Thank you all for your kind words. I would not say that I am not proud of myself for the small part I played, but, I also know this could never have happened without faith, family, friends and excellent medical care.
To answer your question, Praying, I had some excess skin near the stoma that the surgeon used to close it up. The hole itself wasn't quite that large, I used the 4x4s to really block it up, but the hole was about the size of a dime.
My bride of 31 years is not too bummed that I can now speak freely. The additional conversation gives her more things to disagree with me about and to tell me how she is always right!