Okay, I know this may come as a complete surprise...but I was a Boy Scout, an Eagle Scout nonetheless.
Hiking, biking, backpacking, camping were some of my favorite things until my mid twenties.
But with my health deteriorating I really wasn’t sure how well I’d do camping overnight.
A friend of mine invited me to an overnight car-camp, I was leery about it until I arrived and had no option of bailing. Having been so confined to the comforts of my home and modern plumbing, for the last few years, the idea of being without it became a serious fear. Not simply because I’ve grown accustomed to it, but because of my past experiences with c.diff, and my near two hour daily reliance of the facilities due to diuretics. Things I needed to take into consideration were to have hot/cold packs at the ready, every fluid/nutrient I may need and a bug-out bag for the hospital. The idea of being so vulnerable even with these safety-nets was constantly troubling me.
I had two extra days worth of my meds, hot/cold packs, every nutrient/supplement I needed and snacks, my hospital bug-out bag, and a hammock.
Sleeping through the night was a challenge, and I spent a bulk of my time napping during the day.
Here’s the weird part.
These strange superficial fears aren’t wholly mine, A combination of androgen blocking diuretics
and slowly worsening hepatic encephalopathy (HE) helps create this circumstance. HE’s brain fog with the extra emotional responses triggered by a hormonal imbalance due to androgen blockers converting testosterone into estradiol, among other things, help craft these odd thoughts.
I made the poor mistake of not informing my friends of my unusual dietary needs as we planned out the meals.
The camping outing was a small step for me in a much larger hiking goal of the John Muir Trail next sping/summer.
Things to remember for next trip:
Besides the standard camping gear...
- Meds, prescriptions for the meds.
- Insurance Info (travel insurance info if I’m out of the county)
- Med ID Tag
- Make sure group understands dietary needs.
- At least one other person trained in first aid.
- At least one other person aware of my Hep C.
- 8oz bottle of 91% alcohol, in addition to first aid kit.
- 4oz of bleach. (Ratios to keep in mind 1 part bleach, 10 parts water = don’t consume, Up to 1/4 teaspoon per gallon can be added to lower quality water to help clean it and still consume it.)
- 2 pairs of disposable gloves.
- And stupid fucking rope, you never know why you’ll need it, but you’ll always need it.