Welcome to the Dart Comfort-Fit 9000 Stoma Support System, designed for optimal comfort and control. First, find the exact size of the stoma by measuring the diameter with the templates provided.

Second, remove the Dart Comfort-Fit 9000 wafer from its container and center the template around the small opening. Trace the cutout onto it.

I will remove the template from the box and place it over my two-week old stoma. I will stare at the staples which keep my insides and guts from falling out onto the Berber carpet.


I will touch the moist, pink small intestine that protrudes out of the right side of my belly, the stoma. I will place the template over the stoma. The hole will be too big for it. I will take three or four measurements with the template before I will find the right size. I will place the seven-eighths inch cutout onto the back of the wafer as instructed and trace the shape with a ballpoint pen. I will glance at my neglected nails and nervously cut the opening with my cuticle scissors.

Third, remove the Handy-Prep Skin Wipe from its sterile packaging and swab the area around the stoma. This will provide a protective barrier between you and any intestinal discharge which might penetrate the appliance.

I will gently swab the area around the hideous protrusion which is supposed to be my salvation. I will wince at the stinging sensation of the alcohol in the wipe's solution. I will discover that there is no feeling whatsoever between the stoma and my scar.

"I guess I won’t be needing my bikini anymore." I will shake my head and stare at my reflection in contempt.

"Why, God? Why?" I will ask.

Fourth, apply a thin bead of Dart Stoma Paste approximately one half inch away from and around the opening of the wafer.

I will pick up the tube of paste, open it, and squeeze an awkward bead of the mixture around the cutout as if it were caulk. The tube will sputter and spray paste inside the opening and all over the marble counter top of the lavatory.

"Oh, for the love of..." I will try to wipe the stuff up with my fingers but the sticky concoction will smear all over everything like tacky glue. Tears of anger and despair will form in my eyes.


Fifth, attach the wafer around the stoma and apply light pressure to perfect adhesion.

I will follow the instructions but the wafer will barely stick to my skin. It will slowly curl up and out at the corners. I will press harder on the wafer but it will continue to curl up. I will grab some bandage tape and anchor the wafer to my skin. I will smile at my handy work and ingenuity.

I will look at the commode and the basket of Cosmopolitans and Vogues beside it. I will realize I will never again sit on the toilet and read.

I will press harder on the wafer for added precaution. The paste will ooze out around the stoma. I will instinctively reach for a Kleenex and dab at it but the tissue will stick to the paste. In disgust, I will pick out the fragments of the tissue from around the stoma.

I will sigh in despair.

Sixth, the Exclusive Dart Comfort-Fit 9000 Resealable Pouch, with its patented Zip-Tech closure, fits securely around the plastic flange on the wafer. Simply snap the two together and you're ready to go!

Before I will be able to place the bag onto the wafer, the stoma will spew out a foul brown substance the consistency of thick gravy and spit out undigested English peas. The discharge will splat on my bare feet, then splatter onto the carpet.

"Oh, shit."

Copyright © 2007 Tracy L. Carnes

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