Well, I'm now about 72 hours into my second pouch with the new paste set-up. I was amazed when I took the first paste only (no ring) pouch off and found that the skin around my stoma was 100% perfect. That was the first time for me since coming home from Cleveland. Even the first time my home nurse was helping me change out the pouch, I had this ring of red broken skin around the top half of the stoma base. It has varied in size or severity, and has always responded well to stoma powder, but it's always been there. This last change....nothing. I'm getting a little antsy about this pouch at the three day mark, so I'm going to change it out before bed. No point in pushing the envelope when I'm just getting comfortable. I'll be curious to see if the skin situation looks as good this time around, too.
I called Edgepark today and finally ordered some Sure Seals. I requested a sample from the company about a month ago and haven't heard a peep from them. They are a little expensive, but my insurance will cover 80% of the cost. For a couple of bucks, I was willing to order a box and give them a try. I don't know if I will use them all the time, but I definitely want them for my long runs on Saturday mornings, races, and our beach vacation coming up in a few weeks. I'll be spending a lot of time in and around the water, so the extra protection and confidence will be really nice. Speaking of which, I need to try on the new swim suit I ordered for this trip. I went with a new high waisted swim mini from Lands' End. I love their tankinis and have been wearing them for a few years now. I was feeling a little weird about having my top slip up and show the top of my pouch while in the pool. This high waisted swim mini will cover the whole thing, even the part that extends above my normal waist line. I'm very excited to try it on. Everyone we will be with knows about the ostomy, so it's not like I'm trying to hide it or anything...but I will feel more comfortable if it's not just hanging out and stuff.
Overall, things are going really well. I've got just over ten pounds left to lose before my follow up in September. I think I'm well on track to reach that goal. Then we'll be able to schedule my Step 2 surgery. I'm hoping for mid-October right after the Columbus half marathon. I don't know how long he'll have me wait for healing before Step 3. I keep reading 8-12 weeks, but I guess it depends on your surgeon and how well you tolerate everything. If everything goes flawlessly, I could be starting 2012 as a J-poucher! We will see, I guess. I'm learning very quickly that it's truly one day at a time with this thing.