Lately, it seems like every day is dedicated to something. Today, for example, I have learned that it is National Orange Wine Day, National Mad Hatter Day and National Noodle Day, to name a few. While I think National Days are fun (especially National Chocolate Day….need to look that one up), I want to tell you about a day that we are going to celebrate the heck out of around here. To add to the excitement, it is not a National Day, it is a WORLD Day. Today is World Ostomy Day 2018.
I must start by acknowledging that every day is Ostomy Day around here. Every Day. Even so, we are happy today is officially designated World Ostomy Day. It gives us a chance to help people learn more about ostomies and how wonderful they can be.
Ostomy surgery is a life saving surgery. It enables stool and urine to be eliminated from the body in a different way because of a malfunction or damage to the digestive or urinary system. There are so many things I could share about ostomies today and I just know that they would captivate you. However, in an effort to NOT put you to sleep, here is a graphic made by the United Ostomy Associations of America with some fun facts:
For those of you who know Zack and his ongoing intestinal struggles, you may be wondering how on earth we celebrate an ostomy. Well, sit right back and let me tell you. See this little guy? This is Zack without an ostomy. Look at his belly. Look at his face. Does that look like fun?
After being reconnected in Cincinnati and realizing we had major issues on our hands.
This is what “fun” looked like without an ostomy.
This is how he “played” – on the sofa, in small bursts.
Zack without an ostomy – in pain each and every day.
Zack’s colon without an ileostomy. If you are not an expert in reading x-rays, that dark s-like area taking up his abdomen? That is not normal. That ring in his lower pelvis? Those are staples from his anastomosis.
Sure, we still have lots of issues to deal with even with an ileostomy. Zack still has days where he does not feel well. He has different issues to deal with now and some are really tough, but he also good days. He can go to school, he can play outside, he can run, he learn karate and play tennis and swim and enjoy being a kid.
I asked Zack to pose for some pictures to show how strong he feels with his ostomy. These are the two he picked.
I wanted to take a picture of him in his black Stealth Belt. Zack set me straight. He said, “Mom, this is what my bag looks like. You can’t see it in the Stealth Belt.” He is right. He does not mind showing you what his bag looks like. It is a part of his body now. And, he will tell you, it helps him live. Happy World Ostomy Day!
Hug your babies!