All the camping gear

5 reasons being in hospital is like camping

The bank holiday weekend was meant to be our first trip of the season. We’d done our prep (we’re getting good at that!) The trailer tent was on the drive, the pods checked, the boxes inspected and a bag of necessities sat in the kitchen being added to throughout the week. I even managed to source some hand warmers (we use them like hot water bottles, they last longer) even though Go Outdoors and every other walking shop seemed to have sold out.

We’d opted to arrive on Saturday morning instead of rush to the coast with the masses after the school run, so bags had been packed, clothes chosen for the morning and we’d even packed the car boot.

Then it happened. The curved ball we really weren’t expecting. Mimi ended up in A&E. It’s a long story that I won’t bore you with the details of, but she’s had an on-going issue about which we’d seen the GP on the Thursday and we’d been told as soon as it happened again she needed to be seen at A&E.

Luckily there was no major problem and we were home by 11pm. Mimi said she wasn’t happy going camping as the doctor had said she wanted her back if it happened again for more than 20 minutes – and given the weather forecast was shocking I think Husband thought this was the perfect get out of jail free card.

Unluckily for us we ended up back in A&E with the same problem on Saturday evening and Mimi was admitted. We didn’t get home until 6.30pm on Sunday and went back again on the Monday to see another consultant. Safe to say we don’t really want a repeat of that bank holiday.

Anyway, back to the title of the post – 5 reasons being in hospital is like camping:

  1. You’re only separated from people you don’t know by a thin bit of material. Which is fine, unless one of the other parents is snoring
  2. You have to get dressed and walk to the shared toilet. OK, so I didn’t really take any clothes off to sleep on the camp bed, rather I fell into it at 1.15am in what I was wearing and didn’t really care. What exactly is hospital chic anyway? In the hospital’s defence, it’s fairly new and there were only 5 beds in each side room, sharing a bathroom between us. That’s a better ratio than most campsites
  3. You don’t care what you look like. When you’ve spent too many hours to count at the bedside of a sick child, whether you’re still wearing last night’s mascara (even if it’s on your cheeks) really isn’t a factor
  4. Time will fly – but only if you’re prepared. Being in hospital is a bit like being trapped in a tent in the rain – you have to make your own entertainment. Luckily Husband arrived on Sunday morning to give me an hour to go home and get showered so I grabbed a few things – Uno being the stand-out favourite in the end (although her iPod came a close second)
  5. There’s nothing as nice as a hot shower in your own bathroom and the first night back in your own bed. We were really well taken care of at the hospital by caring (and over-stretched) staff. Even the camp-bed-in-a-wardrobe was comfy (although that could have been the extreme tiredness kicking in). But there is genuinely nothing as nice as coming home to your own space

So apologies to those of you expecting a review of our first camping weekend of the year. Spending the weekend in hospital wasn’t really in the plan, but we’re grateful for the help we received from the NHS and that it appears to be nothing sinister causing the issue.

I’m about to book a week in Wales for the summer holidays. Cross your fingers that goes without a hitch (and without an earthquake, like last time!)


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