Ostomy Memories has Balls


To be without guts (present company accepted) doesn’t mean one lacks balls. I happen to have balls in spades: super jumbo cotton balls. They are a staple of my changing routine which I perform every fourth day, first thing in the morning, usually about 3:30 AM or so, as I am an early riser. The cotton balls have to be both SUPER JUMBO, which means they are larger than the run-of-the-mill, every day cotton ball, plus they absolutely must be ALL COTTON. The “cotton” balls that include some synthetic addition are not as absorbent and will not pass muster. I don’t use many; typically I can change over using only four or five, so one bag lasts a long time. Of course, it’s impossible to think about cotton balls without remembering the great scene in CATCH-22 when Milo Minderbinder approaches Yossarian, who is sitting naked in a tree observing a funeral, to get him to taste his new idea: chocolate covered cotton balls. Yossarian, who didn’t have an ostomy, wouldn’t have found normal cotton balls very exciting, and he certainly reacted negatively to Milo's new product.  In any event, I sing the praises here of cotton balls, the SUPER JUMBO variety. It’s good to value the simple things in life, and you can’t get any simpler than cotton balls.

Thank you HenryM.  There are not many people who could talk a load of balls so eloquently. It is much appreciated in these times when so much talk seems to have become distorted by political 'gaslighting'.  I have no use for cotton balls myself, but I can always make use of a good story, and you tell them so well!

Best wishes


Henry, thanks for the laugh. I had forgotten that scene in Catch 22. My personal favorite is when the nurse just switches the input/output bags on their poles, and Yossarian just screams.

I am a textile hobbyist - handspinner and weaver - and a bit of a fiber snob as a result. I agree completely with your comments about cotton/synthetic blends. Best left on the store shelf.


Top 5 Collections
<p><br />Re cotton/synthetic blends:&nbsp; I do prefer cotton/polyester tee shirts for hiking/walking, as they dry out more quickly than cotton only.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p>

Words of Encouragement from Ostomy Advocates I Hollister
<p>You artists are so finicky...&nbsp; So, I guess I'm not the only yarn spinner around here.<br /><br /></p>

True. However, you are the reigning wordsmith of prose, Bill being your counterpart in rhyme. Artists working in a different medium.


You are no slouch as a wordsmith yourself, Laurie! I too am a bit of a fabric snob, natural fabrics all the way for me. I just don't like the way synthetics feel against my skin. The exception for me is fleece, what a great invention. As someone who is always cold, it has been my savior.


Hi Henry, I hope you don't mind my asking but the one point of your post that I "cottoned on to" was the fact that you change your appliance every fourth day. As someone who is about to become an "ileostomate," I am aware that I will probably need to change more often. When you say every fourth day, is day one the day you change and then one, two, and three days without changing?

Best regards,


P.S. I hope you are not in the path of Sally?!!

<p><br />RE changing:&nbsp; Yes, if I put on a new appliance on Monday, my next change will be Thursday, etc.&nbsp; I believe that I could likely go longer, certainly four, perhaps even five days, but I am most comfortable with this schedule and have no plans on altering it.&nbsp; My skin remains in good shape, I never have leaks, and I'm just as comfy with it on the last day as on the first.&nbsp; My insurance covers it, so I have no incentive to change my practice.</p>

I think I'm missing something here... What do you do with the cotton balls? ;&zwj

Reply to Anonymous

Sorry, I didn't mean to be opaque about what I'm using them for.  I soak one at a time in warm water and cleanse around the stoma.

Reply to HenryM

Oh, okay. Lol, thanks!

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