My emotionally difficult journey with Crohn’s disease prompts serious questing and problem-solving as I try to dress comfortably and fashionably. The situation was bad enough when I was dealing with dramatic weight fluctuations, a sensitive belly, and serious wear and tear on my poor undies. After surgery to remove my mutant colon, I had to figure out how to deal with my permanent ileostomy. My stoma’s location prevented me from comfortably using my old underwear and pants, and the weight of my ostomy bag got irritating sometimes. I also worried about the bulging bag showing under most outfits.
My lovely mother helped me in my quest for comfort, and a dear friend recommended special ostomy underwear. Now I have a variety of goodies that work for me, and I absolutely must share this particular discovery. I found Awestomy through friends on Facebook, and I love my fancy undies enough to let the internet see me without pants. For someone with serious self-confidence issues, that’s a pretty big deal.
Awestomy currently sells shirts, wraps, swimsuits and underwear. The owners, Jason and Jessica, have done a great job with their social media presence and creating personal connections within the ostomy community. Their sense of humor shows throughout everything they do, but most obviously on their shirts. I don’t own any yet, but my favorite says “intestinal fortitude!”
I have the women’s wrap in pink. I like the tapered waist and rubbery stuff around the inside of the top hem (whatever it is, it’s on my strapless bras too), because the cut suits my body type and stays in place. This wrap enables me to wear a few pairs of pants that hit below my bag. Since you can’t see through the wrap, it hides the bag even if it’s worn over pants.
I have the booty shorts in pink, black, and navy stripe. The fabric is so soft, and the lace is wonderful! I adore lace, so I feel dressed up in these. Many types of lace aren’t worth the trouble because they’re itchy and stiff, but this is high-quality and stretchy. There are moments I look at my opaque brown bag and just feel less than fabulous with it, so it’s nice put on my Awestomy undies and feel pretty. That might sound silly, but my obsession with bright things and fun patterns seriously draws me to these products.
Both garments look awesome, conceal my bulging bag under tighter clothes, support the weight of a full bag, and avoid my common complaints with bad underwear (irritation, sliding around, constricting my bag unevenly). Sometimes I feel like I’m not even wearing an ostomy bag because all I feel against my sensitive skin is the smooth fabric of the inner pockets. I’m a happy camper.
It’s come to my attention that some people are hesitant to try special ostomy garments because they want to feel normal, and they don’t want to use any more medical gear than necessary. If you are hesitant based on a dislike of medical-looking clothing, I should tell you plenty of people have seen my Awestomy undies and thought they looked great. When I wore them for the Chicago Undie Dash, I got tons of compliments from healthy people who had no clue I was hiding an ostomy bag and a phone under my sassy red lace.
Awestomy is currently trying to raise funds through Kickstarter, and they could really use your contribution. They’re offering great rewards for different donation levels, and I definitely wish I had more to give! They hope to use this project to expand their business and enable them to reach a wider customer base. Even if you’re short on cash, please at least watch the main video and pass the Kickstarter link along to your ostomy buddies.