Surgery was the best health decision I have ever made. I am almost 6 years out from a 2-step j-pouch. The temporary ileostomy (believe me, I dreaded the thought) wasn't so bad as I felt so well for the first time in several years. It allowed me to go out in public without the fear of losing control of my bowels. Recovery and adaption to the new plumbing can take a year but as Smiles said, have a positive attitude and be patient with the process.
dx proctitis in 1987
dx UC in 1991, was stable until 1998
1998 started prednisone, asacol, pentasa, nortriptylene, ativan, 6MP, rowasa enemas and suppositories, hydrocortisone enemas, tried the SCD diet, being a vegetarian, omega 3s, flax, pranic healing, yoga, acupuncture, probiotics
2000 lost all my B-12 stores and became anemic
2001 opted for j-pouch surgery- now living life med-free