I still carry the weight of my past, living with a chronic disease. I really do. In a bag. In silence. Scars. Safely hidden. Behind my clothes. Behind my smile.
Believe me when I tell you I will never ever regret the life changing decision of getting an ileostomy. It’s a relief after 20 years of coping with ulcerative colitis. The hope in times of remission. The disappointment in times of flare-ups. Depending on others. Not willing to give up. Refusing to give in. Promising treatments. Failed treatments. Unspoken side-effects. A never ending struggle. Physically. Emotionally.
On the other hand, it is just what it is. An ileostomy. The surgery that finally saved me from an autoimmune disease. Nothing more. Nothing less. No colon. Still rollin.
When you find me suddenly somewhere just with a smile on my face and my head held high? Unfortunately it’s not only glitter and glamour. That’s an assumption. Avoiding the confrontation within our conversation. Somehow a way to protect our comfortzones. Yours. And mine.
Honestly? My bag has been liberating in so many ways and at the same time it’s still frightening me as well. All of a sudden. Somehow. Sometimes. That’s reallity. Carrying the past in a bag, looking towards a future of living life to the fullest. Weakness and strenght united.