My daughter had j-pouch surgery when she was 17 years old, the summer between junior and senior year in high school. For her, it was the best decision she made. She had her temporary ostomy for 4 months although she could have had her reconnect surgery after 3 months. She waited because she had too many fun things (homecoming, etc) to do in school!
Surgery is major and we scheduled her surgery for the beginning of the summer. Physically, her body was exhausted from the surgery. UC-wise, she was healthy and happy. While she never loved the ostomy, she adjusted well. She never minded having it while in school or with her friends. She was just so happy not to be sick. Her takedown surgery was simple compared to the first surgery. She had minor leaking in the beginning.
Today she is happy, healthy and just finished her 2nd year of college. She still uses the bathroom quite a bit but she can hold it if necessary and she gets no cramping. She's traveled by car from New York to Florida several times with friends. She takes no medicines. The disease doesn't control her anymore. Once in awhile she gets a small blockage. It is uncomfortable but usually clears up within 48 hours.
As Suebear said, the surgeon is the most important part of the decision. That, and a positive attitude. It definitely helped with recovery and learning what the "new normal" would be.