Holidaying is possible!

Holidaying is possible!

Since this disease brings so much suffering and sadness, I thought that I bring a ray of sunshine, and fight the disease back in my own way by writing that it is still possible to get away and enjoy yourself!

A few years ago I started holidaying with my parents again, mainly because my mum wouldn't have been able to cope on holiday alone with dad, but also because I wanted to create as many happy memories as possible with dad having the illness, rather than only remembering the times pre-diagnosis.

Last year we managed a holiday to Egypt. We stayed in a resort called El Gouna - very flat and suitable for a wheelchair. We rented an apartment with a pool (v cheap in Egypt), which was perfect as we no longer like to be in hotels where people gawp and stare.

It was fantastically hot and relaxing, and just what both my mum, as a full-time carer, and my dad needed. It gave me a sense of purpose and control as well - I was there with my parents, helping them and spending quality time with them.

During the day we would sit by the pool, and dad would snooze on a sun-lounger in the shade. We would order delicious take-aways for lunch, and then shower early evening and go either to the marina or downtown area for dinner.

The reason I write is so that others know that it is certainly not impossible to holiday after diagnosis. Even cheap carriers such as EasyJet are very good with dealing with wheelchair passengers, and AgeConcern supply holiday insurance for people with illness. With us we took dad's wheelchair and a toilet surround as the main aids for him, and we coped very well! Baby monitors helped too once dad had gone to bed and mum and I were enjoying a glass of wine in the lounge or on the terrace.

However, I do realise that this is only a short-term 'escape' from the mundanity of daily life, but it really gave us collectively something to look forward to, and then remember fondly after we returned. Dad always seems more spritely after we return, and mum more relaxed.

Good luck to anyone who chooses to do this, and if you need any information, please do not hesitate to ask and I will try my best to answer!

Love to all, Marisa x

6 Replies

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  • Hi Marisa

    Your post makes very interesting reading. We have considered holidays abroad since my husband's diagnosis but it would be quite difficult unless I had someone else to help. My hubby gets a little anxious when he's out of his "comfort zone" but what you did sounds idyllic. It certainly has given me something to think about.

    Take care.............SuzieQ xx

  • Thanks for this Marisa; it takes a little more planning and forethought but it is good to know there are 'cans' as well as 'can'ts'. Sis is going to the beach with Mum and Dad for the day next week and I went to Worthing for the day with them back in April. I am hoping this will build confidence and that perhaps a weekend away with support will be the next step.

  • I forgot to mention that Holiday Rentals is the site that we use for choosing an apartment. On the site you can filter on accommodation with wheelchair access, and contact the owners for further information.

    Indeed it took planning and research, but not vast amounts more than I would spend on any other holiday - it is doable!

    We started in the UK first, a long weekend in Cornwall. We stayed in a place with a disabled bathroom and took everything that we needed in the car.

    I hope that it inspires confidence for even a day-trip!

    Also, we sometimes go to the theatre to see shows - dad loves singing along to musicals! Carers go half-price usually, and they have access telephone lines, so it's worth investigating.

    Start small and you don't know where you'll end up!

  • hi marisa

    the holiday ideias sound great

    i have psp and am happy just to go away in thsi country - for a few days at a time

    i should love to go to Europe again but felt insurance / strange country / flights / unknown bedroomsb etc difficult to undertake

    bUT i shall think of it now

    htanks for your positive thoughts- we really need them on the site

    luv jill

  • Hi Marisa.....My husband Frank & I went on a cruise to the Norwegian Fjords a few weeks ago with P & O. We had an adapted cabin...actually a balcony stateroom which was the only one available when we booked....with a wetroom ...grab rails the lot. All adapted cabins are half the size again of an ordinary cabin so there's plenty of room. Although we enjoyed the cruise it was hard work for me as I was caring for him literally 24/7. The crew & also other passengers were really helpful. It won't be the last holiday we take but I think the next one will be a villa for the whole family so I can have a rest too.

    We had intended dining in the cabin a lot but decided to venture into the restaurants quite often asking for a table for two on the edges where there was more room for me to sit by Frank to help feed him. They were very accommodating.

    The really tiring part of the journey was the drive to Southampton from Manchester. We had no trouble with travel insurance..we use Saga & have done the last few holidays.

    There is life outside home.

    Take care & try to keep smiling. Love Hazel B xx

  • Hi would anyone have a recommendation for a disabled break abroad somewhere where they had hoists and things? Dad is at the stage now where he cannot weight bear and has to be transferred from chair to bed to toilet etc with a 'turner' - which is of course too heavy to travel. Does anyone know of any companies where this is all set up? We thought of Mallorca apartments with disabled access holidays but my dad would not be able to do the 2 hour transfer from the airport. We need something very simple and easily connected. I'm determined that my mum and dad get some use out of my dad's recently renewed passport!!! I just want them to have a bit of a 'normal' life back and think it's so unfair that they can't enjoy their time together any more in hotels wherever and whenever they want. I so want to help them and take them on a 'relaxing' holiday - as much as it can be!!

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