How to travel before time runs out?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Kenneth in NC, Jan 3, 2005.

  1. Kenneth in NC

    Kenneth in NC Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    806
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Location:
    NC
    Recently I found out that I have Congestive Heart Failure on top of other health conditions. While the Doctor assured me that CHF is not a 100% death sentence He also said if I wanted do to anything I might better do it in the next 6-12 months. That sounds like my time is limited.

    MY WISH To travel all over the United States in a EarthRoamer Camper showing my daughter all the places I've seen before she was born.

    THE OBSTACLE Lot's of debt, no cash flow and Don't own a EarthRoamer camper.

    My situation has worsened over the past 11 months. My health has deteriorated and with out my cash influx our credit card debt blossomed. My wife works 2nd shift and I take care of my 10-year old.

    The trip would mean a lot to my daughter because she has heard the stories but has no visual or real time experience of places like Deadwood SD, Grand Canyon, Ely NV, Stone Mountain GA, or the multitude of places I 4-wheeled into back in the '80's. We always planned on taking a long trip when she graduated high school. This new situation alters that plan.

    There's probably nothing you guys can do but I thought verbalizing it might help.
     
  2. FolioMark

    FolioMark In Remembrance

    Messages:
    1,436
    Joined:
    May 10, 2002
    Location:
    illinois but i have a homestead building in missou
    Ken I have had CHF for 20 years and my health is better now than it ever was.
    When I was diagnosed my BP was 220 over 180 and I lost 32 pounds in 24 hours on a diuretic. Within a few months it was controlled by medication and has been ever since. My BP last week was 120 over 80 and has been such for years now. Hopefully your doctor will be able to control yours with medication and diet and you will have many many good years to enjoy life. I will certainly say a prayer to that effect. Take the time to be with your daughter regardless of your health concerns but dont just write yourself off either. I hope your condition is not as bad as you think. :)
     

  3. inc

    inc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    232
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2004
    you wont want to hear this, but never say die. my father gave up. try the meds and diet- try anything, but i would check with the previous poster for advice.
     
  4. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,859
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2002
    Location:
    central idaho republic
    CHF ? get a third opinion..... and eliminate the stress from your life, I understand all about stress and how it can make a person sick with symptoms of other illnesses showing up and baffling the medicos ......

    Anyhow folks will add you to a prayer list over this, and with prayer all things get the appropriate attention.

    Reminds me of the old fella whose doctor told him that he had a year or so to live, so he bought a bar in Montana, drank a fifth of whiskey a day for 20 years, outlived his doctor...... and another fella that his doctor told him he had about a year to live so he bought 3 acres, planted apple trees for his grandkids to enjoy after he was gone.... 20 years later he was asked what his doctor thought .... that doctor was gone 15 years before that......

    just because they got a degree in medicine dont mean they are right all the time otherwise they would not call it MEDICAL PRACTICE it would be perfect.

    William
     
  5. inc

    inc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    232
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2004
    "just because they got a degree in medicine dont mean they are right all the time "

    you are soooo right! i lived thru 16 years of severe chronic pain because of a misdiagnosis by the doctors at a respected hospital. finally i found a doctor who would do a surgery that i had been seeking from the original doctors from day 1 (gee- dont i have a CHOICE in my own treatment? up north, apparently not)
    had i had the surgery, 10 of those years wouldnt have been bad ones.

    do check into the alternatives, as NO doctor is trained to cure your problem, only control it thru drugs. and maybe, concentrate on ONE trip, not all- take it one trip to one destination (grand canyon?)at a time and maybe you will get what you need most, time together. i certainly didnt get that with mY father, except the day before he died. ONE DAY.
    try to get your friends to watch the local airfares and travel agencies( there are supoosed to be sales on such things, probably websites) and forget the camper. let someone else do the driving, you rest. who knows waht will turn up
     
  6. Oilpatch197

    Oilpatch197 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    700
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    Location:
    SouthEastern Illinois
    I don't go to Quack Doctors.

    I wouldn't travel, you say your in Debt right?

    Your right, there is Nothing I can do, I can't help you, but I can say this, you've been to all those places, seen all the mighty stuff the Lord has made here on Earth, but when the second coming comes comes, all those things will you no longer remember, we serve a awesome God and when Jesus comes, you better be prepared, cause when he comes with great glory and anger, there will be no time to prepare, you must be born again, in the straight/narrow path, you must seek forgiveness of your sins, you must get in the ark, BEFORE the door is shut!

    http://www.overcomerministry.org/listen_live.htm

    the first thing you do is MANAGE your money, pay off your debts, quit going to the doctors, belive in the Lord, because Satan has no control over death, that is in the power of Father, and if you stop taking medicine, and stop going to the doctors, and Fast, and pray, and get right with God, try to eat right, God can do mighty things, the worst thing you can do is not belive in the Lord Jesus.
     
  7. BobBoyce

    BobBoyce Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    313
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2004
    Location:
    SE TN/SW NC
    Hello Kenneth

    I was diagnosed with CHF a few years ago and told I may have 6 months left. It was a close call there, but working with my doctor and trying various meds, we finally hit on something that seemed to work. I'm still around, and am able to stay off of the oxygen most of the time. I do sleep better with it however, but mainly because I also have sleep apnea (sp).

    Bob
     
  8. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    11,301
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    Location:
    So Cal Mtns
    Many people live full and rather good lives after getting CHF.Watch for fluid gain closely.Daily weight every morning upon rising after urinating,a gain of 2 lbs in day or 2 would concern me,I personally would be getting that amount of fluid gain off me FAST,thats a very PROACTIVE response,not wait around because"I have a Drs appt. in 10 days",a very bad response. Any increasing shortness of breath get to your MD ASAP.Watch your calves and ankles closely for swelling,telltale sign of fluid overload,which is what CHF is,fluid overload(Simplified explanation).

    It is a managable disease in an awful lot of cases.Get WELL EDUCATED on the subject.The folks who do well are very proactive in the diseases management,passive folks who think the docs can do it all and dont get deeply involved monitoring themselves do poorly.YOU must take charge in monitoring your condition very closely,daily.Your job is to prevent a chronic condition from going acute and overwhelming you.Become an EXPERT on CHF,it will pay off.

    That said,I also dont know the condition of your heart(ventricular function,enlargement),lungs,kidneys,etc.So I cant say the Dr is neccesarily wrong in the time assessment he gave you.I wouldnt rate a diagnosis of CHF as an immediate death sentence, in most cases Ive seen its a chronic condition that tends to shorten the lifespan to late fifties,maybe 60s,some folks even go on much longer.Lots of factors are involved re:time of diagnosis and aggravating factors,ie,obesity,diabetes,etc.

    Maybe Doc is trying to tell you live every day as your last,because it might be,who knows?Giving you a heads up to get things in order,just in case an acute episode were to do you in?I just dont know about that.There is no telling when that acute episode of CHF is going to occur.Which it will eventually if something else doesnt get you.

    Get a CHF education NOW,that will really help.Good luck to you.

    BooBoo
     
  9. Country Lady

    Country Lady Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    3,842
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2003
    Location:
    MS
    I'll share my husband's experience. This might not be for you, but so far, for the time being it's been a good decision for him. My husband was diagnosed with congestive heart failure and was in really bad shape. He was fifty-seven at the time. His cardiologist suggested that he be evaluated for heart transplant. This thought terrified us both initially, but soon came to the realization that this was our only hope of him getting any better. He went through the evaluation and qualified. Within four months from the time he started his evaluation, he had the heart transplant. He went through some difficult times in the beginning, but now two years later, he has some limitations, but is able to most anything he wants to do. He has shown no signs of rejection. Of course, he take lots of meds and will have to the rest of his life. We thank God each day for giving us this blessing of more time, and we are so grateful for a family somewhere that gave of their loved ones organ so that my husband lives. I felt compelled after reading this thread, to share his experience.

    Country Lady
     
  10. antiquestuff

    antiquestuff Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    752
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2004
    I hope it all comes out okay for you-I don't have much I can say, other than get another opinion, and don't get too stressed out. Stress is terrible.......watch what you eat too-avoid modern, overly-processed foods. They are deadly in the long run. Eat well, it may help a lot with many things.......bad food causes a lot of problems, whether you have a disease or not, so eat well-it should help some. Watch your diet.

    Doctors make LOTS of mistakes-I have many memories of their mistakes.........almost lost vision in one eye because of a quack! Claimed it was just a cold, gave me eye drops that REALLY hurt, went to an eye specialist a week later, glad I did........there was a huge scratch on the eye! I was losing vision bit by bit with the drops that stupid doctor gave me.........I feel sorry for anyone he treats...........he was a pediatrition......not many nice things can be said about him........that was about 10 years ago, though........
     
  11. Ozarks_1

    Ozarks_1 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    250
    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2003
    Location:
    Ark. Ozark Mtns. (Marion County)
    DEFINITELY get a second or third opinion!
    Be careful of what medications the docs prescribe. I'm one of the few who medications have the generally opposite effect on - I tossed all the prescription stuff in the trash and gone completely herbal.

    A year and a half ago I had 2 strokes and a major heart attack in a period of 10 days - the docs said I wasn't going to live. Well, 30 days after being admitted to the hospital, I WALKED - not had my butt wheeled out in a wheelchair - out of that hospital!
     
  12. Darren

    Darren Still an :censored:

    Messages:
    14,763
    Joined:
    May 10, 2002
    Location:
    Back in the USA
    My mother had congestive heart failure and an enlarged heart. She blew her lungs out by smoking for fifty years. By that time her lungs had screwed up her heart. That was about five years ago. She doesn't get much excercise because she has no "wind." The interesting thing in the past few years when she's been mostly sitting in a chair, her heart healed itself. It's no longer enlarged. Nor does she have congestive heart failure.

    Figure out what caused the problem. If it's diet or smoking related, etc. Stop it or change what caused the problem. Rather than buy into the "death is on the way" scenario and try to make the best of your remaining days, make the decision that you didn't get a death sentence. Don't fall for the "expert" said this so the future is written crap. Don't give up!
     
  13. fellini123

    fellini123 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,550
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2003
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    I was diagnosed with CHF in 1996. I had an ejection factor of 8%. Normal is between 85% to 100%. 8% is unheard of. Everyone figured I was not long for this world. I was also put on the transplant list, did the work ups, and wass accepted. But......with few medications, a little time and rest and they decided I was to healthy for a transplant!! live a very full and active life. I have no restrictions. I raise and show dogs, big dogs. I run around the ring with them!!
    I travel all the time, life is good!!
    I do get tired more easily than I used to, but that is what naps are for!!!
    Alice in Virginia
     
  14. ajaxlucy

    ajaxlucy Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    3,799
    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2004
    Location:
    Indiana
    Kenneth, did your doctor estimate how severe your CHF is? What stage or class? (For an explanation of the stages, you might check out chfpatients.com). Some people can do a lot of normal things and live for decades; some can't travel without an ambulance. If you feel well enough now to travel around the country without supplemental oxygen while taking care of a child, you may be around to enjoy life for many more years.
     
  15. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    11,301
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    Location:
    So Cal Mtns
    I think a normal ejection fraction(E.F.) in a strong heart is 50-75%.Many many folks are doing just fine with 35-45% as they age.

    Your EF of 8 percent is amazing :eek: ! You are definitely one of the folks who wasnt expected to survive,Kudus to you Alice! :worship:

    Lowest Ive ever seen was 12-15 %,patient died.

    Back to you Kenneth,are you seeing a trend here? You may be in better shape than you think,do you know your EF? Have you been hospitlized with CHF and had a life threatening episode?

    Ken,sure hoping the best for you and your family.Will say a prayer too,it really can help,seen it.BTW,for some reasons when the Nuns pray for you,it really is effective,a 'professional courtesy',I dont know,but I want Nuns praying for me when Im sick.Im not Catholic either.But man can those ladies pray.Im serious and not being a smart alec either,in case this sounds so.

    BooBoo
     
  16. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

    Messages:
    7,102
    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Location:
    In beautiful downtown Sticks, near Belleview, Fl.
    I am walking around here dead also but refuse to fall down with CHF type 4. 17 pills per day, this morning my van broke down and I walked over 1/2 mile to get toa phone with no problems, and walked back also. Just had a stint installed a couple of weeks back. Avoid cigarettes, alcohol, doomday doctors,and especually anywhite food, short term carbs. Such as rice, white bread, potatoes, bleached flour, or fried foods. Since I was diagnosed 7 years back they told me to only exercise to a tolerance level, since then I have worked feeding 57 horses per day, tractor mowing, handleing hay, ect. Any swelling of the ankles is a TODAY-NOW alarm, as is a bright golden color of cycled body fluids. Like mentioned above, get yourself a professional grade of scales, weigh yourself each and every day to monitor if there is fluid build up. After the start of treatment I went from 317 to 286 in 4 days. If your a veteran of a conflict era, you may be eligable for VA treatment and meds.
     
  17. rio002

    rio002 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    459
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2002
    Location:
    WA
    Just adding one more hopeful story to the others listed: My step dad was diagnosed with CHF 14 years ago (given 3-4 years to live), plus he has only one kidney (horse accident), the bottom two chambers of his heart are 4 time the size they should, irregular heart beat, and lung scarring from being in an iron lung for a full month when he had polio as a teenager--said he'd never walk again. This man is now 70 years old, takes his meds but is about 50lbs overweight, and eats everything he shouldn't and then some, but he still works half the year, rides his motorcycle, plays with his grandkids etc. Remember attitude is very important in healing, staying positive is better than some prescriptions. Your in our prayers, and there are some great deals on renting motorhomes for traveling everywhere, or check to see about renting one via an ad in paper could be cheaper. But you know when my Dad was diagnosed with cancer (didn't see it coming, no time for planning and very little time to say what needed to be said)we would have killed to just have one day with him other than the 19 we were given after the diagnosis. It may put your mind at ease to get your affairs in order, write out a timeline of your life to give your daughter as part of lineage, make her video tape of you retelling her the stories she's heard before and new ones'. I hold very special a tape of my father from 85' reading the directions from an Amway meeting with friends at our old house, I can hear his voice, his laugh with others including my Moms' etc. it's a way to revisit his memory.
     
  18. Kenneth in NC

    Kenneth in NC Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    806
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Location:
    NC
    O.K. Maybe you can help :eek:

    I don't smoke, drink alcohol or do drugs, never have.
    I have type 2 diabetes sugar runs 400 a lot of days.
    CHF don't know the level if I was told it went in one ear and out the other.
    Sleep apnea Stop breathing often during the night.
    Obesity 5' 11" tall 378.8 pounds
    High blood pressure. was 149-89 pulse 109 this morning.

    Fluid (weight) I gained 10 pounds in 3 days after running out of the Lasic pills.

    I attribute the obesity to taking insulin. I gained 188 pounds after starting Insulin. After research I find that Actos promotes fluid build up. Norvasc my High blood med is a Calcium blocker.

    Current meds:
    Norvasc 10mg one daily
    Glucovance 5/500 four pills daily
    Actos 45mg one daily
    Humalog Insulin 175 units daily
    Lasic 40mg one daily


    Since this started I've began a herbal routine of:
    Acetyl-L-Carnitine 500mg one daily
    CoQ-10 50mg one daily
    Omega 3 Fish Oil 1000mg one daily
    Vitamin C 500mg two daily

    The doctor dropped the CHF bombshell in front of my wife and daughter that in itself made it more traumatic.

    By all means Pray for me, light a candle or whatever your religion allows. I'm trying to keep a positive outlook but right this minute it's a bit dark in my corner.

    Kenneth in NC

    p.s. Not a vet moonpups
     
  19. diane

    diane Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,983
    Joined:
    May 4, 2002
    Location:
    South Central Michigan
    Kenneth, sorry to hear of your problems. I don't want to sound harsh, but your life depends on it. Please don't blame your obesity on the insulin. Obesity results from taking in more calories than you are using. Do you want to live? How bad? Diet, take your meds and exercise. You can do it.

    Are they monitoring your potassium levels? That lasix dose would deplete your potassium. Sleep apnea is more prevalent in obese people.

    I will pray for you Kenneth............I will pray that you find the power to do what you need to do to save your life!!
     
  20. Kenneth in NC

    Kenneth in NC Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    806
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Location:
    NC
    NO Diane my Doctor seems to be to busy to schedule me in. Is there a home test to monitor potassium?

    Kenneth in NC