I was disagnosed with stage 2, muscle invasive bladder cancer, N-0, M-0 in April. Two MRIs showed no cancer outside the bladder. After 6 sessions of chemotherapy, my oncologist has determined it is time to remove the bladder (along with prostate and lymph nodes). Since I'm age 70, he's concerned about the effect the chemo is having on my bone matter. He feels continued chemo would delay bladder removal for quite some time and that it's important to get the bladder out now. Surgery is scheduled for Monday, Aug 8. I have opted to have the ileal conduit with stoma rather than the neo-bladder ( for numerous reasons). Surgery should be 4-5 hours with hospital stay of 5-6 days. Never been in the hospital so have no idea what to bring with me for a 5-day stay and how to survive it. Any ideas? Also, how do I deal with having a "bag for life". What do I need do know about the first days/weeks of living with a bag. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I'd love to hear some real life stories about living with the bag. Thanks to all, wish me luck.