Hope this helps.
1. Bring comfy clothes. Sweats, loose fitting shirts, socks, flip flops/slippers/clogs to wear on your feet.
2. Bring anti-bacterial lotion/soap. I used the kind from Bath & Body Works. Purell works great too. This way, you don't have to get up and walk to the sink everytime you need or want to wash your hands. Especially with changing a bag, you want to keep your hands clean as much as possible.
3. Bring your own pillow, throw blanket, or any comfort of home to help get you through your recovery. Those white sheets, white blankets, and white pillows can get pretty depressing and "cold" after awhile.
4. Have people there with you as much as possible. My fiance, family, and a bunch of close friends came to see me a lot. Between my fiance and my family, I was never alone. Not even through the night. They alternated staying every other night so I would never have to be alone. That by far was the biggest comfort for me. I couldn't have done it without them.
5. Bring your own toothbrush, lotions, deodorent, etc. It'll make you feel at ease being able to use your own stuff. Some people may prefer to not bring their own belongings though. Personal preference I guess.
6. Bring a little notepad and pen. I was in the hospital for a month, and 2 of those weeks were spent with a gigantic NG tube in my nose. It was far too painful and uncomfortable to speak, so this came in handy. I could still communicate without exhausting myself.
7. Don't get lax with your pain meds. Try to stay ontop of getting them at the right times. Otherwise, pain management is a butt to get ontop of. It's like constantly playing catch up. Enjoy the meds, sleep and rest when you need to, and let your body do its thing.
8. Sit up and walk/move around as much as possible. The longer you're stuck in bed, the more aches and pains you'll get. Aside from the incision pain, the sore and achey muscles were horrendous. It had me in tears many times. If you can get someone to rub lotion on your arms and legs that helps too. I even had an amazing nurse who would come in and rub my back with lotion for me. What a Godsend she was.
9. Ask questions. Don't let the medical terminology intimdate you. If you're not sure of something or feel uneasy, ask questions and let them know your concerns. You have to be your best advocate.
10. Speak up. If your nurse isn't giving you the treatment you deserve, ask to speak to the nurse manager. If the cleaning people haven't come to clean your bathroom, tell someone. This happened to me, they would skip my room and never clean the bathroom. I was rarely in it, but still, those places collect tons of germs. By the end of it, we had both nurse managers come and apologize, my room was cleaned twice a day, and the nurse managers brought everyone coffee and breakfast to apologize.
11. Try not to worry about any day other than the one you're in. You'll get overwhelmed VERY easily if you start worrying about what things will be like 10 days from now.
12. Bring an iPod, crossword puzzles, or magazines. I was never up to any of these, but my surgery wasn't planned, and I was very sick. You might feel up to doing one of these to keep your mind occupied. Time in the hospital tends to creep by...very slowly.
13. Prepare yourself to be in the hospital longer than what your doctor has said. If he said 1 week, prepare yourself for 2 weeks. This way, if you have to stay longer it won't be as disappointing. And if you leave earlier, you'll be excited and looking forward to it.
14. Don't set yourself on a schedule. There are lots of mini setbacks that can prolong your stay. By staying ontop of your mindset, you'll avoid potential upsets and depression.
15. Ask to see a stoma nurse. They're wonderful people. They will help you out and give you as much help as you need. Also, find out if your insurance covers home health nurses to come help you once you've returned home. My home health nurse was incredible. She helped me learn so much and she really set me up for gaining my independence.
And last but not least, know that any disappointing or negative feelings towards this surgery, ostomy, or recovery is 100% normal. It's a major life change. But for most of us, it's a change for the better. You'll adapt and you'll learn things as time goes on. It's trial and error, as with many other things in life. Once you're home and have more questions, ask away. The people on this forum have been a great source of knowledge, support, and reinforcement.
Best of luck!