I had a 1-step in 1995. It was rough for about 6 months, but I had a lot of early complications (bowel obstruction, deep vein thrombosis, wound infection, presacral abscess). But those were sorted out within the first couple of months.
I had a high frequency the first 3-4 months and was onthe maximum dose of Imodium. Eating anything stimulated a bowel movement. But, I was never incontinent. Around 4 months out I was able to take a 6 hour road trip, stopping only every couple of hours.
It gets better.