Big floppy hat—check!
SPF ONE MILLION—double check!
Three doses of Rebif, alcohol wipes, Ibuprofen, and a hope and a prayer the resort has a Sharps container onsite—check!
Well hello! I apologize for the short hiatus in entries—I was on my belated honeymoon! I had every intention of posting from Maui, but between our packed schedule, the majesty all around us, and the intoxicating ocean breeze, I barely even remembered to pause and administer my medication.
A Hawaiian vacation has been a dream of mine since I was very, very young. My love affair with anything Hawaiian stems from my 9th birthday party—a combined birthday party for a friend (whose father, incidentally, had Multiple Sclerosis) and me. It was an amazing party with thought to the smallest detail. A friend of my mom’s and a member of a Hawaiian/Tahitian/Polynesian dance troupe came to give our friends a hula lesson. That was all I needed to propel me into Hawai’iphilehood. My intense and all-immersive obsession with Elvis Presley only amplified it. I joined the Junior Hawaiian dance troupe and performed with them for a few years and I’ve so badly wanted to visit the motherland ever since.
In planning our honeymoon as a (somewhat) responsible adult, I was a little skeptical about spending a week in tropical paradise. As I’ve mentioned before, one factor that can greatly impact the severity of MS symptoms is temperature extremes (particularly heat), so I was a little concerned about some of our plans and the amount of time we’d be in the sun (which then also translates to the amount of time it takes to recover after expending so much energy to regulate body temperature—in hot or cold). We wanted to maximize our time in Hawaii, so despite not doing everything we wanted to do on our inaugural trip, we were on the go from 6 or 7am until 10 or 11pm every single day we were there. That raised a few cautionary flags for me, as well. Because of the holidays, it was recommended we book almost everything in advance. Hawaii doesn’t have an off-season in tourism, so EV.ER.Y.THING is expensive—what if I was too fatigued to participate in some of the activities that we had planned (and paid for!)?
As it turned out, my lu’aus were not lu-“OW”s at all. I felt amazing. I felt strong. In snorkeling with sea turtles to sharing some immediate ocean space with whales (another lifelong dream come true!) to watching the sunset and shooting stars above the clouds on the summit of the world’s largest dormant volcano, I felt grounded and humbled, but also limitless. Other than a minimal amount of exhaustion after a day of over-exertion, a byproduct of snorkeling, my energy levels were up and the most consistent they’ve been in years and I didn’t have any other obvious symptoms. Maybe there really is something to the Vitamin D and stress management aspects of MS.
I don’t have anything insightful to say to end this blog entry–just wanted to share :).
And now: Just a *few* photos (click to enlarge)!