Saturday, December 29, 2007

It's Elementary, of Course

Ongoing series on YouTube, too cute!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Left Coast Christmas

The proof is in the wrapper:

For an East Coaster, eating at a Carl's JR is a surreal experience.(It's HARDEES, people!!!) There's some weird thing tacked onto it now(Green Burrito), because anything thats not really Mexican food is not really popular(out west). But it was cool, regardless of that nagging little feeling that the name was all wrong and it should be Hardees, nationwide.

Had a good trip out west, flew into LAX Saturday night-Sunday morning. Stayed a few days in the SF Valley driving around,finishing up shopping,etc.Went to husbands parents house, stayed till the 26th.

Christmas Day-(morning)celebrations at their house. In the afternoon, went to extended familial Christmas celebrations.
Differences between my family and the rest of civilization:

We don't give socks,shirts,pants, or any other articles of clothing. And we don't open presents one at a time(we'd be all day doing it, due to the largeness of said family). In my new family..the exact opposite is the case. Most of the articles, clothing. I like new clothes but I'm not accustomed to it coming as a gift. And there is always the element of not liking something you've received.Something to get used to.

I was the only person(except for babies/kids) who wasn't drinking alcoholic beverages, eating extremely sugary carbo-laden goodies all day. I ate some,but exercised restraints. And the alcohol, I left alone enterily.(besides being a lightweight, my bgs were doing enough exotic things that day)
I felt, different. All over again. Normal people drink alcohol(several times a week, or more), drink juice for breakfast(I never drink juice, unless I'm having a low)
eat sweets with wild abandon, go out for a walk without computing the am-I-too-high-or-low-for-this? factor and do a ton of other things. You go to someone else's house,(on the other side of the country)and they are extremely wonderful people who would bend over backwards to make you feel welcome but there is no diet coke, nothing remotely healthful,and everyone else is partaking generously of holiday cheer and you can't help but to feel different. Just like that 17 year old, fresh out of the hospital + going into a radically different world. Will it ever change-these occasional flashes of being the alien from another planet?
I'm better at being accommodating + understanding of normal people's habits, but after 9 years the feelings of being different still reemerge and leave me wishing I wasn't different, wasn't the "diabetic," And explaining to another family about the carbs/sweets thing- generally impossible, in the name of politeness you eat SF stuff
and don't eat as much of the good stuff as you'd like.

Thank goodness Christmas is just once a year. Now we'll go down to my families Christmas celebrations, where I repeat the exact same scenario(but with the aid of
Diet Coke, I will prevail)Thank you, Coca Cola. Just once, I'd like to have a Christmas party D-style, fresh fruits/veggies/meats/carbo counts on everything/and no alcohol.(yeah,I know D's can drink alcohol but its just so difficult to figure out)
And no Food Nazis admitted.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Pirate Loot

I love Kmart. Do not particurally enjoy the hours spent in explaining to cashiers,CSR's,and managers how to transact their own promotions, but lets
face it,Harvard graduates do not run this company.(or work in the checkout lanes)If
they did, they wouldn't have these promotions in the first place.Cashed out
big on this promo...$90 investment netted me a cool(well,you can count)and
I hope to go back for more. Hope the stores out in CA are lenient with this promo. Can finally get a new digital camera-my old one hit the dust post-Hawaii(+ I lost the pictures that were on it.(((because I hadn't downloaded them yet)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Cops:Edition 201

The steady click,click, gnawing (precisely like a mouse,and believe me,I know mice) emitting from my car's hood wasn't diminishing. Quite the contrary, it was growing to epic proportions as my car creaked-groaned its way up the hill, onto the interstate.

My temperature gauge climbed as well-well into the "hot" zone. I eased off on the gas, trying to give it a break, but no go, in a couple of seconds, it would exceed the max reading. Panic- slow down, get off on shoulder. Put emergency blinkers on.

And then I see the lights. Blue, flashing, lovely lights. Cops!

Try not to hyperventilate, check blood sugar. I cannot be low, I cannot be low-visions of being hypoglycemic in a jail cell dance through my mind.
135. Not low.

"Maam, is something the matter?" the concerned cop asks.

"My car is overheating."

"Do you need me to call anyone?"
"I'm going to try to call my parents."

He nods, circles the car.

"Are you a student?"


"I'm asking because nothing on your car is legal. You need to pull up to the guardrail,this isn't a good spot to be parked."

Pull up. Open glove compartment, flash state stickers in cops face.
"See, I'm legal. Just haven't put them on yet."

"Ok. Where do your folks live?"

"20 minutes down the road."

Can't reach my dad on his cellphone, so agree to have vehicle towed. 5 minutes later, my dad calls back. Towtruck shows up.

"You should be good now."

Cops are generally wonderful people..servants of the public and all that but man they make me so nervous. I stutter, drop things, and act like an idiot(even when I'm NOT low)

Towed to shop, 2 hours (and many $$'s) later- thermostat replaced, gasket replaced. Good as new. Annoying thing is, I'd just had my car serviced 3 days previously and they didn't say a word(maybe it isn't something you can tell is going to happen).
I'm glad this didn't turn into the D edition of "Cops" (it did once, same breakdown spot,cop told the towtruck to take me to the Subway + get food into me before anything else). Ahh, the situations one can find one self in.

Sunday, December 16, 2007


The morning frost lies thick on the windshield, as I jam my key into the ignition, hoping it doesn't take forever to defrost. My wonderful husband has already brushed the snow off, and I have precisely 45 minutes to do that,drive to where I'm supposed to go,find parking,hustle inside,and do it.

Time for the big guns, speed up the process.

Slosh about a cup on the windshield, hoping it works. I've read somewhere Coke is good for this, and I figure Diet Coke should be too. It does ok, and I'm off.

Finish errand, its 11:14. Discover I've not packed glasses and bg meter. Frantic dash home, pickup. Get gas and chips(lunch). Windshield is now encrusted in thick white slime. Wait till I get past the 95-66 triangle before I pull over, (not very smart, because most of the time I was driving with the sun in my eyes + a messy windshield)rub snow on it, and wipe it off with Kleenex. Redneck guy laughs at me."Think its clean enough now?" Drive like mad to get to hospital by 3 pm.

Register, its 2:55 pm.Feel pretty good about getting there on time. Settle in with ipod. Chief Resident breezes by, recognizes me(pretty good for a 1-shot deal nearly two months ago) + apologizes for the delay. Sometimes I think these people either have a photographic memory-or I am so ugly no one could possibly forget what I look like. 4 pm, I go over to the front desk and ask where I am in the lineup. Discover it'll be another half hour because my appointment was actually at 2 pm, not 3. This does not delight me,I fume for the next 15 minutes. Eventually, someone calls my new name(which I still haven't gotten used to) and we go back.

There are some doctors that stand out, and this guy is definatly one of them. But not in a bad way, he doesn't say two words about the diabetes.I've had eye doctors tell me I'm practically a canidate for instant death(these aren't endos, mind you, just opthomologists) unless I get a handle on my a1cs. This guy loves to talk,and loves to talk to his patients about THEIR lives, not just x-y-z what are your concerns today. He asks if I've memorized the chart yet, which I haven't(but he has).
The next 30 minutes fly by, and there is no time to do one of the tests(visual fields). So he tells me to help myself to the stash of Oreos in the bottom lefthand drawer while he goes + checks on what to do about that one test.(automatically elevating his own status to world's funniest AND nicest resident) His own private stash, no less. He comes back, the list of VF testees for the following day was about
a foot high(no kidding)+ if I stuck around, I'd likely be waiting on nothing. So, I will have to schedule it later.(another 3.5 hr drive, one way) The VF test is important because it was abnormal back in October.Chief Resident initially said I had optic neuritis,but the MRI was normal. My eye doesn't hurt anymore so they'll just wait on this repeat test to see if its worse or better.If its stable or improved thats good, and if its getting worse thats bad + time for steroid therapy.

Head down to cafeteria,get sandwich to go. Jump into car, drive to B&BWorks where I get 9 Wallflower packs/2 soaps for $39(valued at $114.50). Hit up CVS,eat sandwich, drive back to hometown, watch "Enchanted" at movie theater(excellent movie,as anything with Patrick Dempsey just has to be) + stay overnight at parents.Next day, run a few errands, schedule VF test + go back up north(arriving on the Outer Loop just in time for the Fri.after work traffic) Spend a couple of extra hours moving 2 mph.This was 1.5 weeks ago.

Tomarrow,going to head back down there for the visual fields test. I also have to swing by the landladys(deposit has failed to appear), go to the Social Security office to officially change my name,return a slew of things to various stores,redeem several gift certificates that expire tomarrow,do some more Christmas shopping,+ generally tear my hair out trying to get everything done.Should be fun.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Reflections..on the O.C.Challenge

Back in January, a group of us D's(and type 3's) decided to go where no D has ever gone before, challenging ourselves in new, cruel,and unusual ways.

Many of us..didn't make our goals. I know I didn't, I think I stopped seriously thinking about it shortly after getting engaged in May. Too many other things to stress out about.

To everyone who made(or will make) it, my hearty kudos. To everyone who tried + didn't, you're in good company. (the best, actually) In 17 days, you'll have a brand-spanking new chance to resolve better things.

At least my a1c went down(1.0 points)+ while my weight went up 5 pounds,I'm not quite on the verge of morbid obesity. Since I'm not working(currently),its easy to pack on those pounds even if one only ate one meal a day.(which I don't)Time to get me to a gym(actually,would make a nice Christmas gift,but if not,should invest in that for both me & hubby)after I find a half-way decent one up here. I don't feel like I failed, my a1c is a long way from my "dream" a1c, but realistically speaking I have only ever been close to that once.(6 years ago,after starting on the pump) Yes, it still sucks, but I'm just the type to want results NOW.(versus 3 months from now) I'm thankful for another year of avoiding horrible complications(dumb luck),+ I'm resolved to keep getting on/falling off the bandwagon for the rest of my life.(hopefully doing more getting on, then falling off)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Aloha from Oahu

Monday,Nov.12, 8:30 AM.

I don't want to get up, but its obvious that I'm having the first reaction of my married life. Mild-but present.

71 mg/dl.

Quick glucose shot,
3 tabs. 20 minutes, 134,during which time I think about glucagon +shrieking fire engines and I know,husband isn't ready for that level of in-your-face diabetes reality. I'm not either, but no one EVER is. (jelly limbs, mushy brain,flailing limbs a la carte)

Our Lanai(porch,with ocean view):

Off to Micky D's. On the corner, there's a guy passing out restaurant bucks + telling everyone how much better they are then McD's.Plus, a buck cheaper. Well, maybe.(that remains to be seen)

In Hawaii,fresh pineapple trays come with every extra value meal(easily the most nutriotious thing on the menu) and you can get coconut mini-pies all day.(instead of apple pies,here on the US mainland) An interesting cultural touch.

4 units of insulin-gonna be soakin' the beach, and that may drop me like a stone.Would rather underbolus...back to hotel,hang on beach, enjoying sun + gentle waves for the next few hours.Waikiki Beach is pretty, but way too rocky.(leastwise,our part was!) Feet got pretty sore.

277 (1 unit)

Well, all things considered, not bad(for 4 hours off the pump).Sometimes you just don't know what direction you're going to go.
5 hours later, my back erupts in a fiery red swirly pattern(aheee,forgot the sunscreen on certain parts). Welcome to Paradise. Then, my sensor goes completely kaput(not enhanced by the sand irritation)+ I yank it, its just too hard to keep it from being irritated.Pump set does I change it. It is very windy, and sand goes everywhere.(head to toes) Hence the exotic sunburn.Good thing I packed the Aloe Vera gel.Husband got burned too-never underestimate the power of the Pacific Sun.(even in November)

Ocean View:

Later, we walk around Honolulu, go to the (humongous,largest in Hawaii) mall,3 floors-160+ shops. There are no Bath & Body works stores there,which makes the Hawaiians desperate to buy that stuff on Ebay.(trust me,I know)A mall without B&BW feels sort of incomplete to me-because I always stop in there,when I go to a mall.They had most everything else,and a ton of stores that only millionaires would frequent.Ate a late supper there, walked back to hotel.
Pearl Harbor was next on our agenda.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Sunday, December 09, 2007

My Wild Spending Spree

Most intelligent action of day:

Yanking out my 6 hour old sensor.($60, down the drain) I was so mad at myself, especially since the last sensor lasted 13 days.

Second most intelligent action of the day:

Yanking out my 4 hour old infusion set.($12, down the drain)

I am sooooo clumsy. Time to lather up in superglue. Leg sites tend to be a more of a problem then abdominal sites, in this regard...but I never thought that they wouldn't even last a day.(they were in differant legs)I don't think I trust myself with another sensor tonight.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Officially Here

(Last weekend, we just got the rain..anyway,I love the first snowfall of winter, it's so pretty-assuming you don't have to drive through it in rush hour traffic.)

Monday, December 03, 2007

Your Virtual Endo Consult

Press "1" if you're experiencing a health question or concern.

Press "2" if you'd like to speak with a nurse(sometime in the next month.)

Press "3" if you'd like to schedule an appointment.

1. Hello, this is your virtual endo speaking, how can I help you today?

-My blood sugars are whacky.(A)

-I have another D concern.(B)

-I'd like to know the results of my latest & greatest
a1c test(C)

-I'm bored, and I just wanted to know if you would
tell me again if avoidance of that box of KK donuts
will absolutely add another 5 minutes to my life or
if I just go ahead and live it up.(D)

-How much is this consult going to cost me??(E)

2. You have reached the message box of EMT-B Heidi.Please leave your name,email,and credit card number + we'll get back to you asap.Thank you.Sorry if you expected to reach a real doctor,that ain't happening. But if it makes you feel better,someday I will be a nurse,if you plan on sticking around that long.

A. Press (!) if you're over 600 mg/dl
Press :-((((( if you're under 40 mg/dl
Press :) if you're perfect
B. Choose your concern:
A1. Complications
B1.Insurance Woes
C1.My Neighbors Cat
D1.Everything else.

C. ER, yes. Ok, now enter your Medic Alert number...

D.Dude, KK is ALWAYS worth it.That's not the ADA line,but its what you wanted to hear,right? So go ahead and bolus well,don't let D dictate your life.Just remember,all things in moderation.

E. It all depends.So far,$10 per word,or a measily $2000+. Keep reading.

(!) So you're high.Wayyy too high,as you well know.How long have you been this way?
!1 under 2 hours
!2 2:4 hours
!3 4 + hours

!1Check ketones..troubleshoot pump.Take injection immeadiently.Recheck ketones+ bg, in a couple hours.
Drink tons of fluids.

What are you now?
J1moderate ketones,250 mg/dl
J2trace ketones, 200 mg/dl
J3moderate ketones,300 mg/dl

J1 You're not out of the woods yet.Keep drinking fluids,sugared as well as plain,to replenish calories.Take additional boluses,as needed.

J2 You're fine. I don't care if your stomach is throbbing fit to beat the band,ketones are nasty little buggers + thats to be expected.You're out immenant danger. Plus,you probably just have a little stomach virus.(its always a stomach virus!)Nothing for us to waste our valuable time over.

J3 Take more insulin.NOW. Go back to !1

!2 Repeat J1,call if bg not coming down.
!3 Go to the ER(if ketones not coming down).That's assuming you're still conscious.

A1-B1. Worried about complications,yes,we feel your pain.America is eating itself to death,T2 and T1 is on the rise,and many people can't even afford basic meds.
Keep your chin up,and do the best you can, that's all we can say.

C1 So,your neighbors cat does its business all over your front bushes?It very likely may have diabetes.See if you can get a dipstick reading off it..and if its positive,you have your answer right there.

2C- 00000000000001
Your latest a1c was 7.6 Keep it up,you'll get there.

D1 I wasn't aware there were any,thought I'd covered it pretty well. Press "3" to schedule an appointment,we should obviously talk about this.

#3 Ok, you wish to make an appointment. How soon?
O.Sometime in the next week
W.SOmetime in the next month

N.You're in luck!we have an appointment for you in 10 minutes.Would you like to accept this appointment?
Y or N
Yes-I can make it
No-That isn't enough time to get out of the house,much less to your office.

O. Sorry,nothing available.Switching to W...

W. Thank you, your appointment is scheduled for Dec.24 at 4:45 PM.Have a nice day,and we look forward to serving you!

A:-(((( Eat, eat,and eat.Call us back when you're able to hold a rational conversation(assuming hypos don't resolve) You should really reduce your basals by 0.2 h/hr and your bolus ratios to 1/20. And no, you're not having a second honeymoon.Nor are you turning into another Halle Berry.You're a type 1,and there's obviously a reason for this.

A:) Perfect, huh?Enjoy it while it lasts,because it won't. Please press "2" if you wish to share with the medical community your secrets for a persistantly euroglycemic state.We're all dying to know.

See,there's nothing to be an endo..very predictable.I know what they're going to say before they say it.I know what they should say&don't and vice versa.I hate diabetes,and like Chrissie I abhor ketones.Even when you're down(bg wise)you're not really "down."(ketones)But its ceased to be a concern,since your bg is now fine..