A New Year, A New Resolution…


So, we’re just a few hours away from saying farewell to the emotional roller-coaster ride that was 2014.

It really has been a year of highs and lows and one that will stay with me forever as the most poignant year of my life.

This time last year, at the close of 2013, I sat scrolling through my facebook newsfeed. The green-eyed-monster was upon me once again; friends, family and acquaintances all beautifully glammed-up and out having fun celebrating the new year. They were making plans for exotic holidays, setting up achievable goals and making New Year Resolutions; while I was at home, once again, reflecting on how pitiful the year had been. Another year of suffering, another year of unhappiness, another year of degrading memories….another year gone forever. On went the television at 11:50pm, so we could watch the London NYE Display coverage Live on BBC; this had become our NYE tradition as I was never able to go out without having a toilet accident. It got to 11:59pm and -surprise surprise – the sudden surge of incontinent diarrhoea hit me. Off to the toilet I ran for the 782nd time that day; from the downstairs loo I could hear the chimes of Big Ben from the TV as the clock struck 12 and I laughed at myself because of how pitiful my life had become. In my frail, weak and emaciated state, I wandered back into the living room a few moments later; the fireworks [on TV] were still going-off in all their glory while members of the public were kissing, cuddling, wishing one another well and declaring New Year Resolutions. I so wished I could have been there and that I could make resolutions and plans like those on TV; it was at that very moment in time something hit me and I made a serious resolution to myself. My resolution was to change my life, to end the existence and to start living. To be a better Mother and Wife, and more importantly, to be the person I so desperately wanted to be.

First thing on New Years Day morning I called my IBD nurse and left a message stating that I couldn’t carry on existing this way and that I desperately needed to meet with my surgeon and GI. To my amazement, a couple of hours letter she returned my call and asked if I would like to attend an appointment on Friday the 3rd of January, which of course I accepted. A couple of months previous to this, I had been in hospital because of my Crohn’s disease and had discussed having an ileostomy formed with my surgeon. After exhausting all avenue’s, it was something I had already accepted, and even got excited about at the prospect of it happening. My surgeon felt it was the best thing for me and that it would massively improve the quality of my life, as did my respiratory consultant. Sadly, my GI had been away on holiday while I was an in-patient so, someone else was looking after me; this particular doctor (despite test results and all he had been told) decided that I needed to try Infliximab as a last resort – I felt so heartbroken.

The 3.1.14 arrived; I went into my appointment crying with exhaustion, sobbing while justifying the reasons to my surgeon and GI why I couldn’t carry on living this life. Within 5 minutes of entering the room, a date to have my ileostomy formed was made and my tears of sadness had turned to tears of joy and pure elation. They knew the time was right for me and that there was nothing any medication or treatment could have done. It was such a relief that they were on my side and understood how truly unbearable my life had been for so many years. And so, on the 5th of February 2014, my ileostomy was formed and my life changed forever!

I don’t think I will ever be able to top the success of last years resolution along with all of the ‘firsts’ it gave me the ability to achieve. So, my resolution for this year is to carry on living life in the best way possible; living without regret, laughing often, cherishing every moment, loving dearly, and to take advantage of every opportunity that comes my way.

Here’s to an amazing 2015, OstoBuddies! Rachel xxx

rachel@stomawise.co.uk