Adventures in mommyhood (with an ostomy)

I have a hard time believing, at the moment, that my tiny little baby is going to be one-year old in just two months. Everyone always told me how quickly times goes by, but I am still shocked at how quickly it does. This week, we were blessed with the arrival of my first nephew, and when we went to meet him at the hospital, I was taken aback by how tiny he was and how I could hardly imagine my son being that size just 10 months ago.

These months have been a growing time for me, as well, as I learn what it means to be a mom. And while I know I having an ostomy has no bearing on the kind of mom I am, I do see some areas that are a little different for me. So I thought I’d start a new series. An OstoMOMmy series, if you will.


I will plan to talk about any instances I find in my life as a mom that have been impacted by my ostomy and consider ways to deal with it or things I have learned from it. And I’d like your help, as well. In a series like this, I want to make sure I am writing about things that actually impact other people’s lives. So I’d like to know about your questions or ideas for topics.

What questions do you have about being a parent with an ostomy? Are there certain activities that concern you about raising a child or that you’ve already experienced? Are there things that you think will be different as a parent with an ostomy? Are there certain scenarios where you, as a parent, have had a different perspective because of your ostomy? What other parenting topics would you be interested in hearing more about?

I have a couple of topics in mind, but I figure this will be a series that I will write about as it happens, whether it happens often or only sporadically. Please comment below or on my Facebook page with your questions or topic ideas!

9 thoughts on “Adventures in mommyhood (with an ostomy)

  1. Ngaire ("Nyree") Mouritsen

    I’m a grandmother with as istomy. I would like to take my small grandchildren swimming at the local pool. I don’t really want them to see the bag. Should I just be honest and tell them what it is or hide it?

    1. Stephanie Hughes Post author

      Nyree, I think it’s totally up to you whether or not you want to tell your grandkids about your ostomy. There’s no right or wrong way; it’s whatever you feel comfortable doing. But I don’t think you have to tell them in order to be able to take them to your local pool. If you’ve seen my video on swimsuits ( you can see that the bag is not visible underneath many suits, so if you want to keep it that way, you should not have any issues doing so. I do not do anything special when I go to the pool, but I do try to be prepared to empty the bag if I need to. I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.

  2. TOR

    Hi, my ileostomy was created when my daughter was six months old – I have recovered well from the surgery and over a year out from UC-caused toxic mega colon I am back to my normal self. I cycle, run and swim (and with a supportive wrap care little for what others think – i just love being in the water and taking my daughter to the pool). I was concerned about being able to lift my daughter as she grew (fearing herniation etc) but having engaged with a course of post-surgical pilates with a chartered physiotherapist and trying to think more about how I move, things are going well, and as she approaches two years old I can lift her above my head and play wither her as we wish. I find myself more concerned about what my daughter will think of my stoma – my wonderful wife has been hugely supportive, and points out that such things dont matter, but I suppose that I am thinking about how my daughter might see me. My daughter was asking about my belly button, so I showed her, and she was a little taken aback by the bag next to it – buy why wouldn’t she be! My own mum had a colostomy, so perhaps I am being influenced by that – and how I remember that. Looking forward to reading your blog and also this series you are commencing – and I must commend the humour deployed in the blog title!

  3. James

    This is a question on my mind as well. Our daughter is 16 months now and we’re in the initial phases of potty-training. Obviously I am a little confused on what my role will be… will I add confusion or can I still help? I have already gone swimming with her and my wife publicly, but I’m sure as she ages the possible confusion and questions will be coming. Glad I stumbled onto your site through G+. Will be bookmarking to see how this develops. Thank you.

  4. Chelsea mortley

    Hey ladies I have my bowl removed when I was 19 weeks pregnant and now have a bag I had uc
    They had to leave 40cm of my larg bowl becuse it was to close to my baby. I am having trouble atm and they are wanted to give me a j pouch my Question is has anyone had a reverse and be Abel to fall pregnant with IVF with a J pouch My husband and I are wanting many more children but I’m very scared to get a reversal and not be able to have any more children.

  5. Molly

    I got my permanent ostomy November 30, 2015, just a few days after my 24th birthday. I’m in graduate school right now, so babies won’t be for a long time, but we are considering having just one child of our own at some point. My partner is worried of the damage the pregnancy itself could do to my body (it seems like we Crohnies always get complications if it’s a possibility), but my concern is for when baby is actually here. Lack of sleep has always caused me stress and typically ends in a flare. I’m also worried about passing on the IBD gene. It would be hard for me to see my child in pain, knowing in some way I caused it 🙁

  6. Heidi dane-parker

    I’m a mommy to an amazing 8 month old baby (that we tried for for 8 years) and I have an Ileostomy and a non function J-pouch. I’m worried about how to explain things to her or what will she say in front of her friends? My energy is low so I need to rest more and I don’t want her to miss out because I can’t do everything. I get sick often and without warning so I don’t want her to spend her life in dr’s offices or hospitals with me.

  7. Caity

    I would love to hear some of your pregnancy stories as well. I have a lot of issues with having a full bag because I’m a teacher and can only empty between classes, so I’m afraid when I’m pregnant that I’ll have baby bump and poop bump on top!


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