Sunday, June 27, 2010

Day in the Life,Round 2

Woke up this morning
counted my toes
slipped on my glasses
lanced my finger
relanced my finger
sighed at the result
bolused a correction
trotted downstairs
devoured two waffles,sunny side brown
checked my email
tripped over the cats
drove to the airport
kissed my husband goodbye
got frisked by a TSA agent
felt the whoosh on the downside of the 3.0-3.5 hour bolus
popped two tabs
squished in an airplane seat
ate half a granola bar
arrived in a hot place
downed a big Mac
drank diet coke #2
rescued my luggage
waited on a shuttle
gave bad advice
arrived to a broken ac
went to a theme park
drank diet coke #3
skyrocketed 200+
ate a salad
drank diet coke #4
walked my legs off
corrected again
ate half a pizza
recounted fingers & toes
bolused madly
smelt the fresh goodness of smashed insulin
conked out
dreaming of a diabetes-less world
until A. I wake up high
or B. I wake up low.
more harm then good?
perhaps,but at least I gave it all I had,& therein lies the victory.

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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Diabetes versus Six

Sometimes,I think that's why it will always be "juvenile"...(to some degree-we'll always be treated like a little kid)

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A Different Type of Hypo

Today,I learned something.I learned that certain things do not mix well in the chemistry lab that is the human body.I learned that labels on products are not there to take up space,& should be read.And I learned that liberal applications of topical lidocaine based ointments(for a rash) will slowely absorb into one's blood stream & hit,like a brick,on a 85+ degree Sunday morning.At which point you will read the back,and freak out,as you've been applying large amounts daily,for the past 3 days.

And I've learned,that because you feel really horrible & shaky (& bg is holding steady) & decide that it might be a good idea to go to the Emergency Room,they tend to take said matter very seriously,despite there being plenty of other sick people there.Near immeadiete EKG,bloodwork,IV line.The technician came back & escorted me to the waiting room..front of the line pass.There must have been something amiss on that EKG because,short of dying,you will always wait several hours,not ten minutes. Heart monitor applied when I got to a room. I learned that there are no blood measurements for lidocaine but enough of it will A.kill you B.make you have a seizure or C.mess up your electrolytes & screw with your EKG which is apparently what it's done to mine,given that I have no cardiac history.I learned that doctors will still throw in a good diabetes lecture while they're lecturing you on the toxicity of lidocaine. I learned that magnesium,given without saline,still burns the entire groin/stomach & gives a buzz.(and not the one from Toy Story)

5 hours later,I'd improved a whopping .2,to .8. They'd maxed out on the amount they could give (outpatient) so they decided to admit me.The new doc came by and asked if I have any cardiac history,my potassium was low too. Finally, I'm wheeled upstairs.It's late at that point so no new orders have been written for more mag,until I get upstairs.I am not having a heart attack,nor do I feel any chest discomfort but the monitor stuff stays on,because low electrolytes mess up the heart rhythm.All I want,is to feel human again,the infusion process cannot go fast enough. Round #2 with the magnesium infusion.(it's mixed with saline that time) Sleep. Get poked by 6 am vampires. Give up on sleep. Eat a tasteless breakfast, wait on the doctor to come by & deliver blood results. Still only 1.1. Eat lunch,swallow more potassium pills,have another round of magnesium, re-wait on the doctor,have more blood drawn-it's now 1.4 & the potassium is 3.8 so it's good for discharge. Eat supper, have paraphenalia removed/etc. discover that you have a tape allergy & you're now a brilliant red from the monitor patches.Won't be treating it with lidocaine,needless to say.Discharged/home/bed.Sleep 12 hours,wake up to a 306 and two units left in the resevour.Change resevour,set. Schedule nephrologist appt. Dip briefly to 200,go right up again to 300-400 where you remain most of the day.(despite boluses,despite everything) Discover that car ac is broken,on one of the hottest days of the year.(and hubby is at work) Discover that driving to the appt anyway is not a good idea as you have a dizzyness attack & turn the appt into a recovery/cold cloth/fluids session. Make it down to the lab,give up more blood. Drive home. Change infusion set,take a shot,collapse into bed-the week can only get better from here, I want to get these levels back on track so I can enjoy myself in Orlando.Had to miss going to pump group & swimming lessons because of all of the above.I am so worn out,both physically and emotionally it's knocked me through the loop.I don't want it to get worse & do anything else,it's done more then enough damage.
But most of all, I've learned that I was lucky,it could have been worse. Dumb luck is my forte.(that,or my guardian angel works overtime)

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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Jackpot at the Endo's

Congratulations are in order.

Or not. Depends on which part of the appointment with my endocrinologist you witnessed.

On the one hand, I have broken the 8.0 barrier. (dropped from 8.4 to 7.9) On the other hand, it would have been better if I'd not had (2) 400's and 1 (500's) in the past week. I was sort of dissapointed, because I have had weeks of utterly stellar bgs otherwise and was hoping to have broken the 7.0 barrier. So no dancing on the exam table for me. Lowering an a1c is hard work.(impossible work)

And a recheck of my thyroid levels have turned out normal. Yay,yay! And it's time to get my eyes rechecked.(ugh,ugh)

And here's where I confess to being a slobby, no-good-at-keeping-complete-record-books PWD. Although I generally put in an effort the week before an appt. Add that to the practice of sometimes bolusing for meals/correcting via syringe, and not putting the carb count in my pump & the result is a very frustrated endo so I got the whole "we can't help you if you don't keep complete records," etc. It then turned to,"it's better but an average of 160 doesn't cut it if you want to have an a1c in the 6's and your average should be in the low 100's." And displeasure at my post-meal blood sugar being 310.

All in all, there were two minutes of feeling great about myself and 18 of mentally wishing I was 2,000 miles away. Exhausting doesn't describe it. It all needed to be said, for the purposes of the future plans,but more and more you just feel like your endo has turned into Dr. Jekyll from Dr.O'Awesome. Do, or do not-there is no try. Icing on the proverbial that I may need to switch from Apidra to Humalog (at some point in the future). What fun that will NOT be.(Humalog sticks around forever)

But coming home to this..

courtesy of Diatribe (signed by the great James Hirsch himself) made the day slightly better. I am a winner.(if not at diabetes, at least at various contests)

Friday, June 11, 2010

A Taste of June 15

(the real question is-will it survive drops/dunks in the sink/etc. as well as the le trusty (old) 3G?) The thing looks really, really fragile. Regardless, I'm very excited to get one! (hello,quadruple memory upgrade!!)

Thursday, June 10, 2010


It's been 11 years since that day. Eleven. (forgive my obsession with sort-of-pointless anniversaries.I don't consider this one to be that,though.)

Eleven years since my mom and I got in a car,in the early predawn hours,for the hour ride to the hospital.We were late,because my mom got a ticket for cutting between the sides of the interstate on the emergency access road. I guess blindness wasn't an emergency to the State Highway patrol.

I was epically high that morning(370) but none of that mattered.All that mattered,was that I couldn't see anything.The world was a 20/400 blur.On the way to the OR,I tripped,banged,and felt my way behind the orderly. And then fell,to the mortification of any modesty I had left. Entire body exposition,as my gown fell off. That's pretty much the experience,in a nutshell.(naked & blind,roomful of opposite sex health care professionals.Sole comfort was not knowing how many people were in there)

I went out.And came back,to a competely white world (no,it wasn't heaven). One eye,bandaged. The other,dysfunctional. Stood up,black dots streaked across the landscape of bad eye.Lay back down again,quickly.

And the next day,felt the joy of restored vision & the gratitude of a 2nd chance. I cried,profusely.(probably everyone does) 2.5 weeks of worry melted away like a cloaked nightmare. I will always have to wear reading glasses(they hadn't perfected to whole near-far lens implants yet) but to me it is a small price to pay. I will do whatever it takes to keep my vision. Diabetes was to blame(months of high blood sugars wracked havoc,pre-diagnosis) ,but modern medicine does win occasionally, & when it does,there's a sense of stickin' it to the D. I'd have a considerably different life,if it weren't for those surgeries. To me,they meant everything.

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Monday, June 07, 2010

Veni, Vidi, Visa

(I came, I saw, I bought)

Diabetes is very expensive.Even if you have really good insurance,even if you can afford the latest & best.

Last year, I had the not-so-enviable experience of throwing my Dexcom transmitter into a Danish trashcan,which eventually made it's way to a Danish landfill. I usually put a layer of Opsite first(and then insert the sensor,snap the transmitter in place,good to go for the next two weeks) and when it's finished,I rip it off & put it all near a new sensor for the next insertion.Fine if you're not on vacation,rushed for time,and feel like crud from respiratory crud.In a fevered moment,I must have ripped it off and threw it in a trashcan(not the suitcase)5 days later(and on the other side of the Atlantic)as I'm systematically searching & triple-checking my suitcase, said transmitter was no where to be found. Dexcom,unfortuantly,does not replace them as a one time was $375 for a new one.It's one of those situations where you can't say no,because you NEED the darn thing.Whip out the VISA and watch the money dissapeir.(and never,ever,ever lose another one)The major mistakes of my diabetic existance usually lead to my actually learning to prevent from doing them in the future,but the list of future mistakes is endless. Diabetes is fun that way.
And so,I have baked insulin & test strips,had to buy a temporary meter(because the one you bring on vacation just has to die), drowned a pump in Betadine, and done many other things to add to the existing cost of diabetes. It just seems that there is no room for being human, in any of it.Insurance companies are so strict,& most limit you to the bare necessities.Beyond that,you can spend any amount of money on D-stuff.

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Wednesday, June 02, 2010

The Top Five 'Betic (& not) June Deals

#1. MEDCO.

MHS10, tenoff,MHS20,10off, gets you $10 (or $20 off) your purchase of $10+. New accounts only. Shipping is only .99, so you can get a boatload of cheap glucose tablets. Or whatsoever else your heart desires. And if Medco allows it, you can use another code for another cheap order. (its very YMMV with these codes)

#2. Nationwide FREE a1c test, courtesy of CVS pharmacy. This is pretty awesome for the uninsured/underinsured folks out there, it raises some level of awareness that something might need changing. And you can do it anytime,at any Minute Clinic CVS pharmacy. As luck would have it, Massachusetts,Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Nevada are the only four non-participating states,and of course, I live in one of those states. Way to go, CVS!

#3 FREE tree(in your honor) planted.(when you vote for your favorite national park)Because generating a small city's worth of medical waste(yearly) should be offset somehow.

#4 Friendly's FREE ICE CREAM,Sat. June 5 (12 pm-5 pm) Just in time to ruin my a1c.(just kidding,it is what it is,and a serving of ice cream will not change that)

#5 FREE admission to any museum, Sat. Sept. 25,2010.(must preregister) It has nothing to do with diabetes,unless you're visiting a urological museum...but it's a good deal!