A road trip with a difference……

This week’s step outside my comfort zone involved a road trip along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria, Australia. It was such an amazing trip and involved some incredible scenery. I could literally move there tomorrow!
I had to make some modifications to allow for those hours sitting in the car (but some cushions and a heat pack helped immensely!) due to my pain. Such a small price to pay for the trip I had. Wouldn’t have missed it for the world!
The trip saw us arrive in at Melbourne Airport, driving to Geelong, and along to Apollo bay where we stayed. I have to say that Apollo Bay was simply stunning to wake up in.
GeelongRoad sign
Apollo bay

 

 

 

 

 

We then travelled along the Great Ocean Road further to Port Fairy and back again. The Twelve Apostles were as stunning as they always look in photos and anyone will tell you big scenery that makes me feel tiny is my thing.

Twelve apostles    Twelve apostles 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Before long we were trekking back across to catch the ferry to Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsula. It was such an amazing day and the ferry trip itself was gorgeous. As we came towards Sorrento we had such beautiful views of the beaches with their little colourful beach huts.

Ferry to Sorrento
We stayed overnight and tried some amazing natural hot springs there (gave me an incredible reduced night of pain and best sleep! Tip for those chronic pain-ers out there.). We hired a private one and were lead up to a simple bath built into the ground and closed off with trees and natural fencing. It was heaven.

 

Up to Melbourne city where we explored everything….and I mean everything! Hosier Lane with its constantly updating graffiti art, the Laneways, Rod Laver Arena and MCG, Little Italy, and some amazing restaurants and bars. The little tapas restaurant in Hosier Lane was incredible!

IMG_0259 IMG_0266 IMG_0267

Laneways Melbourne

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then to the Yarra Valley and it’s beautiful scenery and many vineyards before heading back to the airport to start the trip home.

Yarra Valley
This week I’m grateful for annual leave and creative adaptions to managing pain. 🙂

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12 thoughts on “A road trip with a difference……

  1. I applaud you for having such a positive outlook on life while facing such a difficult illness on a daily basis. I too deal with chronic pain, Fibromyalgia as well as Migraine with aura. I have been having uncontrollable migraines every day for 5 years now, and I also have a condition known as multiple chemical sensitivity that makes taking medications to control my conditions very difficult and in some cases, impossible. Your blog is very inspiring and I look forward to future posts. I can relate to the part about some people being annoyed with you for being so positive about your illness, as I am one of the people who has yet to fully accept my new life. I’m 23 years old, and though I have been dealing with it for many years, being so young I think is making it more difficult to come to terms with the fact that I won’t ever be “normal” again. Of course, I do not think your optimism is annoying in anyway, inspiring and sincere yes, but certainly not annoying. My issues only stem from those who assume that just because some chronic pain patients don’t “look sick” that we must be faking, or that it’s all in our heads. Many of my struggles have come from the difficulties surrounding the stigma of hidden illnesses and what that means for those of us who have to deal with the emotional burdens. It’s taxing not only on our mental bell-being, but it takes it’s on us physically as well. I can only hope that someday I can get to a point in my life such as you have done. May your optimism and passion for life rub off on the rest of us, cause Lord knows there are so many of us out there who could use someone like you in our lives! ❤
    -Amber

    • Hi Amber. I’m glad that you ultimately found my blog/post a positive one. I can understand what you’re saying about the illness being invisible. I was a few years into my pain in my early 20’s and I hadn’t yet adjusted to it. I found it was very restrictive on what I could and couldn’t do, and I was utterly miserable. After trying many different doctors I have found an amazing pain team who are supportive and advocates on my behalf. As my organs start to deteriorate, they help me find ways to live the best quality of life I can and help me manage the pain. Before that I was exhausted at being the only one fighting my corner consistently. It’s taken nearly 15 years to get to the point I’m at, and I guess I don’t want others in a similar situation to have to wait that long. I hope that my blog can continue to be a positive one. Thanks so much for your lovely comments….they put a smile on my face. I admire your strength during everything you’re going through. It’s bloody tough, and you have to pretty hardcore to cope with it all. I’m looking forward to reading more posts from you and following your journey. 🙂

      • I hope you don’t mind my asking, and you don’t have to answer, but if I may what is your illness exactly? You mention chronic pain but I didn’t catch the name of your condition. When you speak of your organs deteriorating, I certainly don’t think of Fibromyalgia, as painful as it is it’s certainly not life threatening.

        I am glad you have the support of your doctors behind you, I am still in the process of finding that support team. While I do have family that supports me, I still have many who don’t even know what I’m going through, and my doctors seem to push it off like it’s nothing. FDA approved medications for fibromyalgia have always given me bad reactions, and although pain medications have proven to work for me, my family doctor is reluctant to prescribe them. Understandably or course, but in the mean time I am miserable on so many days. I have a two year old that I must care for, and maybe if you had any advice on how to go about getting proper treatment for chronic pain I would be open to anything at this point. The only doctors I have ever seen for it are my pediatrician a few years ago, when I was a teen and my current family practitioner. I thank you for any and all information you can provide. I have never had the chance to speak with someone who has been in my shoes and made it to the other side so heroically as you have and I am very excited for this opportunity.

      • Hello again. :). Of course you can ask….I primarily have pudendal neuralgia. But as is often the case it has had an effect on my bowel and bladder which mean they no longer function like they should. It is also consequently putting pressure on my kidneys. My sciatic nerve is also affected and for some new and unknown reason my hip is now inflamed. I’m not really in a position to give advice, but can answer with what I’ve done. In finding the best healthcare, it would largely depend on where you live and what your healthcare system is like. But I learnt part way through my condition that I had to make sure I knew my body and what it hated and what it was saying. I also had to start to be be my own advocate and make sure I chased things up, asked a million questions, and was referred to a different doctor if I felt that one had reached the limit of their expertise. I was a stubborn pain in the ass basically. But it made doctors listen and want to cover every avenue. It’s not in my nature to be like that, but I realised that I had to, and I started to see a change. Eventually I ended up with amazing teams in two countries who I felt supported me. Luckily one was also one of the best in the field and did a lot of research in that area. The other has a pain condition himself and he has endless gruff empathy. My answer would always be to be pushy but not dramatic. But again, this may not work for everyone, and may not suit their situation. Especially of their healthcare system is very different to mine. I think too that I had a very good pain psychologist who helped me work out accepting my pain and adapting to it. Something I’d already started doing on my own but which needed a little tweaking. :). That may be no help at all, and I’m certainly no expert. But I just know what worked for me, and that because of all that I’m a very happy woman with occasional bad days. I’m sure that’s no help at all….I wish I could help you more. It does sound like you’re already pretty strong though to juggle your condition with raising a 2 year old and not having that support that you need yet. You’re already doing an amazing job of coping. 🙂

      • Thank you, that means a lot. But im really not that tough. My healthcare system unfortunately is lacking in many ways, but I do try to make the best of it. I dont see any specialists but maybe I should make a point to do so…makes sense. Its terrible that you have to go through the health issues that you do but wonderful that youre able to cope with them and accept them as you have. And I think you are in the perfect position to give advice, though it may not work for everyone there are people like me who truly appreciate your knowledge and insight. Its so much more meaningful coming from someone who has been in our shoes than from someone who couldnt possibly know how we feel. You are what we aspire to be because you were us at one time and that is inspiring. I thank you truly for your reply.

  2. What an awesome adventure! I am impressed with all you were able to accomplish, despite the pain. I, too, have many trips this year and have already been trying to research how to manage the pain I know will ensue, but it will be worth it! I can’t wait to blog about it and share my experiences with everyone just as you have; thank you!

    • Thanks so much! Yeah I couldn’t bear the thought of giving up exploring/travelling because of the pain. It’s all about the modifications for me! I’m sure if you’re creative enough you’ll manage both. :). Looking forward to hearing about your travels!

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