Gross and Mesmerizing

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Once we returned home from the hospital and got used to the ostomy, our lives became pretty quiet in the HD world. A few months after Faith’s ostomy was placed she had her first prolapse. I was so scared. I didn’t know what was happening or even what it was called. My husband was across the state at a training for work and I was alone with Faith f a few days for the first time.

We quickly fell into our daily routine. Life returned to a new normal. About a month and a half after our return home, my husband had to attend a training for work across the state. It was the first time I was home alone with Faith for a few days. All of a sudden, the first night my husband was gone, Faith began screaming and crying in pain. I had no idea what was wrong. Then I saw it! Her stoma was sticking out what seemed to be a foot, but was actually maybe 1 to 1/2 inches. She yelled and screamed and cried like she never had before. I was terrified. I called then surgeon on-call and explained what was going on. Because her stoma had turned a dark red color, the surgeon had us go to the ER. So, around 10pm, I call we my husband and let him know we were about to make the 2 1/2 hour trip to the hospital.

I learned that a prolapsed stoma is not necessarily a medical emergency. It just happens. Especially to people with illeostomies. The doctors tried to show me how to just push it back in. I tried l, but just could not grasp the concept. They admitted us for the night to “watch” Faith. But in reality, it was so I could test some rest because by then it was late , I was traveling by myself, and I was tired. While we were there that night, Faith’s stoma prolapsed several times. Finally, it stayed in. And one of the residents suggested we try putting sugar on it if it happened again. Our surgeon advised us that, unfortunately, it would most likely happen again. He stated he was not concerned about it unless it turned very dark, happened frequently, or would not go back in.

That night was unnecessarily frightening . We were not told of the possibility of s prolapse when her Stoma was placed. I have learned that you just be proactive with an HD child. Too often what seems like an average cold can quickly turn into a life-threatening illness! If I had known What was happening and how to treat it, I would not have panicked like I did. Oh and by the way the sugar works great! Faith has had several prolapses over the past 2 years. For each one, we cover her stoma in sugar. Then it slowly shrinks up and goes back in. It kind of reminds me of putting salt in a slug. Gross and mesmerizing at the same time. Gross and mesmerizing- ha ha! That sums up the life of an HD family!

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