So, I have not posted on here for a few weeks and now I can share with you why!
18 months ago, me and my 2 friends had a crazy idea that we should save up for the ultimate tourist trip to California. We wanted to do it all, Disneyland, Universal, Warner Brothers, San Francisco, the works!
The planning was going well, we had got a great deal from the travel agents, even the Big Bang Theory were filming an episode while we would be there. We couldn’t believe our luck.
Then…you guessed it…6 months before we go, I get diagnosed with my little health niggle.
I had no idea what to do. I obviously still wanted to go but I genuinely had no idea how I was going to fare. There was going to be so much walking involved with most days we had planned. I was having to change my diet and didn’t know what I was going to eat, knowing that America is the king of red meat. Most of all, I didn’t want to be a burden to my friends. I didn’t want to ruin the trip for them.
Then came the medication bombshell. The thought of having to inject myself whilst away from home while it was still so new, and travel with needles in my bag, was enough to make me not want to get out of bed at all! I was also finding injecting in my back particularly tricky and needed help doing it, meaning I would have to teach one of my friends how to do it when we were on holiday.
So I had some major thinking to do…
So about 6 weeks before we were due to leave, I had a long conversation with my MS nurse. The theme? I wanted to go on holiday like nothing was wrong. No MS talk, no new diet, no medication.
I wanted to go on this holiday like we had planned. No health problems, no restrictions, like it should have been.
We arrived home last weekend and I smashed it. SMASHED. IT. Full stop, capital letters and all. I am filling up just writing these words.
Over the two weeks, we walked an average of 8,500 steps a day. It was 25 degrees most days, meaning no damp English air to contend with. I ate ice cream, beautiful ribs at Tony Roma’s, and so many Oreo cookies I lost count. I even scaled the hill to Griffith Observatory and was rewarded with the most beautiful views of the LA city.
I’m not going to lie, I was knackered most evenings, and was a bit tingly by the time I was getting into bed each night but my goodness, I exceeded my own expectations by far. They were just a dot on the horizon!
And I needed it. I needed to forget about all the things I worry about each day now. I needed to have two weeks of fun. I needed to laugh with my friends and get lost in a place we didn’t know. And I needed to meet Donald Duck, because, well, you know… I needed to feel ‘normal’ dare I say it.
Since my diagnosis, I have had this voice in the back of my head that keeps whispering: ‘You need to prove yourself.’ You may have had this thought yourself? I don’t know whether I need to prove to myself that I can still achieve all the things I want to with my health niggle or if I need to prove to the world that I can still do all these things without people writing me off, or expecting me to crumble. Or maybe it is both? I’m not sure. But I feel like I did it with this holiday. Just look at the hills we climbed in San Francisco!!
It has done wonders for my mental health. I feel like I can conquer the world now. There are so many things I want to do, things I want to see, activities I want to try. I want to write a Bucket List and get started ticking things off it!
It may just have been the kick up the bum I needed to get on with my life, with an extra little niggle for along the way…
Other pictures from my trip will be posted on my Instagram page: manchesterspirit
Disclaimer: Do not come off your medication without talking to your health professionals!! I cannot stress this enough! This blog post is my description of my own personal journey. I am not a medical professional or in anyway trying to influence my readers’ decisions about their own medication. Please do not take my experiences as law or as researched medical advise. For more information, please see my Disclaimer page. Thank you.