I'm still a pretty new ostomate, so naturally the question comes to mind (especially when running into old and meeting new friends)- How Much Should I Tell?
I mean, how much is too much? How do I tell what is pertinent without causing them to clutch their pearls in horror? There is definitely a fine line that is drawn concerning this topic and I'm so new to this that I don't even know where this so-called "line" even is! My initial thought was tell everyone, and those who mattered would be the ones who were completely unfazed by my news. I then started to put this plan into action and soon afterwards realized that the reaction I was getting from some wasn't exactly the desired one...so in other words, it worked :-)
How exactly do I tell my friends (or distant relatives) that I no longer have Crohn's BBBUTT (I throw in the stuttered "bbbutt" before they break out in the ultimate 'praise dance') I, um, have an ostomy now? And where exactly do we have this conversation? Over dinner? "Hey, I don't have a rectum, can you please pass the peas." Yes, I jest, but there is so much truth in this. I just don't know how to express how my ileostomy has changed my life..but it has. For the better.
The absolute beautiful part is that: If I didn't tell you that I have an ileostomy, there's no way you would know (provided that I keep it drained...otherwise it's pooch city). I still wear cute, form-fitting clothes that highlight the really nice womanly curves that I now sport.
I'm excited about the opportunity to spread awareness about Crohn's Disease and all types of ostomies to people that (like me 5 short months ago) just don't know. If you're in a position where you're hiding something physical about yourself because you're just not sure what the response will be...Believe me, "those who matter won't mind"..not even a little bit. For those that wig out, eh, who needs'em anyway?!? Your physical flaws are beautiful because you are beautiful...and unique in every way!