Traveling with COPD Giveaway

Traveling with COPD Giveaway

Tonya Hidalgo has been a contributing writer and moderator for COPD.net since July 2015. Her experience with COPD comes from many years as a co-caregiver for her mother. She was diagnosed in 1997 and bravely walked through that journey until March of 2015. Her mother was courageous, but if you would have asked her, she would have never thought of herself that way. She met each challenge head on and simply never quit. It was that spirit that led Tonya to continually push her mom to live each day as much as possible. They had many travel adventures together. Most often the trip would be to either Disney World or the beach, but there was one “bucket list” trip that Tonya knew her mom needed to take. They conquered Hawaii. The memories made during each trip are priceless.

Traveling with COPD Book

What inspired Tonya to write this book:

Traveling with COPD was written to encourage others to get out of the house and continue traveling. Tonya’s mom wanted others to know that “now is the time to live your life.” As COPD progressed, her mom realized that she could have done much more in the earlier years than she had thought. When Tonya presented her mom with the idea to share some of their stories, she was met with encouragement and a task. Her mom wanted to remind people that no one is guaranteed tomorrow, not the sickest nor the healthiest. She wanted to remind everyone to live each and every day to the fullest and to keep trying, until you can’t try anymore.

You can purchase the book on Amazon.

Feeling lucky? We’re giving away five copies of her book! Enter to WIN!

HOW TO ENTER:

  • Make sure you registered and logged in on COPD.net.
  • Scroll down and click on “Join the Conversation! Members can add a comment to this story.”
  • Tell us: What’s one thing that makes life easier when you’re on the go?

Giveaway ends on July 18, 2017 at 12:00 a.m. ET. Winner will be notified via email and in the comment thread below by July 19, 2017. Winner has 48 hours to claim his/her prize before an alternate winner will be selected. For more information, please read our Terms and Conditions. Good luck!

Comments

View Comments (40)
  • pennypav
    1 year ago

    I pre-arrange everything I can. No last minute rushing! Walk slowly and rest when I can. Hurrying and anxiety make it worse on me.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    1 year ago

    That sounds like a good approach, pennypav. Glad you found something that works for you and shared it with the community.
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • CCMS
    1 year ago

    I always plan extra time for getting ready. If I start to rush, I get anxious, SOB. It’s difficult to do the simplest things which is frustrating. I stop, count and breathe. Who would have thought I would be spending so much time thinking about something that is automatic for most?

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    1 year ago

    Hi CCMS and thanks for your insight. It’s true, too, for most people, breathing is not something that is ever given a second thought. And yet, as soon as one experiences some level of difficulty, you can’t think of anything else! Hang in there!
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • dhems13
    2 years ago

    Water is my don’t leave home without it! I cough a lot and produce a lot of mucus. My last plane trip, I could tell the man next to me was uncomfortable because of my coughing. He eventually changed seats with his wife! I explained to her I am not contagious and once they realized that we started to chat. I was able to get water from the stewardess and by the time we landed, we were all three friends!

  • Casey Hribar moderator
    1 year ago

    Hi dhems13! First of all, I’m so glad to hear that you’re always drinking water! That is such a healthful decision! Second, I loved reading this story!! What a wonderful way of informing others about COPD! I’m so glad that the couple next to you ended up being so understanding and willing to listen. What a great share! Thank you! -Casey, COPD.net Team

  • KathyRaper
    2 years ago

    I find that packing ahead of time saves me a lot of anxiety on travel days. I love how easy it is to pack up my cpap machine for travel!

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi KathyRaper and thanks for your comment. It seems that many in our community like to ‘plan ahead’ – it can make life with COPD a bit easier to deal with when things are set up in advance. We appreciate your input.
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • lizzanne
    2 years ago

    I wear a personal air purifier around my neck while on an airplane or any situation requiring being in crowded situations…It is rechargeable and looks like a piece of digital jewelry I have also “blinged it up at times…It works very well …my kids call it my cootie catcher..lol.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi lizzanne and thanks for your comments regarding your personal air purifier. it’s good to hear you found something that works so well for you and are even able to ‘accessorize’ it when you’re out in public. Pretty cool idea!!
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • Roger
    2 years ago

    We have a go bag ready at all times with chargers,meds,clothes and toiletries for the grab and go situations that pop up in life these days. Also one of my wife’s talents is sewing, So I have my own go everywhere personal bag for my meds and other small personal items like credit cards and identifications.
    As I am in late stage 3 of COPD being prepared is a must.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi Roger and thanks for your comments. A ‘go bag’ is a great way to be prepared at all times. In view of your positive views of ‘go bags’, I thought you might find it helpful to look over this article by one of our team members, Janet Plank. She refers to a ‘go bag as well: (see item #9 in this article:) https://copd.net/living/in-the-summertime/.
    A large part of this article (also by Janet), is about ‘go bags’ as well: https://copd.net/living/tidbits-for-cold-weather-at-home-away/.
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • Casey Hribar moderator
    2 years ago

    Awesome, Roger! Thanks for sharing! -Casey, COPD.net Team

  • Frantique
    2 years ago

    Since I take a lot of medicines, having them sorted in a pill box and ready for each daily time was a big help and I didn’t have to carry all those pill bottles.

  • Casey Hribar moderator
    2 years ago

    Excellent! Thanks for sharing, Frantique! -Casey, COPD.net Team

  • Judu
    2 years ago

    I’ve bought a battery operated nebulizer .which I can do anywhere . I never need to look for plug ins any more. I can even nebulize on the airplane if necessary.

  • Casey Hribar moderator
    2 years ago

    Nice! Thanks for sharing, Judu! -Casey, COPD.net Team

  • charli
    2 years ago

    I try to always plan extra time for getting ready, gathering my portable oxygen, cell phone, inhaler, etc. and travel time. I find if I start to rush I get anxious and SOB so this extra time allows me to stop for a minute or two if I need to and if not once I am ready to walk out the door and there’s still time, I sit and relax and go over my plans for the outing. I remind myself that the tortoise won the race, not the hare and I can accomplish even if it is at a slower pace.

  • Casey Hribar moderator
    2 years ago

    What a great perspective and way to handle the potential stressors of traveling! Thanks for sharing with us! -Casey, COPD.net Team

  • fran17
    2 years ago

    I found slowing down so hard. I do some yoga stretches to start the day that focus on opening the lungs. I do this whist looking out of my window at the lovely view I’m blessed with. I tell myself that i will be ok. If it’s a going out day I give myself heaps of time. Being mindful and doing one thing at a time is something I should have learned years ago! I’m lucky I’m still able to get about with the help of O2 so I’m grateful for that.

  • Casey Hribar moderator
    2 years ago

    Yes! Love this, Fran17! Especially the yoga! What a healthful activity for both the mind and body! Thanks for sharing with us! -Casey, COPD.net Team

  • Cheryl1234
    2 years ago

    Just try to plan ahead. No more spur of the moment to run to the store, go out for dinner,go see a friend. Everything must be planned

  • Casey Hribar moderator
    2 years ago

    Definitely, Cheryl1234! So true! Thanks for sharing! -Casey, COPD.net Team

  • Mendo Bruce
    2 years ago

    Having my pulse oximeter, a supply of oxygen adequate to cover any delays or emergencies and my rollator to carry everything makes travelling much easier.

    I also enjoy extra confidence having my exacerbation “Action kit” (Z pac antibiotics and 5 doses of 40mg prednisone) with me.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi Mendo Bruce – you seem to have a good system in place for keeping your COPD while traveling under control. No doubt this helps to reduce emergency situations for yourself and keeps your condition stable when you’re traveling.
    Thanks for sharing your experiences with our online community.
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • epic69361
    2 years ago

    I think the hardest thing to is to take that first step to go out that door, but i do it daily. I will not let COPD get the best of me. The one thing that makes traveling easier for me is to take it slow and to listen to my body. When it gets tired I stop, otherwise it just gets harder and there is no fun in being out. I’m on oxygen 24/7 and wish i could afford an Inogen but for me tanks from my supplier work.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi epic69361 and thanks for your post. Now that you’ve taken that ‘first step’ daily, it’s clear you’ve overcome what you view as the biggest obstacle – that is excellent! And the fact that you stay attuned to your body signals, you seem to have a good system that works very well for yourself. Thanks so much for sharing your experiences with the community. Keep up the good work!
    Leon (site moderator)

  • Milomom1505
    2 years ago

    I am not letting copd get the best of me. On bad days, I do what I can and try to walk for 20 minutes. On good days I celebrate the day. My favorite place to visit is Disney world. I take my granddaughters one at a time. It’s just a grandma and me trip. Sometimes it’s their first airplane flight. We have a fantastic time.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi Milomom and thanks for your comment. Being able to walk for 20 minutes on a ‘bad day’ is a great accomplishment. Staying active is a key to dealing successfully with COPD when you are able to do it. Taking your grandchildren to Disneyland for some individualized ‘grandma and me’ time must be quite a cherished memorable event for each of them (and you!)
    Thanks for sharing!
    Leon (site moderator)

  • Denisefioritto
    2 years ago

    The best thing I can do for myself when traveling either around town or away from home is rather than allowing myself to become anxious if I feel myself starting to get SOB or fatigued is just stop. Sit. Replay my mantra in my head. “Slow down you breathing, you are okay. Focus on watching people, distract yourself”. And so when I do this it completely changes my mindset and I forget that I was having troubles! Works like a charm so far for me. For a few toward I was totally sruxk in fight or flight mode and this “talk” that I have with myself has really help es me get out of that mode! Please try it. Talk to yourself. Focus on something that catches your eye. Sit. For as lonf as you need to. Hope this helps someone! Love and easy breathing to all.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi Denisefioritto – changing your focus seems to work extremely well for you and that’s good to hear. Thanks for sharing your idea with the community.
    Warmly,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • Jay
    2 years ago

    The ‘breathing metronome’ ap that I have installed on my iPhone. Wherever I am, whenever my breathing gets raggedy or distressed I can start this, synchronise my breathing, calm down and restore mental and physical equilibrium. It also helps that I appear to be ‘doing something’ on my phone which stops well-wishing, but intrusive, passers-by asking if everything is alright.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    That ‘breathing metronome’ is a sensational idea, o45400 and one I hadn’t heard of before. I’m sure it will prove to be valuable to our community members too! In fact, I see that Gayle has already commented positively about it. (Thanks, Gayle!)
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • Gayle
    2 years ago

    Love the idea of the breathing metronome app!

  • Lizzy
    2 years ago

    The one thing and the most important item when traveling and on the go is oxygen and water.
    Recently I was in the hospital for punmonia, stay 2 weeks trying to get rid of the infection, right now I am trying anything to get me well. I’ve had COPD for 12 years and I am not ready to give up everything, especially traveling! My husband go to Michigan in August every year, we love it, this little set back is not going to stop me.
    Dena July 12, 2017

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    That’s the spirit, Lizzy. Glad to hear you plan on overcoming this this new development. We wish you all the best,
    Leon
    (site moderator)

  • babeboomer
    2 years ago

    Even though I am not on oxygen at the present time, just knowing I have my portable oxygen machine (my Inogen 3) with me in the car, my cell phone and my Pulse Oximeter in my purse, helps very much to get rid of the anxiety I sometimes suddenly feel when I leave my home.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi babeboomer and thanks for your comment. If that is what helps you to reduce your anxiety, keep at it! It sounds like it goes a long way towards helping you to leave the house with more confidence.
    All the best,
    Leon (site moderator)

  • April E.
    2 years ago

    Relaxing my standards to function better even on short day trips was probably one of the more challenging things over the past 17 years. I changed baths to showers (short) and only every other day. On the no shower day, I eat very light. Usually 1/2 cup or less of nuts, a cup of tea and my meds. Then I head out early with a stomach that is not too full. This routine enables me to get my groceries and gas; or whatever else I need to do and still breathe pretty well till about 2pm or so. By then I am very hungry and usually back home. Hope this helps someone to feel ok about changing one of their life-long standards too. Go slow – no rushing. 🙂

  • Jenn Patel
    2 years ago

    Thanks so much for sharing your ideas with the community, April E.! You certainly sound like you have a fabulous approach to dealing with this challenge, and we really appreciate your providing us with insight about it. I love that you had the courage to change some life-long standards – that’s huge! So glad it works for you and so glad you’re here. Best, Jenn (COPD.net Team)

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