When it’s vacation time, but someone gets sick

Our little family just returned from another unforgettable vacation in beautiful Kauai.

However, I don’t remember a lot from the first few days as I was undeniably ill.

When I came down with what seemed like a bad stomach bug the day before our trip, my hubby felt that we should cancel our travel plans.

I didn’t have a fever, but I had troublesome stomach symptoms and overall felt achey, chilled and miserable.

However, I didn’t want to cancel our vacation. We had been looking forward to Kauai for many months and our week there was not something that could be rescheduled or postponed. Not to mention the fact that my parents were already on the island waiting for us.

So, I braced myself for an uncomfortable journey and we headed to the airport. I didn’t eat anything for 24 hours prior to travel in order to prevent any possible unpleasantness during the trip. I mostly slept, sipped water and kept to myself during the two long plane rides. I had no energy or strength and all I was good for was napping.

When we arrived in Kauai, I was super low-energy from not eating anything for two days. I continued to mostly not eat for about the first 3-4 days of our trip, so I continued to feel lethargic and sleepy.

I didn’t do a whole lot! I spent a little time in the pool and ocean with Zoe during those first two days, but I wasn’t able to do much more than that. I mostly just lay around and sipped water.

It could be argued that E was right and that we should have stayed home. However, I didn’t want to ruin the trip for everyone just because I wasn’t feeling well. I still had a fantastic vacation and don’t regret going to Kauai in that condition. I did not get anyone else sick, and I tried hard not to complain too much or bring others down.

The hardest part for me was not being able to eat, since I love food. Eating yummy Hawaiian food is typically a meaningful part of our Kauai vacations, but not for me on this trip. I sat through several restaurant meals just sipping water while everyone around me enjoyed their food. Other times, I would slowly eat a banana while my family enjoyed their meal. The not eating part got old for me pretty quickly!

Finally, on day five of my stomach illness, I went to an urgent care in Kauai to get a doctor’s advice. She said I had done all the right things: rest, lots of fluids and “bowel rest” (aka not eating). She suggested I gradually start adding “BRAT” foods as I felt able. She also prescribed several medications to help stop my symptoms and allow me to eat in order to keep up my strength.

After just one day on the meds, I felt able to eat again and to go out, drive around and explore more of the island. I also felt well enough to snorkel with Z in the ocean and even had the strength to go on a gorgeous Heritage Trail hike with my parents.

When I left home at the start of our trip with a bad tummy, I thought for sure it would be a 24-hour bug and that I’d be feeling like myself again in no time. Little did I know that I’d be ill for almost the whole trip! But, I still don’t regret going. It was so nice being fussed over and cared for by my mom – when else do mothers like me get pampered and babied when we get sick?!

I still don’t know how or why I got so ill, but I’m so happy to be back to my normal, full-strength self again. Like I said in Kauai: you never appreciate how good feeling healthy feels until you’ve been sick for almost a week!

As for being under the weather in a beautiful place like Kauai, what can I say? Of course, I’d rather be healthy in paradise but if I had to be sick either way, I guess I’d rather be sick in paradise than at home in bed!

Have you ever proceeded with vacation travel even while ill, or are you more of a “cancel the trip” person? I’d love to hear your sick on vacation tales in the comments below or over on Facebook or Instagram.

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About the author

Proud and loving midlife mama. Lucky and devoted wife. Dog, cat and snake mom. Travel nut. Natural born writer. PR and social media pro by day - tattoo doula by night.
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