15 Week Proctectomy Update And Summer Outfits With An Ileostomy. 

Hey Crohnies! 

Happy Sunday, I hope you’ve all had a fab weekend and I apologise for my super long break in my blog posts, I’ve done some posts to come out in the weeks ahead but since someone used one of my blog topics I discussed on twitter I’m not posting that for now and I’m working on diversifying that post a bit since, you know I don’t want to post the same content as another blogger… I have however learned my lesson and I will NOT be posting about blog topics as I write them anymore, this is my livelihood and I feel sad when my thoughts are pretty much copied word for word as it isn’t the first time this has happened. Sorry for the negative note on this but I feel I had to explain my lack of posts recently! 

Back to my actual point of this blog, I wanted to discuss my recovery from my proctectomy since I’m now almost 4 months post surgery! If any of you read my posts; What I’ve Learned Since Having A Proctectomy and my Post Surgery Complications, then you’ll know I had a fairly good start to the world of having a Barbie Bum with pretty good pain management and being mobile quite soon after surgery… however then I had my issues with my stitches coming out my ass and needing them surgically removed due to excessive swelling making them be basically under my skin then my front wound decided to open up completely and led to me needing daily packing and dressing changes from my wonderful district nurses.

It’s hard to believe it but all of the above happened within a 5 week period and slowly I’ve got much better since all of that drama! I had my front wound packed until week 12 then I just had plasters on for a few weeks and I’m now about 10 days free of any dressings on my tummy which is a really weird feeling since I have no feeling on or around my scar for a good inch of space and it makes for wearing clothes a very funny feeling. The worries about needing any kind of plastic surgery to help with the scar being less invasive are totally gone, my wound healed up crazily well and it is purely thanks to my amazing surgeon Graham who cut away skin and internal stitches since my body wasn’t healing right and also my nurses who were so tireless in their efforts every day to make sure I had the best care I could get while at home! This is what my tummy looks like now, I love my new belly button and my scar looks amazing, only a tiny bit wider than it would have been had it not dehissed and split open!

I love that my bag completely covers it!

I have had a very recent setback with my wound on my tooshy though… my wound healed up great after splitting when my stitches were removed and I was signed off from my nurses needing to check it and by my team of surgeons about 3/4 weeks ago. This was amazing news and meant I could bath freely and even managed to go swimming twice! 

I don’t let my scars or my bag or my stretch marks from previous steroid weight gain stop me enjoying myself by going swimming, I’m pretty proud of what I’ve come through and I see them as a way to raise awareness and also just make it easier to talk about with people, I love answering anyone’s questions if I notice them catching their attention on my tummy and it’s always great when you can help someone new know it’s nothing to be scared of and that it doesn’t make you have a horrible quality of life because you never know, themselves or someone they care about could be in my position one day and they might be able to ease their worries about life with a bag!

After my weeks of great butt health, I started to notice pain when I was sitting down again about 5 days ago, this was really surprising because I normally only ever get pain when I sit on a really hard surface like a floor but this was even happening on my couch or in bed and knew I had to go to the GP to get it checked out. Luckily I went when I did because my doctor discovered I now have 2 new weeping sores on my scar where it has opened back up and pus was leaking out which needed to be swabbed and sent away to be speciated at the lab because I have a pretty bad wound infection! This is really worrisome to someone like me who has been immunocomprimised and has also had sepsis because my infections can very quickly turn dangerous and require hospitalisation for IV antibiotics or surgery. I’m sadly now back needing my wound dressed daily with help from my amazing mum or amazing Boyfriend, Stuart with nurse visits every other day for them to dress it and check it’s progress alongside a heavy duty dose of Flucloxicillin until we find out which species of bacteria I have and get some more antibiotics to knock this out my system! I’m on antibiotics for the foreseeable future which kinda sucks because I always feel really sick on them but my pain is already getting much better after only 3 days.

I might have an infection but I still got to enjoy some sun!

Since I’ve discussed all about my actual wounds, I think it’s only fair I share my physical and emotional recovery too. I know many of you may have noticed I took a break from social media in march/april because I had been really depressed about being ill again and not able to do much for 9 weeks until I got some of my strength back from the surgery. It really is mentally challenging to go from being used to being in pain but able to function to an extent to literally needing to have your mum give you sponge baths and not even having the energy to change my own bag. As much as I have an amazing support system with my family and friends and IBD family and Stuart, I was struggling by feeling really alone because my antidepressants weren’t absorbing really well after the surgery and it took me a good month to realise that was what was going on. Now I’ve had my meds adjusted I feel so much better and more like myself which is great and mentally I’m in a far better place than I was these last few months! 

Having a great support system makes recovery much easier
Plus having such an amazing IBD family makes the bad and the good times so worth it!
Physically I found the recovery the hardest as I was unable to do anything at all for myself for weeks then had to really slowly walk little bits more each day and rely heavily on a wheelchair or scooter to get around. Having major surgery literally knocks the stuffing out of you so you really need a lot of care for the first couple of months but very slowly I’ve managed to get more and more well to the point I’ve managed to go out alone for the first time in 6 months, go to a friends wedding and one of my besties hen party, go on my first night out for my other besties birthday, go out for lunches, swim and walk my first 10,000 steps in a day! 

Fondue for 2 at Brel is alwaus amazing,especially when you get to catch up with your friend!
I honestly don’t know where I’d be without these girls!
The first night of drinking was so much fun with such great company!
It’s a long road but I’d definitely say I’m on the road to becoming healthier than I was in years. If I had to redo all of the surgery, complications and recovery again to feel this good just now, purely to know I don’t have anymore major surgeries planned in the future. Life is definitely getting better day by day! … did I mention I managed to complete a whole semester of university while going through the surgery? It was almost impossibly hard but with the fantastic support from the University of Strathclyde I not only completed it but I’ve already achieved some pretty great grades!

Having such supportive lexturers makes uni so much easier to deal with!

Oh, and I’ve also got a surprise to share with you all. Myself and Stuart have been invited to attend the queens garden party in July at Holyrood Castle! 

Okay so enough about my life update, here’s some of my favourite outfits of the past 15 weeks! 

New Look Emilee Jeggings are a post surgery must have at £22. I love a causal pair of Vans with a Boohoo White Tee and Primark Checked Shirt!
I loved this dress for going to my friends wedding. £40 from Missguided and it hides even a half full bag! My clutch was Topshop and Primark heels
This River Island distressed top is so comfy and cute, I love it most with mini buns in my hair!
This Straight Out Of Colon Tee is available on eBay at £10 from the seller Super_lemon
Primarks PJs are the best, they wash amazingly and they have the best designs… my Disney obsession grows!
This Brave Soul tea dress can be dressed up or down and is perfect for the warm muggy days with tights ornsunny days without!
Denim dresses are so on trend and this Primark one was only £10 and the babydoll design makes it so ostomy friendly! Plus it’s the softest denim ive ever felt so it is a great summer piece!
My top is Topshop from the sale in winter and was only around £10 but it washes like a dream, I leaked all over it and its like brand new after a wash! my cardi is H&M and my bag is New Look
This is my go to outfit for any occassion right now! My jumper is Cath Kidston x Disney and it is so beautifully made and my skater skirt was a Primark bargin from years ago I have always got on!
Last week I wore shorts for the first tome! they were from Boohoo £22 and i got a bigger size so they accommodated my 7lbs ive put on! My bodysuit is H&M and my hoodie is Primark
This is my bargain of the year, a Primark £10 playsuit which is so flattering and glides over my bag and scars completely disguisingn them and I’ve been asked SO much where I got it from, apparently it looks like a Urban Outfitters purchase!

If you’ve persevered with me this far then I really appreciate it! I hope you all have a fab day, I’m off out with my family to go to the Ideal Home Show in Glasgow, it’s our yearly tradition and I can’t wait! 

Jen x

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