I have been in Sydney for just over a week now and all is going well. Travelling with an ileostomy bag is a lot easier than travelling during a flare up of ulcerative colitis.
I’ve been swimming, snorkeling and dealt with 40 degree heat and my bag has been just fine! I was nervous about how sea water and high temperatures would affect the bag but there have been no problems so far.
I’m kind of feeling the pressure to be completely on top of everything as I don’t want my stoma to ruin our trip.
There are times where the heat gets to me and my skin is sore, I feel tired and dehydrated. My stomach gets quite swollen and I have had two occasions where I have felt like there was slight blockages. (For the record I no longer eat mushrooms, oranges and spring onions sliced lengthways!)
Today my daughter made me feel great. She said “I’d vote for you to be the best person ever because you only had a big operation a little while ago and you do everything with us, mum I think you’re really brave because you just do it all and you have a bag on your belly!” I gave her a massive hug and kiss, it was really lovely to hear her say something so sweet!!!
There has only been one time where it got a bit much, I had a blockage and felt quite poorly – I had to have an hour laying down till it passed. I felt bad for this but I needed a little time.
I’m determined that the kids will have an amazing time and that my stoma won’t stop us doing anything.
We are having such a great time, I can’t believe how beautiful it is here. We are loving Australia!
Clothes haven’t been too much of a worry though occasionally I’ve struggled with getting longer vests to wear with shorts. With swim wear I decided against a special ostomy swimming costume as I couldn’t find one i liked, so I wear my normal swim wear. Either costume or bikini!
Wearing the bikini means I do get the odd stare, mainly from other children which I accept with a smile. It’s normal for them to be curious and want to look and hopefully the more they see things like this the more normal or becomes for other people. I have had one man openly stare with a disgusted look on his face, I thought he was going to fall over he was so enthralled with my bag!! At first I felt embarrassed and a bit upset but that lasted only a second before I felt annoyed. Really adults should know better, but I won’t let a few nasty stares put me off wearing my bag proudly!!
Here’s a few photos of our time in Australia so far.
Love Sam xxx