Just call me Elmer...

First of all can I just start this blog by thanking you for turning up and reading it. I really want you to know I appreciate your visit. I just hope you get something from my experiences, I may not be confident in myself but I am strangely confident and comfortable with colostomy life and I think it’s worth sharing the positivity. 

Thank you for coming. 

Suzanne. xx

Another fun packed weekend. Our friend Di is turning 50 in September and her hub’s had his birthday in May, it’s often a struggle to know what to get people, especially grown ups that can buy themselves anything they want anyway.  So either Chris or I came up with an incredibly good idea...I think it was Chris but I might as well try and take some of the credit. Hahahahaha  

A mornings shooting for the four of us. It’s something none of us usually do and a bit of fun to boot. 

It was fantastic, even though I’m absolutely hopeless one minute and spot on the next, consistency is not my strong suit when it comes to shooting. It’s still a lot of fun. I lack a competitive nature for all sports (quiz nights I play to win, everything else I’m not bothered by). 

Having a Stoma has never stopped me doing anything I want to do. And I’m sure I’d be perfectly capable, stoma wise of doing anything I don’t want to do too!

Last time I went shooting I did struggle with my hernia but since I’ve changed my diet I’m having less trouble with that anyway. And even if it had angered it - So what? It’d be worth a gut ache anyway.  

If you have a hernia belt it’d be the ideal time to wear it. I still haven’t got round to ordering one yet, I barely remember to order my normal supplies as it is. People often say how can you forget to order them? Well I literally don’t think any differently to how I did before my op, I see myself as no different apart from stronger and bolder maybe. I forget I have a stoma. That’s not me in denial, it just plays such little importance in who I am and what I do that I forget I have it. I am me, I just happen to poop in a bag. 

However, that does not mean I’m completely insensitive to those that do find this journey difficult or a struggle. I think that would be such an awful place to be in, and I hope you find peace with it very soon. I get it, it’s not necessarily pleasant, it isn’t always easy (sometimes it’s down right embarrassing) and it’s not what you expected from life. But I’m just so happy to be alive, happy to have landed in the life I have, I don’t notice what could be seen as a potentially negative situation.  

I follow so many incredible women on Instagram that my bag pales into insignificance. There are girls getting out there and showing the world that they are beautiful, incredible and inspirational, despite life changing spinal inuries, amputations, disfigurement or terminal cancer. 

The hand I’ve been given is not so bad, I like the handiness of some of the changes in a lot of ways, weird as that may sound. I am at peace with myself, those painful teenage angst years, lack of body confidence and food issues long gone, safely ensconced in the past. I turned into a butterfly (or possibly a moth hahahahaha) but the most important thing is I’m no longer a caterpillar. I am at peace with being me and that’s worth more than all the riches in the world. 

I heard a saying once that went something along the line of “If everyone in the world threw their problems in the air, you’d be glad that you caught your own” 

It’s very true that no matter what you’re going through there will always be someone worse off. It’s very freeing to think like that, to remind ourselves to enjoy every single second because the next one isn’t guaranteed. 

 

*I just want to make it clear that no animals -feathered or fluffy were harmed in the making of this day out. A number of clays were wiped out but that’s it.   :) 

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Top from Reiss, Jeans from Topshop, Shoes -  Yeezy's.  

 If you go down to the woods today you’re sure for a big surprise...

If you go down to the woods today you’re sure for a big surprise...

 ...a Suzy with a 28...awwwww, if only I had used an Uzi. Hahahahaha (I wouldn’t of course, just shot guns and clays for me). 

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Chris and I had a blast! Hahahahaha...but more importantly so did Jasper and Di. Happy birthdays you guys! 

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After a great morning we headed off to a really lovely restaurant for a meal. 

A quick change in the car and I was good to go, preferably it’s better to eat in looser clothing than skinny jeans, I can eat in them but I undo the button and zip and cover with my top. 

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Top from Reiss (still), Skirt from Reiss, Shoes from Manolo Blahnik.  

Sunday came along and I found myself at a loose end, Chris had taken clients to Goodwood Festival of Speed for the day and I was twiddling my thumbs at home. I couldn’t find anyone to play out with (don’t you just hate it when that happens) so I decided to take myself off to London shopping for the day. 

I had a bit of cash saved up in my secret stash, I’m an excellent skimmer off the housekeeping. We have a very old fashioned relationship here. Chris works and I run the house. It’s not modern thinking but nearly 25 years in I think we’re doing ok. 

Anyway, I had saved up a bit and was ready to spend. Neither of us are sure why I do this by the way. It’s not terribly secret either as I tell him about it all the time. I call it my “leaving fund” although I’m never going to get anywhere as I always end up spending it on shoes and bags Hahahahaha, luckily I like him quite a lot really :) hahahahaha. I also don’t know why on this particular day I was concerned about losing my money, London is a perfectly safe place to go (maybe because it was mine hahahahahah) anyway I came up with an ingenious way to keep it safe, even if I do say so myself. Hahahahaha  

I save my unused but ruined colostomy bags. Sometimes when I’m cutting the size guide I cut straight through the bag rendering them useless, but I put them by for times when I only need a bag on for a few minutes, for example I like to weigh myself naked of everything - including my bag. so I will take off the bag I’ve had on over night, weigh myself and then put one of the ruined  bags on, then shower and change the bag after. It saves wasting perfectly good bags for just a few minutes use. 

Anyway it occurred to me that a colostomy bag is the ideal place to stash some cash....yes, I worry myself sometimes too hahahahahah...and if you were ever to do this do not do it for flights hahahahahah...

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Never get these two mixed up hahahahahah... 

All I needed to carry in my bag was my debit card for using the underground and a few pound coins for water. 

(If you’re curious about how I’m so scar free despite such colossal abdominal surgery I had the most incredible surgeon who did an amazing job. (Mr. Nigel Richardson at Springfield Hospital, Chelmsford comes highly recommended by me!) That little white line below my belly button is it. That and a couple of access holes below my bag. Another reason to be thankful and grateful). 

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Top from Whistles, Jeans (Joni’s) from Topshop, Shoes from Yeezy’s....say what you like about Kanye but he does make very comfy footwear. ;) 

I had been sent on a few errands for friends that couldn’t make the trip but still wanted to shop.  

Kim wanted some size guidance for a couple of bags that she had seen online. I was happy to oblige as was the shop assistant in Selfridges, bless her. :) 

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And Michelle wanted some chocolate from Charbonel and Walker. Apparently the best chocs you can get, but as I have a food intolerance to chocolate, caffeine and peppers etc I have never experienced the heaven of this particular brand. 

I then trekked off to New Bond Street trying dresses on all the way along it. 

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I’ve wanted this dress for ages from Belstaff, unfortunately I was somewhat underwhelmed by the fit at the back as it was hanging all wrong, and it was so hot in London I could barely be bothered to try anything really, which explains my still wearing my jeans and trainers in this photo. 

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I loved this dress in the very air conditioned Tory Burch but it was pulling open over my bust, not a great look unless you need to feed a nursing baby - I am not though, so no luck here either.  

I tried on many shoes and boots in many shops all of which didn’t work for me. It was becoming a frustrating day all in all, I appreciate its hard to feel to sorry for me. Awwwwwww didums, poor thing, is the lovely shopping trip not going well....hahahahaha. 

Anyway I struck gold in my final stop of the day, I went over to Ralph Lauren on Regents Street as I had seen a dress on a shop assistant in the one in New Bond Street but they didn’t have any in stock so she checked other stores and the Regent St store had one. 

Well although the gorgeous girl in RL New Bond St looked incredible in the dress I hadn't taken into account that she must have been a good 6 inches taller than me, I do this all the time! I clearly think I’m taller than I am, like some sort of phantom height issue. 

That dress was no good but they had other beautiful stuff that took my eye and added bonus there was a sale on. Yey!  

Remembering to remove my money from my secure money pouch in the dressing room rather than at the till I bought my goodies and skipped merrily off home...technically a lie...it was so hot I was barely able to slither home let alone skip. ;)  

 

Then Monday morning I had some visitors from down under, our old neighbours from way back moved to Australia years ago but they are on a whistle stop European tour and they very kindly made time for breakfast with me...it was great to see them in the flesh, even if I did over cook the croissants. 

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Dress by Aubin and Wills, Shoes Rock studs by Valentino. 

I am a huge fan of belted dresses, there’s a few reasons for this. 1, if like me you have big boobs and a big bum unless you get some definition with an outfit like a belt or a gathered waist you can just look like a blob with legs. 2, a belt can disguise and distract from a colostomy bag. The bag still shows through this dress even with a slip under it. A belt just adds a little camouflage where needed.  

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I saw this on someone’s insta today. It really spoke to me. If you’re struggling today for whatever reason, believe this...

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xx