A few weeks ago, I wrote about planning happy moments amid the storms. I shared my excitement about a planned trip to San Diego with my husband.
The city, my “little piece of heaven,” is one of my favorite places to be. Maybe the place is special to me because our journey as newlyweds began there when my husband was stationed at Coronado Island.
As we planned our visit, I was longing for the sunny San Diego weather and its beautiful beaches.
Though I have positive memories of San Diego, being in the city brought reminders of my life before my pulmonary hypertension (PH) diagnosis. While living there, I had no limitations of my physical capabilities. For example, I could walk a few blocks to the laundromat while carrying heavy bags without suffering the consequences of overdoing it. Now, I can’t complete this simple task without assistance.
On this trip, we did some sightseeing, taking in a tour of the historic Hotel del Coronado. I love this place, but the cost of staying here is outside my budget. We visited some ground floor areas and its magnificent surroundings. The hotel is currently undergoing restoration but continues to operate as usual.
The place was busy with tourists from around the world. The property and its private beach are stunning, and a bonus was that the attraction is easy to navigate.
California is one of the most accessible-friendly states I have visited. Handicapped-accessible parking is widely available. The sidewalks are wide and free of clutter. I discovered some adaptive adventure resources I intend to explore on my next trip.
Many of the area’s public beaches offer beach wheelchairs. Mission Beach provides free motorized and manual beach wheelchairs for those with disabilities. Motorized chairs can’t be taken into the water, but manual chairs can. While I did not avail of a beach chair on this trip, I have used a manual one on a previous visit.
This trip, I had a goal for my hubby to push me down to the shore on a special sand wheelchair mat, and I would walk to the water using my oxygen. And I did it, walking hand in hand with my husband into the ocean. I live for these moments of joy.
The excitement did not end there. I met with an old PH friend I call “Moma Hen.” We met on a PH chat about 12 years ago. Our kids were close in age and we formed a close bond. She came to visit us in Texas once and stayed for several days. I was delighted to see her again.
We drove for about an hour to meet her at a location convenient to both of us. She brought her sister and baby granddaughter to meet me. We had a wonderful time catching up while enjoying yummy Mexican food. PH can present us with seemingly insurmountable challenges, but we make some incredible friends along the way. Bonding with others who are going through some of the same struggles brings us comfort. My PH friends hold a special place in my heart.
Living with PH can be depressing and isolating. Setting aside time to spend with friends and loved ones is essential. I look forward to more happy moments like these.
Note: Pulmonary Hypertension News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Pulmonary Hypertension News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to pulmonary hypertension.