My earlier post expressed my frustration about my frustratingly slow recovery, but didn’t include much in the way of details. So, to paint the full picture, here’s where things stand today…
I’ve been in near-constant—and occasionally intense—pain since my clinic appointment on Monday. The slow-healing incision around my stoma hurts. A lot. I can’t bend over. I can’t twist. It’s risky to walk my dogs (even one at a time), because an I-saw-a-squirrel jerk can painfully contort me. I can’t lay on my side. I can’t really lay on my back. It’s incredibly frustrating. I’ve had a couple organs removed, my abdomen sliced open three times, my small intestines stretched and removed from my body, but what’s keeping me couch-bound is a two-inch incision that doesn’t want to heal. My home nurse is coming today to take a look and change my appliance. I am somewhat fearful about what it will look like. Given the pain I’ve experienced, I see little chance of much healing. We’ll see later this morning, I suppose. Maybe I’m wrong (but I doubt it).
My back also hurts. All the time. It’s also the same lower back pain I experienced after the first surgery, though mercifully not quite as intense. I’m not sure what to make of it, and nothing I try seems to help. My most recent attempted remedy was to remove my ostomy belt. The only time I did not have the back pain was after my takedown surgery, when I wasn’t wearing the belt. At all other times, I was wearing the belt and in pain. Unfortunately, a 36-hour trial run resulted in no discernible improvement. In addition, the combination of a low-sitting stoma and use of an Eakin seal pretty much necessitates a belt to keep the appliance tight to the body and beneath the stoma. So back to the drawing board.
Finally, I’m still dealing with the J-Pouch mucus issue. Again, it’s mercifully not as bad as after my first surgery. But it’s bad enough to be extremely unpleasant. Last night, I was up a half-dozen times because I needed to release some mucus. But each time I tried, little or nothing happened, which inevitably led to a return trip to the bathroom a short time later. I didn’t fall asleep until 3am. It’s incredibly frustrating. And there’s no solution. None. At all.
It all could be worse, of course. But it’s bad enough. And the pain around my stoma incision is concerning. But today’s a new day. My nurse is coming. Maybe it will get better or we’ll figure something out.