It seems like every day is a learning experience when it comes to my ostomy. Granted I have only had mine for a little over 7 months, so everything new that I do is a learning experience. From travel to everyday life, this thing sucks. I must always make sure I have my travel pack of extra supplies just in case something happens. Don’t get me started on airport security, that’s a story in itself. AND THE CONSTANT ITCHING!!! OH MY GOD does it itch!!! When I do remove the stick-on wafer from my skin and I am able to scratch the itch…my O-Face gets plastered on, I think you get what I saying.
Now, unless you are the kind of person that likes to stop every hour to hour & ½, long car trips have now turned into LONGER ones. I guess I could cut back on the amount of water I drink. I could put on the leg extension that attaches to my urostomy bag allowing for it to hold more “fluid” (I have yet to try this one). I could carry around an empty bottle with a lid; use your imagination for that one. I could also use the night time bag that I have to hookup every night and sleep with. Yes, the joy of having a hose hooked to your ostomy that leads to the floor where a larger bag can fill so that I don’t bust my normal bag and get “fluid” everywhere. You get my point.
Also, if you are the kind of person that sweats, I mean at all, this thing is not for you. Wait, I sweat, great!!! Let me give you an example. For instance, I can take a shower in the morning and put a new setup on, if it is a hot day and I go for a long walk or workout, chances are it is going to need to be replaced that evening or the next day. Now that doesn’t sound all that bad, right? Well, let’s look at this closer. My insurance only covers 10 urostomy sets per month. Therefore, if I change them out every 3 to 5 days I’m good. What about if I like to workout, go for a bike ride, have a life? In come these amazing elastic barrier strips that stick really well. Sounds great, right? Not so much! I have to “man up” in order to remove them because they take multiple layers of skin along with them. But hey, they do allow for the urostomy set up to last a little longer; your welcome insurance.
I didn’t intend on this turning into a vent session. I truly am thankful for still being able to do the things I can. In the big picture, this is just something that has to become second nature. It will eventually be like brushing my teeth, OK, bad example considering. My point is this, even though having a urostomy sucks, I can still live life. I can play golf with my son, be physically active, travel, I can do pretty much everything I could before this go around with cancer. I just have a couple of added steps in there now that I was not used to before. While no one said it was going to be easy, they did say I’m alive. To me, the “cost” of this thing suddenly becomes worth it.