Tuesday, 20 March 2012

CF has got a brand new bag...

The practicalities surrounding living with CF is something that comes naturally as you get older and used to your routine. When I was discharged from hospital I had a few new drugs to get used to. First of all was my new dinner mate, my insulin pen (and the needles with which to administer it!). Secondly, my anti-anxiety medication to stave off panic attacks. The final new addition is pain relief, only bog-standard paracetamol and codeine, but imperative to take regularly to tackle chest pain. This is on top the digestive enzymes I take to enable me to fully digest my food and an inhaler should I become tight chested when out and about.

My Little Stash!
Before I got particularly ill with CF, leaving the house was easy, simply grab a pot of Creon and an inhaler, chuck it into my handbag and I was good to go! Being diagnosed with CF related diabetes (CFRD) added another sheet of tablets to the mix, but it was still manageable, notwithstanding the various pots of Creon and sheets of Repaglinide (the drug I used to take to control my diabetes) that were littered across the houses of my family and friends! The addition of the extra drugs made me reconsider how I managed leaving the house. I didn’t want to be running around searching for various pots of medication – I don’t have the breath to do that these days anyway! So I decided that I needed to become organised! You may think that being a teacher I would have a fairly organised nature – unfortunately for me, my professional organisational skills don’t translate that effectively into my everyday life! The palliative care nurse I met in hospital pointed out that it’s all very well having my anti-anxiety medication, but totally useless if I’m out shopping and feel I’m about to have a panic attack and the tablets are sitting at home! 

Luke had the brilliant idea of getting a little bag which could be for the sole purpose of my drugs. After much searching, I found the perfect little bag in TK Maxx. All my drugs fit inside and it fits perfectly into my three main handbags... It is, after all, a woman’s prerogative to have many bags!  It also has a nifty little strap so that I can simply take it out on its own if I’m only going to either mine or Luke’s parents for tea. Although a little orange bag may not sound like a great medical revolution, finding and using this little bag has really helped me get out and about more easily and without potentially putting my health in any sort of jeopardy. Whilst I have to live with my ‘end-stage’ CF, I am determined not to let it rule me. Therefore anything I can implement to limit its impact on my life – even if it’s just the use of a little orange bag, is a small victory in retaining my independence! 
Convenient sections...
Look how pretty it is...

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