The following story
is about my move from primary school to my new
school for my secondary school years. My
name is Jessica and I have a disease called
Neuronal Intestinal Dysplasia (NIDS).
I missed out on a lot
of my primary school time owing to my health
and numerous admissions for either surgery or
complications. I have a colostomy with
most of my large bowel having been removed.
I will start with my
finishing Grade 6 and celebrating the end of
primary school with my Graduation ceremony and
my many friends who I had from Prep through to
Grade 6. I was really looking forward to
going to a new school but was unsure how it
would affect me. I spent a full day at
my new school before the end of the
year. My Mum and Dad had put in a huge
effort, Mum especially, to make the transition
as easy as possible. She met with the
Principal and the Intergration Co-ordinator to
explain the way NIDS affects my health.
In the weeks before I was due to start my new
Integration Aide contacted my Mum and
arrangements were made for her to visit me at
home. She came on a number of occasions
and listened and helped me with the care of my
stoma (my stoma is called "Hilary").
My big day came to
start school with Dad taking the morning off
work and driving us all to school. He
carried my books as there were so many!
Everything was very different for me but all
the kids and teachers were really great and of
course my Aide was there for me.
Secondary school is
very different in a number of ways and I would
like to explain what I mean. Firstly,
even though I am in secondary, my new school
starts at Prep and goes through to V.C.E.
level and we are all on the same ground.
The teachers and staff are all very caring and
the students are all treated as
individuals. We don't wear uniforms but
have a strict dress code. We had our
first camp in the first few weeks. I had
only been on camp in Primary school when Mum
came with me. I was very apprehensive
about going but Mum and Dad said my Aide would
be going with me (my Aide is a nurse and a mum
so that made me feel a little better).
Camp time came and Mum and Dad came and saw me
off. I had a good time most of the time
but missed Mum and Dad terribly. At
times it was a little hard caring for "Hilary"
but I managed. Unlike primary school,
where everyone knew I had a stoma, the kids at
my new school don't. My Aide is the best
ever person and understanding of my
feelings. The last day of camp I had had
enough. I was very tired and feeling
unwell so she put me in her car and drove me
back to school instead of going on the
bus. I really enjoy school and all my
new friends, teachers and staff. We had
a second camp and once again I was unsure
about going but my Aide went again and I
enjoyed myself so much. My first year
has finished and I am looking forward to year
8 and the challenge ahead.
By the way, 2002 was
the first year in my 14 years that I have not
had a hospital stay and I am looking forward
to repeating that in 2003!!
"Just for YOU" (Volume 13 - March 2003)
Young Ostomates United Inc