Traveling to California

It’s almost been two months since I traveled by myself to Southern California! I had an amazing time, but I can wholeheartedly say that it was a miracle I was able to fly.

Up until the night before traveling I was still experiencing a lot of pain (refer to my last blog post here) and felt very discouraged. I had planned this trip in mid-July, about two weeks before the consistent FOP flareups and other medical obstacles. Needless to say I was already looking forward to exploring San Diego with some of my favorite people to be around (they also happen to be related to me). I was terrified to think about the possibility of FOP preventing me from going, but it was out of my control.

Thankfully, I had manageable pain (not excruciating; able to be ignored for the time being) the morning of October 6th and was able to make it to the airport! However, I knew that traveling this time would probably feel a little different due to the circumstances.

Prior to my trip I decided it was best to pack a box of instant cold packs in my carry-on to use if I happened to experience tailbone pain on the flight. I also requested a letter from my primary care physician just in case I ran into any difficulties. It was hard for me to accept this new medical necessity even though it might not really seem like a huge change. To me, it means that my disease is progressing.

instantcoldpackI ended up using a cold pack towards the end of the second flight. It surprisingly became a sort of ice breaker to chat briefly with the very kind man sitting next to me. He overheard me explaining the situation to a flight attendant before takeoff, so it wasn’t a huge shock when I suddenly told him I needed a cold pack. He reached for one from my tote bag on the floor and then pressed the overhead call button (we were afraid to attract awkward attention if we popped it ourselves). I was in quite a bit of pain at this point, trying to focus on my breathing to take my mind off the discomfort. The flight attendant eventually arrived to assist us in popping it at the front end of the plane and then returned a few minutes later. I was relieved to finally be able to sit comfortably for the remainder of the flight.

Approximately one hour and many prayers later I exited the plane and was wheeled (via a more modernized airport wheelchair) to meet a couple of my family members at the baggage claim! I was so happy, thankful, and excited.

The day after my arrival we headed right to the San Diego Zoo for part of the day! There’s something about being at this particular zoo that makes me incredibly happy. I think it’s a combination of being with family, seeing the polar bears and big cats, and just having the environment be so familiar. Also, it really helps that there are electric scooters available for rental (even one with the handle bars tilted slightly towards the driver which accommodated my limited mobility) at both the Zoo and the SDZ’s Safari Park since I’m unable to walk long distances. Pretty much everything is accessible in the scooter which makes it even more enjoyable while also conserving my limited energy.

The following days we visited the Safari Park, the Zoo again, and some state parks and beaches. We made sure to plan two break days where we stayed inside so I was able to rest. Whenever I travel I do my best to not overexert myself (even just getting in and out of the car a few times can be strenuous for me) but it’s frustrating when there’s so much I’d like to do within a time constraint. Prioritizing is key so that I’m able to experience the top things on my list and maybe leave the rest for a future trip.

View from Cabrillo National Monument

Although I had wished that California would somehow magically heal me and I wouldn’t have pain, this was not the case at all. I had some level of pain every day of my trip. The simplest actions of getting ready for the day, sitting down to eat a meal, and especially showering forced me to need to lay in bed with an ice pack for at least 30 minutes to allow my body to fully relax. I call these inconvenient moments “pain attacks” because it feels like a rush of pain comes over me. The only way I can think of to describe this sensation is when you feel a sudden chill and your body shudders. Imagine the chill as pain that lingers and is only relieved by ice and rest.

It was definitely challenging for me to make this trip with the pain I’ve been having but I just couldn’t imagine not going. I really needed a break from what it was doing to my spirit. The incredible memories made, countless photos taken, and overall experience of San Diego was worth having to fight through the physical pain.

I believe that a piece of my soul was healed in California. I found so much strength and courage in each day, enough to remain optimistic about my life and my future. It was just what I needed.

San Diego Zoo Skyfari ride

Facebook | Twitter

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

8 Comments on "Traveling to California"

Notify of
Sort by:   newest | oldest
Papa John

I’m so glad you were able to make the trip, Jasmin. I had an AWESOME time with you!

Jasmin Floyd

Me too!! I love you! ❤️

Deb Sherman

Jasmin, you are such an inspiration. So glad you had a good time on your trip.

Jasmin Floyd

Thank you! :)

steven williamson

Hello Jasmin, what a joy to see this in my news feed and to come read about your trip. I am so happy the people on the plane were accommodating and there was no big scene. You are living proof that people can deal with very difficult things and still live life! I wonder if any of us could deal with the amount of daily pain you endure?

I hope you are able to keep doing what you like and telling your story. People need to know about you and FOP. What a wonderful role model you are.

Jasmin Floyd

Thank you!! I really appreciate your words and that you took the time to read my post. Also, I believe that everyone has a lot more inner strength and courage inside of them than they’re aware of. :)

Site Footer

Sliding Sidebar


  • My first blog post of the year is dedicated tohellip
    3 days ago by p0sitivity My first blog post of the year is dedicated to everyone who has supported me throughout my life with FOP. ❤️❤️ (link in bio)
  • After seven years of friendship we finally had the opportunityhellip
    7 days ago by p0sitivity After seven years of friendship, we finally had the opportunity to experience California together last month! It was such an honor to be able to share my FOP family with my bff ❤️
  • It is the places where your pain hides that needhellip
    2 weeks ago by p0sitivity “It is the places where your pain hides that need your love the most.” ✨ - @cleowade 
  • Already planning road trips together months in advance  missedhellip
    2 weeks ago by p0sitivity Already planning road trips together months in advance ‍♂️ missed my best friend ❤️
  • Spending this blizzardy day looking through pics from my triphellip
    3 weeks ago by p0sitivity Spending this blizzardy day looking through pics from my trip to CA last month - already excited for the next adventures ❤️  #twomonths  : @carolraleigh 
  • Too cute to move
    3 weeks ago by p0sitivity Too cute to move ‍♀️
  • Im extremely grateful to be surrounded by so many incrediblehellip
    3 weeks ago by p0sitivity I’m extremely grateful to be surrounded by so many incredible friends, family, and supporters. You’ve all given me hope, encouragement, strength, and courage to make it through each day. After a really difficult year with FOP, I’m so ready for new adventures and even more amazing memories. ❤❤❤  #2017 
  • Spending time back home in Wisconsin always reminds me ofhellip
    4 weeks ago by p0sitivity Spending time back home in Wisconsin always reminds me of my childhood self ❤️  #tbt 
  • When its 0F but feels like 22F anything is consideredhellip
    4 weeks ago by p0sitivity When it’s 0°F but “feels like” -22°F, anything is considered warmer ‍♀️☃️
  • Merry Christmas from my Midwest fam
    4 weeks ago by p0sitivity Merry Christmas from my Midwest fam ❤️