Dee, everything you are describing is perfectly normal. I was so overwhelmed after surgery and cried just about every day... and I was very excited for my surgery to begin with! It is just so much to learn you have to deal with so many ups and downs right away. I had some serious anxiety issues as I had some healing hiccups and everything started to worry me. I kept wondering if this or that was normal. My husband kept reminding me that everyday my body was healing is some small way. I may not have been able to feel it in the day-to-day, but as I started to look back over the weeks I knew it was true. Then, all of a sudden, four months had gone by and I was doing great again. Now it feels like those hard times went by in the blink of an eye.
The best advice I can give you is to take it day by day and try not to worry about the things that are far off on the horizon. Yes, there are things you have to deal with right away such as making sure your pouches stick or that you are taking care of your skin... but other things like worrying about whether or not your clothing will fit can wait. I was so bad about this. I was worried about what systems I would be using on the trail for hiking when I was no where near that point in my healing. Why was I wasting my thoughts and energy on that? It did me no good. Finally I realized that I needed to be more patient. There would be plenty of time to figure things out... to try different systems... to experiment with food... to see if all my clothes fit... to learn how to go swimming with my ostomy.... all that kind of stuff. I really began to take things day by day and I tried to live more in the moment. It worked to ease my stress. Now, 6 months out , when I have the basics figured out, I can move on to the more advanced stuff like figuring out how to manage my ostomy on the trail etc. I still have to constantly remind myself to be patient and that it takes time to figure this stuff out. I am going to have my ostomy for the rest of my life and have oodles of time for trial and error.
Regarding some of your other questions, gas was one of my major worries in the beginning too. I didn't have Lapro, so I don't know if that bloats you up more, but I definitely had a ton of gas pain. I took gas-x all the time. Around 8 weeks, all of that started to go away. Now, I hardly take the Gas-X anymore. I still burp my pouch once in a while, but it is no big deal. I eat all the gassy foods (beans, carbonated beverages, beer, chew gum etc.) now too, though I couldn't until after the first 2 months because they gave me gas pains for a while. Especially right after surgery, your digestive system is trying to adapt, so don't worry too much about how off things are now. It will change a lot for the better as the weeks go on.
It also took me a while to get into my normal pants. I had to start off with very baggy things for the first 2 months. I still had incision woes after that, but the bloating had gone away enough that slowly I eased back into my regular wardrobe. By the time I had my wound vac off my abdominal incision at 4 months, I could wear all my clothes again.
Don't be too hard on yourself. I know it is easy to want to return to normal immediately, but this is major surgery and it takes a lot of time to emotionally and physically heal.
-39 years old
-Officially diagnosed with UC in 2006, though had symptoms since 1999.
-Had mild/moderate symptoms continuously until severe flare in autumn 2010 which required 2-week hospital stay
-Took Asacol, Rowasa, Canasa and Prednisone to manage flares but meds stopped working
-Tried 1 dose of Remicade but had excruciating joint pain and discontinued
-Had permanent ileostomy surgery 11/8/2010