12 Jun

Some people will never be mature enough to stop posting ridiculous things over the internet. For example, on Tumblr, there is a picture going round which is a cartoon someone has made of a stickman sitting at a computer and it says “Google Stoma, I dare you”, then they look horrified and pull away. Others consist of people saying things like “NEVER google stoma, it cannot be unseen” and writing genuinely rude, ignorant and sick comments about it. It makes me SO angry. 

Do these people not know what it is like to have a loved one suffer from any type of illness or pain? Have they not ever felt an ounce of pain themselves? Do they ever not stop and think how lucky they are to have health? Do they ever stop for one moment and think about doing something positive, rather than abusing their bodies to hell with drugs or alcohol or smoking ridiculous amounts? Do they ever stop to think that maybe, one day, they will get ill and require medical help? Obviously not. It will just be karma that one day, they get ill, or for whatever reason require something that will save their lives, like a stoma. 

A stoma is far from disgusting. Okay, let’s all admit it’s something out of the ordinary when you see one for the first time and yes it does take some adjustment, but what strikes me is these people who are so cruel, obviously never imagine what they would rather it be if it was a matter of a relative needing a stoma to save their life. For many of us, having a stoma saves us, it is the difference between life and death, like it was for me. Even if it does not make the difference between life and death, it changes the quality of somebody’s life for the better and gives them a greater shot at experiencing health and happiness. I went through 13 years of hell and endless suffering meaning I had little life before I got my life given to me and saved, all thanks to having something that is apparently so disgusting.

Even if I never required one, and somebody I knew needed one, I would never look down my nose at them for having to have one. It is cruel, naive, rude and plain ignorant to ever undermine the pain or suffering people go through and judge them for something they have had to have or made the choice to have to try to get their health on to a good level and make something out of their lives. My Uncle had to have one over a year before me, due to Ulcerative Colitis, and to me, it makes him no less of a person. In fact, it makes him much more of a person and more beautiful for all the suffering he has gone through and came out fighting with a smile on his face, reluctant to let the life of hell he had before beat him to a pulp. 

Whether it’s a stoma, an amputation, any change to the body or scars, we should be able to feel beautiful. Our scars and changes we have had to undergo are what make us beautiful and entitle us, more than those who are cruel and so naive, to be proud of who we are. I will never tolerate any bullying or cruelness. 

Chances are, people have been to hell and back more than you could ever imagine, to get to where they are. Don’t judge, just because someone has to have a hole in their body or a stoma out of their stomach or neck, or wherever it may be. That was their lifeline. Appreciate the life you have whilst you have it. Life is way too short for cruel remarks and bullying.

If you still find it hilarious to bully and make such unthoughtful comments, then seriously re-evaluate your life. I guarantee you the day when you drink yourself stupid or are too busy taking life for granted, karma will come right back ground and slap you in the face.

I’m so proud of my stoma, it gave me my life.

10 months on, and me and StaceyStoma are doing great, here’s to life.

7 Responses to “Ignorance”

  1. John Ingamells June 13, 2012 at 12:13 am #

    i read your blog and was shocked and appalled at the fact that this sort of cruel unnecessary ignorance is going on. i have had crohns since 14 and am 51 this year. i have had a stoma since 1987 i have experienced personal ignorance and cruelty but the idea that a collective buzz is achieved by ridiculing and bullying people with a stoma, genuinely makes me nauseaous. i admire you in taking it on full throttle. i support you totally. your blog was honest and an insight on why a stoma is needed.

    • staceystoma June 13, 2012 at 12:15 am #

      Hello John,
      Thank you for your lovely comment! 🙂
      Unfortunately, there will always be cruel, naive people in this world who get kicks out of bullying others. Having a stoma is not something to be ashamed of, but I tell you one thing, having that sort of negative attitude really is! I can’t believe some people.
      I am glad you agree 🙂

  2. Jason McDonagh June 13, 2012 at 1:47 am #

    Thank you for your post on ‘Ignorance’, I particularly loved the line ‘That was their Lifeline’, at the end of the day, that is exactly what surgery, medication etc is. We get wrapped up in ‘Oh I look different’ and forget that it should be more about ‘oh, I’m alive’.

    Although living with crohns disease has been tough, it does have a positive, it makes me think about what is important in life and really makes me have empathy for others. I have many scars from surgery which I always covered up and allowed to limit my life, but now I feel it liberating to have them on display, they are the story of my life and my battles and I’m proud of making it through. I had an ileostomy for six months and by far the saddest experience I had was a week after I had it ‘installed’, my surgery scar had split slightly and I needed a nurse to look at it. When she noticed I had a stoma, she physically stepped back and said ‘you have a bag!’. My sister was with me and the two of us were just shocked at the horror in her reaction. This was ten years ago and my memory is usually rubbish but I remember that situation vividly. However crohns has also lead me to come into contact with many fantastic nurses and all my experiences, good and bad, have brought me to where I am now, a mental health nursing student. I’m not one for focusing on negatives but I do make a point to remember how I felt in the situation with the nurse, and remember not to do that to others.

    I guess lack of understanding happens everywhere and people can express this lack of understanding in a cruel way. I would never wish anything bad on those that say hurtful comments to me or others, I probably think it first out of anger, but we all have our ‘issues’ and I try and just wish them well. As your say, Karma won’t be far away and I would hope that through life experiences they learn more about compassion and empathy. Anyways, I will shut up now coz I’m rambling lol, I have never commented on a blog before but your post did spark my interest. I wish you well, JasonX

    • staceystoma June 13, 2012 at 1:54 am #

      Hi Jason,
      Thank you so much for your comment, really appreciated.
      I am glad you enjoyed reading! 🙂 Wow, that is shocking of a nurse! Mental Health Nursing sounds great, how amazing! 🙂
      People have illnesses etc but people should not need an illness to ensure that they are not cruel to others, unfortunately, some people in this world are very cruel and narrow-minded.
      Best wishes to you! 😀

      • Larry Pilarski June 13, 2012 at 11:48 am #

        Dear “Stacy Stoma,”

        Thanks for pointing out the negativity surrounding words like “Ostomy”, “Colostomy”, “Stoma” and “Bag.” I’ve had my Stoma over 10 years now… After having my ‘procedure’ I was unable to find any support group in my town or county. I mentioned this to my Surgeon, at one of my 3 month check-ups. He, jokingly, replied “Why don’t YOU start one?” I thought “What the heck do I know about ostomies?” I Googled ostomy and started on a learning journey..

        Over the next 3 years I found so much information I was able to put together a tips booklet. (thought in lieu of no support groups this would help fellow ostomates) I had several doctors read it and they liked it!

        Now I felt more secure about starting a support group, This is how the Bayonne Ostomy Alliance was born (back in 2005) . There still is too much ignorance out there about life-saving ostomies… So I’m on a crusade to end the stigma attached to words like *Soma* *Bag* *Colostomy* and such.

        In that vein I’d appreciate your posting the following:

        E M P A T H Y

        Empathy differs from sympathy. People in the medical, nursing and healing professions can offer sympathy for a patient’s disease or defect and the need for an ostomy.

        The offering of empathy, though, can be done only by ostomates; only they have the unique understanding derived from experiencing a similar situation.

        Without even a word, the sight of a vigorous individual with an inconspicuous ostomy is testimony to the acceptability of a stoma.

        Beyond the reassuring appearance comes the shared concerns and triumphs, solutions to problems, answers to questions.

        This exchange makes easy the rehabilitation of new ostomates and is a source of enormous pleasure to those who are reaching out to a fellow human being.

        “To Know The Road Ahead . . Ask Those Coming Back!”

        The Ostomy Alliance

  3. Jay June 13, 2012 at 7:56 am #

    Hi there i no where your coming from me too are in the same boat has yourself chin up and let it go over your head X

    • staceystoma June 13, 2012 at 5:42 pm #

      Thank you for the comment Jay! I am smiling and proud! 🙂

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