Baldies' Blog began originally in the UK by a 26 year old journalist with a blood cancer on a mission to inform the world about bone marrow donation.

He has since died, and I took on the cause of making cancer care more transparent for everybody.

Cancer is a disease that will touch everybody through diagnosis or affiliation: 1 in 2 men will be diagnosed and 1 in 3 woman will hear those words, "You Have Cancer."

I invite you to read how I feel along my journey and
how I am continuing to live a full life alongside my Hodgkin's lymphoma, with me controlling my cancer, not my cancer controlling me.

I hope that "Baldies' Blog" will prepare you to handle whatever life sends you, but especially if it's the message, "You Have Cancer."

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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Camping Summary

It's Tuesday. I returned  from camping last Friday.
Maybe that sounds like a while to some of you? I'm still recovering.
Camping is one of those fabulous things I do because somehow I always forget the agony it leaves me in and remember all the smiling, singing, and laughing.
When X is in his best moods, he sings.
While we were camping he sang constantly.
I considered cutting our trip down from two weeks to one, but then right before school ended, X started to ask obsessively about jobs, how to make money, save money, etc.
He wouldn't tell  me why, and suspecting the worst: that he'd become overly anxious due to our finances, I dragged the reason out of him at therapy.
Why the anxiety?
He wanted money to pay for vacations. He heard we might only go camping one week and was going to pay for the second week.
So two weeks of camping in The White Mts. Again. The first week, as per tradition, X and I go up with my mother, Nana, along Lex or C or a playmate, and meet my Grandparents (my mom's parents, the kid's great-grandparents, who still camp 2 weeks in their 70s. G-pa still bikes 12 miles each morning with my mom).
I luck out and do virtually nothing. I'm very babied.
That's how it has been possible for me to continue to due this. Mom just takes over.
After a week the physical difficulty of camping has worn me down: walking to the toilets, from one campsite to another, packing for the beach, playing (if possible).
Of course, this is when J finally gets up to join us.
Then we move out of mom's camper and into our own camper a couple sites away. I have to walk more between sites.
I  then have more responsibilities and less energy, and I'm pushing myself to do everything that J and X want to do.
Then, I get really sick, exhausted sick. The routine is something like this: Sun-Sat: relatively good, active.
Sun. I start to get ill. A week ago Sun. on came the worst possible camping sickness: an upset GI tract.
I'm 1/4 mile away from the closest bathroom, every bathroom I have access to is public, and the entirety of my bowels wants to escape NOW.
It hit at the annual rock show at Conway's Elementary school.
Somethings are just beyond my control and a bowel illness is one. I decided to let it out and run hoping nobody saw who the big stinker was in the public bathroom.
Too bad for the little girl next to me with the mom waiting patiently outside of her door. Mom kept asking her is her stomach was okay and if she needed to come in for help.
The little girl kept denying it (since it was me) but mom didn't believe her.
When mom went into the stall I gracefully slipped out of their unnoticed. I don't like going to the bathroom in public bathrooms, but if my health depends on it, I'll find a way.
I snuck out unnoticed and took some immodium, but it barely plugged me up.
I ended passed out in my parent's camper since it was closer to the bathroom. Moving anywhere having to squeeze those cheeks stuck was a fight, but I fought it. . . by taking getting to the bathroom, taking immodium, and sleeping until Tues.
 I tried to schedule my sleep so I could still do outings with J and X.
C went home for a couple days with ear problems so it was the first time in years just the 3 of us were bonding camping.
I got my game face on and we all did some back to school shopping, mini golfed, and saw Harry Potter on a rainy day.
Our ONE rainy day of the vacation! The weather was fabulous.
Tues. and Weds. I started to feel better.
But I also started to throw up. If nothing came out, I just dry heaved.
I knew this would happen. Even though we have over 30 ft. of bowel it just doesn't seem that fair from one end of the GI Tract to the other.
This was better though. Vomiting is more containable. The severe nausea only lasts 5 min. until I can get some pills into my system to take care of it and keep going on my merry way, hanging out on the beach, etc.
I also got this nasty acid reflux that wouldn't kick itself.
I've upped my prilosec and taken more tums. Hopefully it helps.
I've just now started to wake up and become a somewhat active member of the world.
We came home Fri., and I slept until 2 on Sat. Then got up for a wedding. On Sun. J informed me that he wouldn't be doing all the camping clean-up himself, so I got up to help.
Then I ended up getting hot flashes and throwing up so that ended. I didn't go out that afternoon. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.
J and X saw Captain America.
I'm finally coming around. It was mostly worth it.

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