!). The wound where my fiscula is is also being treated with a mix of the silver and iodine and is just taking it’s time to heal.
Having a barbie bum
Barbie bum (or barbie butt) is a term often used my ostomates after having this operation as you’ve had your bum sewn up. I thought that this would be the most difficult thing to get used to and that it was going to be painful. I’ve been really surprised at how okay it’s been. I had to sit on cushions for about two weeks and even now it can feel really itchy but 90% of the time I’ve felt fine. I’m still being really careful as to not stretch the stitches but I’ve even been able to sit on a pebble beach by the river and been absolutely fine! On a few occasions, I’ve experienced phantom bowel where I’ve had the feeling I needed to go to the toilet. It was so so strange but they’ve kind of passed now! Sometimes it feels really strange that I don’t have to run to the toilet anymore – it’s quite nice!
I’ve used hardly any pain relief since those first few days at home which, again, has really surprised me. I haven’t experienced any real pain where I’ve felt the need to reach for it in about two weeks. I have to say, I’m tempted to try some paracetamol today though because the two wounds which are playing up are really uncomfortable today.
Luckily my stoma wasn’t touched at all during this surgery so I’ve had no problems with it at all. I’m back to eating just about whatever I want and it’s as active as it used to be.
Something I’ve noticed since having the last of the disease being taken out of me is that my joint pain is almost gone. I couldn’t hold my phone some days and the almost content pain I had in my hands, knees and ankles has reduced significantly and I can move really well. I’m still getting pains in the small of my back but there’s been a lot going on around there and my body is still settling down. One thing which surgery does to women is completely knock your hormones so I still haven’t had a period since surgery.
My last operation actually triggered a small period two days later and then I didn’t have one for about 6/7 weeks. This time I didn’t have a period triggered so I’m kind of just waiting now. I’ve also noticed that I’ve started absorbing more from my food. I haven’t really been able to put weight on since I was 16/17. After my first surgery, I did a bit but since I’ve maintained an okay weight but I’ve noticed I’ve started to put more weight on in the past 4 weeks. It seems very strange and now I’m making sure I don’t eat too much shit seeing as I can’t exercise yet!
Like always, please don’t hesitate to ask any questions in the comments below!
If you’re going through ostomy surgery, keep an eye out for my new series; The Beginner’s Guide To Having A Stoma.