Hospital to Hawaii 

My stomach “bug” turned out to be a nasty one. I threw up and couldn’t keep anything down Friday, Saturday, and when I threw up Sunday morning we decided it was time to go to the Emergency Room for dehydration. At the ER they tried 3 different anti nausea drugs as well as started IV fluids. The anti nausea meds work by pushing food out of your stomach and they resulted in me being incontinent. I have new respect for ER nurses. I was feeling so sick that I didn’t mind the indignity of having my messy bowel ejections cleaned by nurses numerous times. It also helped me commiserate with people with ALS who need help with intimate bathroom duties everyday. There must be some way to set a mental boundary even without being sick. Still, not a fun way to live. I stayed overnight one night and really did not feel better until the next day. I was still nauseous but the hospital doctor let me go home saying no formula until nausea is gone but do be sure to stay hydrated.

It took me the rest of the week to get back up to full feeds, with continued quick trips to the bathroom. My wonderful boss suggested I take the rest of the week off in order to be healthy enough to fly to Hawaii Friday morning. The first week in October is Fall Break for our school district, and we had long standing plans to go to Kona to see our niece Jonika and her baby Oliver, born July 26. I was feeling much better by Thursday and finally back up to full feeds, so the trip was good to go.

This was my first experience flying while bringing along my own cans of formula to eat on the way. In TSA screening they pulled out my food bag and I had to undergo a pat down. They swiped every can and my shoes and me. I had shown them my feeding tube so at least they knew they shouldn’t open the cans.

We were able to have the infusion company drop ship a week’s worth of my food at Jonika’s house, so all I had to bring was enough food for one day.

After we got our rental car and got moved into our condo (gorgeous ocean view) we found a great lunch spot – Annie’s Burgers and sat by a big screen window with a cool breeze. We desert folks were feeling the humidity, so it felt great. The food smelled so good. Stan and Andy had very tasty burgers while I poured my lunch into my tube. Unbeknownst to us at the time, we were very near Jonika’s house. She was working until mid afternoon.

She came by our condo after she picked up Oliver and we had such a great reunion! Jonika lived with us from age 11 – 15, and it was wonderful to meet Oliver who is just over 2 months old.

It was total love, connection, and hope.

Great Uncle Stan with Oliver

Since starting my ALS meds a few months ago I have been wearing depends because of unpredictable leakage. I packed a couple to carry with me on the plane, just in case, but I also took an imodium before the flight. It’s pretty scary to fly thinking you might have to get to the bathroom quick. When we arrived in Hawaii I realized they are too hot to wear here and my problem seems to be gone. Saturday morning we went to Costco to get Stan a new swimsuit and me some underwear as well as drinks and food for my boys.We also picked up diapers for dear little Oliver.

Then we went by Jonika’s house and hung out with her and Oliver all afternoon. Chris, Oliver’s dad was working double shifts so we wouldn’t meet him until Sunday. They live in a rental house on a coffee farm that is an amazing place.

Jonika showing us around the beautiful “farm”.

We had a wonderful afternoon  just hanging out.

Andy really loves his cousin’s son

So much love 

Stan and Jonika have always been close. Now Oliver is close to Stan too!

Love, connection, hope, and memories.

We laughed and got caught up and said “remember when” a lot.

On Sunday we got out on the water on a snorkel trip. 

I wasn’t able to snorkel because of my g tube but I got to hang out with this guy.

Lots of good Hawaii fun!

Yes that’s my feeding tube hanging out. I did two feedings on the boat. I am definitely not as self conscious about feeding in public. And then we got to meet Chris.

Two new family members to love and great time with Jonika and lots of love, connection, and hope. And relaxation which is just what I needed.

Hospital to Hawaii week definitely ended on an upswing. I hope it continues.

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