Well, just as I was getting ready to cheer the fact that I had survived a busy weekend with family and was able to decompress for a day, I get side swiped with family news that I did not want to hear – my dear Aunt Betty passed away at the young age of 91.
Now in years gone past it would be nothing for me to jump in the car and take off for the funeral and all things family should do. But since my COPD, Asthma and heart issues took over as constant companions – those jump in the car and go trips just do not happen, especially on my own, just me and the car type.
Since my son is not talking to me these days for whatever reason his wife has chosen, and my daughter moved with family to Missouri, I am limited to who can ride with me and that limit is my wife. Problem right now is my wife is occupied taking care of an 11-year old grandson with Asperger’s and already had plans to go to Tulsa this weekend to see our oldest daughter, son-in-law and now one-year old grandson Ezra.
While she proposed canceling that trip and helping me get to Denver, I was not yet ready to deal with the grandson on such an adventure knowing how he gets when being around a bunch of new people he may not know – plus the cost of a more accommodating hotel room would be out of our limited budget. Another point, sometimes trying to deal with his habits from having Asperger’s can cause stress on me as I continue to learn to make the adjustments necessary when he is staying with us and a longer trip for me right now just is not something I am sure I am ready for.
Because I have more confidence in my abilities to travel a seven-plus hour trip on my own, with a stay overnight, driving in a big city and then returning home on another seven-plus hour trip, I proposed to give it a try. Boy, you can imagine how quickly that got shot down by the wife and by family.
Guess sometimes I forget that even when feeling on top of the world, my world is not the same as it was in the past.
But then, well ‘Lenny’ stepped in and solved the problem by deciding to find a trigger while at the grocery store and flaring up with an impressive episode of SoB (Short of Breath). By the time we finished our shopping and drove home – I was sounding and feeling awful, while really struggling with the breathing – which when the oximeter was given a chance to do its job, was verified with an oxygen level of 87. No wonder I felt like hell.
As we that fight those battles with COPD and/or Asthma know, after bouts like that it sometimes feels like we just went five miles on a run going full speed.
Needless to say, it took me much of the rest of the afternoon and into the evening to feel back to normal and as I tried to get the energy level back, I was both cursing and thanking ‘Lenny’ for throwing the curveball at me.
Cursing, because having a bout like that is just exhausting, which also can and will put a major pinch on the rest of a day.
Being thankful, because it was a reminder of how unpredictable my routine can be, even when I am thinking I was checking for all and any triggers within my boundaries. Thankful, because it was that reminder I needed to remember that going on trips longer than maybe two-to-three hours on my own, could be just a physical disaster waiting to happen.
So, while the flare-up was extremely frustrating, it was also meant as that wakeup call that I probably needed before I went and tried to do something stupid like head for Denver and then have a major flare-up or worse while driving across the flat lands of western Kansas and eastern Colorado.
And that my friends, is where ‘Lenny’ (my COPD/Asthma) and me are at 4 today.
Want to know who ‘Lenny’ is? ‘Lenny’ is the name I gave my constant companion called COPD/Asthma. I have found that referring and dealing with my chronic illness as a companion I am less apt to get really angry with it, but instead more likely to work with it like you would in a strong relationship. Besides treating anything with TLC is much better than hammering away at it as if it was an enemy.
As always – if you or anyone you know have any symptoms involving lung and breathing functionality, and they linger over and over while disrupting a lifestyle – then please ask questions and get it checked out.
Remember – ‘a person without good breathing, is a person without a good life’, so let’s do what we can, to learn what we can, to improve what we can.
I bid to all – smiles, prayers, blessings and steady breathing – Mr. William.
(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer through wheezingaway.com – no part of this write may be used or copied without written permission.)
NOTES: Sometimes we share what may seem like medical information, but we are only giving descriptions and highlights of various aspects of having COPD and/or Asthma and no way do we ever want our information to be considered medical treatment type of information, always consult your physician for more, clearer medical founded information.