It’s like Alex T says; these things are, or can be, very different for different people.
I was in great pain before my surgery so, I was looking forward to that diminishing once I had the operation. I was not disappointed in that regard. However, the surgeon did say that ‘keyhole’ surgery was less likely to cause problems than when they open people up.
As for the aesthetics of the ‘thing’ – they say that ‘beauty is in the eye of the beholder’.
I never perceived my stoma as anything other than a necessary appendage to manage my waste (which I was certainly not managing very well before). I did not ‘want’ it, but appreciated what it could do for me to make my life and lifestyle more acceptable.
From the tone of your post and the fact that you mention worry, nervousness, anxiety, fear etc. It encourages me to think that it might be this psycho-social aspect which may need some work for you to ‘manage’.
We also have different strategies for dealing with potential stress in our lives: I tend to write rhymes so that I can clarify my thinking and it helps me to ‘get a grip’ of those things that might otherwise send my emotions into an uncontrollable spin.
I wrote three short books about life with a stoma, but I will share with you the very first two rhymes on this theme so that you can get a sense of what was going through my mind at the time. I hope this might be of some help and comfort to you.
(If you are a glutton for punishment, or simply enjoy reading rhyming verse, then many of my rhymes on the subject of stomas can be found in the ‘collections’ section under ‘poems by Bill’.
I must admit I had a scare
the first time that I saw it there.
I can’t remember what I said
about this thing so crimson red.
Some thoughts were flashing through my mind
about how fate had been unkind.
Most of all I thought “Why me!”
that had to have this ostomy.
What in the world had I done wrong
that to this thing, I’d now belong?
This thing that stuck out from my tum
replacing my malfunctioning bum.
Right now I only speak for me
when talking of my ostomy.
They told me I would benefit
but I began to doubt that bit.
To tell the truth, I won’t pretend
I thought that this would be the end.
I thought the active life I’d led
was now gone, forever dead.
There was no way that I could swim
with what looked like an extra limb.
There’s nothing anyone could say
to keep these type of thoughts at bay.
The negatives exaggerated
as my mood degenerated.
It seemed that I had lost control
of my body and my soul.
But now I’ve had this ‘thing’ a while
I can look back and I can smile.
For now I’m doing so much more
and I’m more active than before.
B. Withers 2012
(In: My Ostomy World 2013)
ME AND MY OSTOMY.
‘Twas not an answered prayer for me
to ‘have’ to have an ‘Ostomy’.
It’s no more easy to adjust
just because something’s a ‘must’.
I could whine and feel quite sad
but now it’s done it’s not so bad.
Bright blood - red as it could be
it’s not unlike a rose to see.
Rose red colour, shape as well
shame it hasn’t got same smell.
Bulbous shapes surround a hole
as if formed by mini-mole.
Shows sensuous femininity
plus protruding masculinity.
There is base beauty to be found.
in this mucus membrane mound.
I appreciate it’s feel when warm
and celebrate its rounded form.
When washing with the water cold
it shrivels like it’s growing old.
Predictably it starts to grow
once warm internal fluids flow.
I must surmise how I might be
without my mighty Ostomy.
Pre–ostomy I had much pain
that I would not want back again.
Pre-ostomy as I recall
I hardly had a life at all.
From all that painful past I’m free
now my stoma’s part of me.
Bill Withers 2011
(In: My Ostomy World 2013)