Friday, October 10, 2014

Sometimes Chanting is the Only Option

So last night the Dex buzzed 4 times at me.

(4 times is bad.  It's the hard alarm set at 55, telling me I'm pretty low).

I stared at it.  It said my blood glucose was 50 and dropping. Not dropping super fast, mind you, but on the way down.

So guess what I did?

Ate candy?  Drank juice?  Tested to verify?

Nope.  I did NOTHING.  I hit the button, and fell back asleep.

That....was not the wisest decision I've ever made.  I don't even know why I did it.  I can only blame middle of the night fatigue plus "low blood sugar brain".

I know you're all dying to know whether I died or not.

SPOILER ALERT:  I survived.

I just woke up later, feeling much much worse.  The dizziness, the sweat, the absolute and total NEED for glucose fueling my every move.  I grab my Dexcom, only to see the word LOW stare back at me.  I was lucid, however, for which I am grateful.

Dug around, found the candy, and popped 3 Starbursts into my mouth.  I did not eat the wrappers. Yes, I have eaten the wrappers in the past.  Sometimes unwrapping is too much coordination for a low blood sugar shaky hand to handle.  (Which is probably why I should buy glucose tabs).  (blech.)

Meter and Dexcom both showed 48.  Never have I been so happy to see a 48 on the Dex, because it meant the LOW word was gone, and I was now above 40.

And as I lay there - the chanting started.

"I've treated already.  I'll feel better soon.  I've treated already - I'll feel better soon.  I'VE TREATED ALREADY- I'LL FEEL BETTER SOON!"

Even though I feel like I'm going to explode, I probably won't.  

I chant this to myself to avoid eating the entire package of Starburst, plus drink all the milk and juice in the house, plus make myself a sandwich and have a bowl of cereal.

There are times when I have lows where the chanting doesn't work - the fear is stronger. and I overtreat, knowing I will have insulin later, and not caring.  All I want is to feel normal again, stat.   There will be more of them, I'm sure.  But sometimes this chanting works.  Last night it did.

And then the chanting stopped, because I actually started to feel better.  It is always a glorious feeling, when the low blood sugar tiger recedes into the background.  When you feel like yourself again, when you take a breath of air after being under too long, if I may mix metaphors terribly.

Dex buzzed 3 times.  3 times means below 70, which means I am coming up, and sure enough, it says 56 and rising.  This is nice, because often times Dex will take a while to register a rise from a bad low, it has some serious lag time there.  But with that assurance, I fell asleep again.

Woke up to a lovely 109.  Didn't even have a hanglowver.

But I have learned not to ignore the Dex again.  Which, you know, is a lesson I didn't need.  I already know this.  I just need to tell my middle of the night self about it.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Results and a New Diagnosis

What?  You DON'T post private medical information on the internet?

Phone call today after the appointment yesterday.  Keep in mind that although I love my doctor, their office does not have an A1C machine (what?!) and I always get my lab results the next day.  Bizarre, but what are you doing to do?

Seriously, the doctor's appointments have become "Hey, good to see you.  Still doing well?" "Fine.  Here's a study I want to join..." "Great!  How are the kids?"  etc.etc.

"So....Your A1C."

Pause, Pause..Anxiety level rising.

"What do you think it was?"

I had downloaded Dexcom data lately, I thought I had a good shot.


"6.2!!"  He almost shouted it.  It was kind of hilarious.  "I mean, that's almost TOO low."

Oh, no, it's OK, I'll take it.  I don't think it's too low at all.  5.2 might be running too low, maybe.  But I'm perfectly fine with a 6.2.  Especially since I haven't had a ton of hypos.

WBC still low.  Whatever that means.

Cholesterol still high.  Like that means anything.  (Well, he thinks it does.  He asked me to compromise and take a statin once or twice a week, maybe?  Ok then, I'll think about it).

Thyroid function good.


This time we did a check for antibodies for Hashimoto's, as my sister has it, and my dad, and seriously, I think I do too.  I've gained a little weight and the fatigue level has ratcheted up a bit.

As it turns out, well yes.  Yes, I do.  I am apparently awesome at diagnosing myself.  (I knew I had diabetes, I knew I had Hashimoto's, this is just going to FEED the hypochondriac in me.  That's going to be awesome for everyone around me.)

And so the auto immune diseases add up.

So that's cool.

Actually, I'm perfectly fine with it, as I was totally and completely expecting it, and seriously, it's on both sides of the family, it was coming.  Also, apparently I love adverbs.

Anyone else miss School House Rock?  Just me?  OK then.

He doesn't want me to do thyroid meds yet, as the function was good.  Dr. Google has differing opinions on whether antibodies require meds or not, but since I pretty much feel fine, except for the fatigue, which isn't that debilitating, especially since I upped the exercise factor, I think I'll wait.  At the next appointment, if I'm 15 pounds heavier and can't get out of bed, there will be a discussion.

And then I hear it in my head "Why wait until you can't function? Get on meds now."  But I don't know what level they'd shoot for if my thyroid shows up fine at the moment. ?  I don't know how this works yet.  Probably the low wbc, cholesterol, and thyroid are all linked.  Because pretty much everything is linked.  Also, did you know Hashimoto's can cause vocal nodules?  Which I get?  Hmmm....Maybe it wasn't all my yelling after all.  Or..maybe it was.  Who knows?  Anyway, I'm fine not being medicated yet, but I know it will come.

But hey, my A1C rocked the house.  And he was pretty pleased with the lab work as a whole.

(In other news, I've sent all my pee to Faustman.  Waiting to hear from them.  Also, I want to get into the ViaCyte study in San Diego.  Like, with my WHOLE SOUL I want to get in.  I've called them twice, have yet to receive a phone call back.  Prayers, good vibes, positive thoughts that I get in would be appreciated. )

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Onward and Upward!

So, remember my emails?  And my Faustman joy?

Well, all that took a slight detour when they couldn't access any HbA1C records before 6/2011.  They emailed me.  Did I switch doctors?  Where are those records?  Where can I find them?

That was when I was in the Protege study, and as they were running A1C records for the study, my endo didn't feel the need to repeat them.  I gave them the info, but was feeling fairly defeated, Charlie Brown, because really, I didn't know what the protocol is for studies giving up proprietary medical info.  Since I wasn't actually a patient at the clinic running the study, they couldn't just access the info from the computer, and I don't know if anyone was willing to dig through 3-5 year old records to find 2 or 3 A1C's.  I had told my endo what the A1Cs were, so surely they were in the chart notes, but I didn't know if chart notes were sufficient.  Especially chart notes that just wrote down what the patient told them.  I could have been a dirty, rotten, stinking, liar for all they knew.

Plus, there's that whole "I was in another drug study" thing I had to contend with, and typically, drug studies don't like patients who have been in other studies, it tends to ruin the 'general population' dealio they've got going.

BUT I HAD THE PLACEBO!  I SWEAR!  (I really did.  I was fairly ticked about it, too.)

(And while I knew this would come up, it's not like I wasn't going to tell them I was in a study, I was worried I had derailed this before it even began).

After that, there was radio silence.

And today, a box shows up.  I look at the return address.

I have made it to the urine portion of the study.  To gauge c-peptide production, I am to pee once a week, into a cup, after drinking a Boost, and send it back to them.  This is a box of shipping materials and Boost drinks. I must be fasting for 8 hours before drinking the Boost, and empty my bladder right before drinking it. Did you know they could test c-peptide in urine? Well, they can.

I've never been so excited to pee, store, and ship urine.  In fact, I do believe this is the ONLY time I've ever been excited to pee, store, and ship urine.

Let's see if I still have one or two beta cells, shall we?

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

So, I've had some cool emails lately.

"Dear Heidi,

Our records show that as of September 2013 your pancreas was still making some insulin. We measured amounts of c-peptide in your blood and the concentration was 12.57 pmol/L."



Back story - In September 2013, I went to Faustman lab and donated blood for the study. I guess I didn't blog about the trip.  Sorry about that.  They seemed more excited to get my husband's blood at the time (they wanted a non relative with no auto immune diseases for the control group.)  But hey, they were great and it was a fun little trip.

And THEN this weekend I got an email saying "We would like to obtain your HbA1C's for the past five years to see if you might be good fit for the first group of Phase II."

Which led to me sending them my permission to do so, and a request for my c-peptide results. Which led to me being a minion.

As you can see, they were acceptable.  Hopefully I still have some.  It has been 9 months, after all, and though the a1c's have been ok, they could be better.

They use an ultrasensitive assay of C-peptide to assess residual beta cell function, with a detection limit of 1.5 pmol/L.  She attached a paper explaining it.  Here it is if you want to read it.

And thus, we wait.

But this is good.  This is very good. Onward and upward and all that.  Yes, this is the lab you all donated to for my 4 year diaversary.  Thanks again!!!  See what's happening because you dropped $3?  SEE??

(link to the phase 2 trial.)

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Adventures in Dentistry

OK, so the dental office my insurance covers?


My copay there?

Awesome.  As in, $5.  I will put up with a lot of terrible to get a teeth cleaning for $5.

Hello, I'm Mr. Lincoln.  I will be your dentist today.

And believe me, I have.  I've had a 10:00 appointment, only to finally get in the chair around 12:30, only to be told we needed to reschedule because my hygienist had gone to lunch.  Pitched a fit, different hygienist squeezed me in, and I insisted I only be put with her from that point on (didn't happen).

I've been told my teeth are "weird."  I've been called in between appointments to see if I wanted that crown we talked about.  Apparently my large filling should be a crown, and it should be a crown yesterday. I've had the hygienist complain that I have wisdom teeth, because, whine,  "they're so hard to floooossss".

(My husband can't stand the place and hasn't been back.  My kids go elsewhere because they should grow up liking the dentist as much as possible.)

But I can have a bad day once every six months, because....CHEAP. I can put up with waiting if it saves me hundreds of dollars.

Last time I went in, it was beyond my ability to "suck it up for the savings."

I had the cleaning, (different hygienist). I had the x-rays.  Then the doctor walked in.  It was a different dentist than I had seen before, but this is one of the practices that just puts you with whomever, continuity of care be damned. (The turnover is also high.  I don't think people like working there any more than patients like going there).  He started spouting off tooth numbers that were bad. I was told I had multiple cavities.  That crown was urgently needed, and the fact that I didn't have it done yet is bordering on negligent.  One of the bad cavities was in my wisdom tooth, and there was really no reason to fill that, because "you don't want to put any money in your wisdom teeth, do you?' and was told I needed those out stat.  He started recommending oral surgeons. By the time he was done, my mouth was in dire straits, and this was going to take a village to fix.

Hint: Do not Google image "bad teeth."  

Embarrassingly, my eyes welled up a little.  Still, I found my voice. "Six months ago, everything was fine. You do not go from fine to major problems in six months."

He looked at me, seemed surprised that I was upset at all, and said "Look, it's your choice as to what to do here.  You can choose to do nothing, but these are the problems I have diagnosed.  These are DIAGNOSABLE problems (he was just the dental Dr. House, I guess).  It's just ridiculous that you have wisdom teeth, there's no reason at all to have them, etc. etc."

He walked out.  While I was still in the chair trying to grasp this, the hygienist handed me a coupon for $50 off your next dental service, and said "Did you want to schedule that surgery now, Heidi?"

Surgery. With Type 1. No. No, I did not.

I walked out to the checkout station, and she printed off no less than 4 "stages" of work I needed done, and which thing I should do first, wisdom teeth, etc. and then she took one look at me, with my fighting back of emotions, and said "Let's just schedule your next cleaning. You can take some time to think about what you want to do."

OK.  Let's do that.  But I can guarantee you I'm not going to keep that appointment.  I paid my $5 and got out of there. I might have cried a little in my car.  Not telling.

That was in September.  I did nothing about my teeth, except worry and ask dental friends what they thought of wisdom teeth. In March a reminder email showed up.  I clicked that I would not be there, they called, and I told them I was never coming back.  Still, I wondered.  Maybe I was screwing myself over.  I do have diabetes.  I do eat candy in the middle of the night and don't brush afterwards.  My sugars do go high, and that's got to be affecting things.  I do drink diet soda by the gallon.  Maybe I desperately needed that crown.  Maybe I had cavities that were getting worse by the minute.  Maybe I now had a new thing to get all "anxiety girl" over.

So I finally called my kid's dentist and scheduled an appointment for me.  I walked in, explained how another dentist had found issues, but I needed someone I could trust, and hoped for the best.  I was worried that this was going to be pricey, and I had just made everything worse by waiting.

No cavities.  Let me repeat that.  NO CAVITIES. That tooth that needed a crown?  Yes, eventually it will need it, but they're not even going to put in on a watch list yet, because it's very stable.  It'll likely be years before it's necessary. My wisdom teeth?  Look great, no there's not a big cavity in one, why would I think that? - and there's plenty of room.  They're just like any other tooth, and I can keep them as long as I want.

Both the dentist and hygienist were like "Your teeth look great.  Just keep doing what you're doing."

And I said "I drink a lot of diet soda.  That must be it."

Then they laughed, out loud, for a long time.  Oh yeah, diet soda is the way to go when it comes to teeth.  Of course. (They don't really believe that, just in case you were wondering).


Did I want to schedule another appointment?

Yes.  Yes I do.  Some things are worth more than $5.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Mantras and More

Day 4.

The prompt is:

Today we are getting back to the positive with our topic Mantras and More. Yesterday we opened up about how diabetes can bring us down. Today let’s share what gets you through a hard day? Or, more specifically, a hard diabetes day? Something positive you tell yourself, or mantras, or what you fall back on to get you through. Maybe we've done that and we can help others do it too?

OK, then.  Here you go.

Just keep swimming.  

Also, this.

You're going to be OK.

Also, this.

Can't tell you often that tree has seen me through.

Just keep swimming.

Having a bad diabetes day?

(Part of me wants to get this and put it up in the bathroom.  I won't, though.)

More links here.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Diabetes Blog Week - Better Late than Never

OK, so I should have been blogging all week about various topics on diabetes.. I haven't been doing that.

But here's the prompt for today - 

May is Mental Health Month so now seems like a great time to explore the emotional side of living with, or caring for someone with, diabetes. What things can make dealing with diabetes an emotional issue for you and / or your loved one, and how do you cope? 

This is a rough prompt,  and I don't think I will go fully down that rabbit hole.  There are a whole LOT of things that make living with diabetes an emotional issue for me, not the least of which is diabetes itself, when high blood sugars make you burst into tears at the grocery store because well....THE GROCERY STORE, and when low blood sugars make you eat everything in sight to keep the terror at bay.

Keeping the terror at bay is hard.  

But here's a conversation I had tonight that sums up PART of what makes it an emotional topic.

Husband: I brought home pizza.  I also got you a salad because I know you're not a big fan of pizza.

Me:  I'm a fan of pizza.  It's diabetes that doesn't like it.  And it's a very demanding roommate.

And there you have it.  I have an uninvited, demanding, expensive roommate.  One that will never leave. One that demands I eat salad over pizza, even when I don't want to.  And should I choose that pizza, there WILL be consequences.  This roommate keeps me up at night.  Constantly.  It calls me all day long. beeping and buzzing and not letting me just be BY MYSELF FOR ONE MINUTE?   It's basically a demanding toddler that will never go away, and it's sucking up my vacation funds in the form of test strips that get everywhere. Seriously.  This roommate is MESSY.  It never cleans up, it never contributes to the bills, and I can't kick it to the curb.  

And really, I'm an introvert.  College is over.  I don't need any roommates.  The only ones I want in my home are my family members.  

The permanence makes it rough.  How do I make peace with something that won't end?  

I have no idea.  If you do, let me know.

More d-blog links here.  Thank you.

Friday, April 18, 2014


Went to the eye doctor a few days ago.

Got reprimanded that it had been "almost 2 years!!!!" since I'd been there.

I think mostly the tech was mad at me because as soon as they called me back, and I walked into the first room of 3, and it was 9:45 in the morning, and I said  - out loud - "It smells like nachos in here."

I probably shouldn't have said that.

Because after I looked around for said nachos, wondering if there was a break room nearby or something, it's highly likely it was her breath.

Whoops.  But seriously, who's eating Mexican food that early?  And you know looking at eyes is close work, right?  You can't pop an Altoid?

So then I got the reprimand of not being there since AUGUST 2012!! And it's now APRIL 2014!!  Clearly, I could have suffered horrible eye diseases and I am so lucky I wasn't struck blind between now and then.

Which, you know, is probably true.

Then lots of tests were run and drops were adminstered, I sat there and listened while the dilation was starting.

She was charting, and I hear her talking to herself as she writes, and she says "OK, DM 2....blah blah this..."

And I interrupted her.

"DM 1."

She was flustered and confused as she looked up.


"You said DM 2.  That stands for Diabetes Mellitus 2.  I am a Type 1.  You need to write DM 1."

"Oh, Ok.  I just am SO USED to writing DM 2."

"I'm sure that's true, as it is more common, but you should ask before you chart something like that."

(And honestly, I've been going there for years, it should already be on the chart if you looked back, nacho lady). (But maybe somebody charted it wrong already and she did look.) (I don't know.)

And frankly, does T1 v T2  matter that much at the eye doctor?  Eye problems can plague all diabetics, so type probably doesn't play into their treatment at this stage.

This stage being:  MY EYES LOOK AWESOME.

So there.  See you in a year.  You know, if I remember.  Which I probably will.  I'm pretty good about that. Usually.

Also, I really should not drive after dilation.  They should really have a recovery room where you sit there and listen to music for a couple of hours before they just let you out on the road like that.

Oh, and I went out for tacos afterwards.  For some reason Mexican food sounded really good.  And it was.

Friday, March 21, 2014

I am his FAVORITE patient. Nobody can tell me otherwise.

Had a doctor's visit.

He still adores me.

He looked at my numbers and said I must eat really healthy.  Which is odd, because the week before my numbers were all over the chart (like 350 for no reason or 45 with double arrows down.  FUN.)

Told him I liked doughnuts. Just these specific ones from the grocery store. Snarf.

He wants me to experiment with a Type 2 drug that makes you pee out your sugar if you go too high.  He says it works for Type 1s too, but insurance won't pay for it.  So I have samples, and will probably take them the week before my period when I go high.

He thinks Type 1s get the shaft when it comes to new meds because there just isn't the same market as for Type 2s.

We agreed on that.

A1c was 6.8. I can live with that.

We fought the battle over statins.

He did acknowledge that at my age taking it sporadically was probably OK, and we can argue some more after I'm 40.

LDL was high, but not terrible. Take that.

I'll be 40 in a year and a half. Gah. Take THAT.

WBC was still low.  Not sure what's going on there, or if that's even a concern.  It may just be how I roll.

And now, since I just had a doctor's visit, and nothing will show up on labs for a while, I have been stuffing Swedish ginger cookies down my gullet like nobody's business.  They are tiny and delicious and I CAN'T. STOP. EATING. THEM.

The buzzing of the CGM can't stop me.  They're just that addicting.

Anyone else feel like once your labs are over, you can party a little?  No? Just me?  Ok, then.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

My Life in Song. Old, strange songs. That's How I Roll.

I like to think I have control over many aspects of my life, especially pertaining to my children.

I am wrong.

I like to think I can control my diabetes.

I am wrong.

I get asked to do crazy things by zombies who don't think they're being unreasonable.  Been to the doctor lately?  Talked to a CDE?  And I love my doctor.  Sometimes they can't see it.  It's not unreasonable -  "I mean, no one's going to eat your eyes". I often feel like Tom in this video.  "I sure appreciate your working with me..." but no compromise is actually going to be offered, nor is it ever intended.  Diabetes doesn't compromise. (Sometimes people don't either.  Even if they think they are.)


"It's going to be the future soon.  I won't always be this way. When the things that make me weak and strange get engineered away".

"And when my heart is breaking, I can close my eyes.  It's already here."

(Note - No relationship angst here.  I'm happily married to a code monkey and do not pine for high school crushes.)

And don't worry, I don't plan on building a robot army.


Friday, January 31, 2014

Of Randomness and Roses

  • 5 Year Diaversary was a couple of days ago.  What with the fainting and what-not, I totally forgot about it.  Celebrated with a bag of mint M&M's (in honor of my newly diagnosed self who thought she'd never eat one) and a large Diet Dr. Pepper.  Got a MAJOR stomach ache.  Apparently I am not used to sitting and chowing a bag of candy, haven't done that for oh, about 5 years. 
  • 5 years is a big deal.  I should have done something more, like last year.  But, meh.  My kids were super confused about the candy, though.  "You're NOT low?  You're just eating candy?  Wait, you're low, right?"  
  • New CGM came today!!! Currently in its 2 hour calibration period.  I am super impatient, what with the 2 weeks without data, and the crappy consequences of such.  I haunted the door until the UPS guy came.  I even opened the door for the Jehovah's Witnesses, who taught me about death.  All I kept thinking is that they weren't UPS.  Dang.
  • Note to self:  Get a new transmitter battery in 6 months.  I do not want to do this again.  Can Siri remind me?   She's pretty useless normally.  Hopefully by then I'll have a new phone anyway, and it'll have an android operating system.  (On a side note, does anyone else think it's bizarre that we spend tons of money on phones that are designed to break every 2 years?  Anyone?  No?  Everybody's OK with it?  OK then.) 

Speaking of Money.....

The annual Spare A Rose Campaign is upon us.  The concept is, that for the cost of Valentine's roses (or a single rose), you can pay for a child's diabetes supplies, thereby saving a life. 

Fundraisers that begin with the phrase "For the price of (blank) you can do (blank)" always make me titchy.  "For the cost of a new pair of shoes or a dinner out"...just simply makes me want to buy a new pair of shoes and then go out to eat afterwards. I have my shoe budget, my dinner budget, and my charitable giving budget, and who are YOU to tell me where to spend my money? 

I may have a problem. But it always does rub me the wrong way.  You?  No?  You are clearly a better person than I am.  I'm glad we're friends.

No matter how it's phrased,  this is something I care about deeply.  When I got diagnosed, I asked the nurse in the hospital what people in Africa do, who don't have food, or insulin, and she just shrugged and said "They die.  Same as if they get AIDS."  Awesome.  They die.  OK then.

Death rate in Haiti for Type 1's is 80%.  EIGHTY PERCENT.  That's just criminal.

So I will go ahead and ask you to donate, but instead of telling you which budget to take it out of,  I will simply say "$5 will pay for a month's worth of supplies for a child. And that's groovy."  

(Apropos of nothing, I love white roses.  LOVE THEM.  I was proposed to with them, they were all over my wedding, and they are forever my favorite flower.  Please put them on my coffin.  But not today, because I'm not dead yet.)

I don't care where you had that $5 earmarked, if it was for roses, (maybe roses cost more where you live)  or for you to stare at lovingly because you love to stare at money (similar to my 10 year old, so no judgment).  Maybe you were saving up for a new phone, because hey, your 18 month old phone is clearly a dinosaur.  Maybe you don't budget every little dollar that comes in, and $5 isn't going to break you.  Maybe I should stop talking.

You can print out a "certificate of awesome" telling your loved one where your rose money went, so that's kind of fun.  Make him/her feel guilty about wanting flowers instead.  That's always good for relationships.  Show them that YOU are the better person.  Chocolate?  No way, baby.  LIFE.

Also, why don't my supplies cost $5 a month?  

To sum up:

Go send money.  Do it in the name of whatever you want.  Roses are a good one, though.
I wish my supplies were cheaper.
I may have issues.  

Monday, January 27, 2014

Party with the D

Today is Monday.  Let's talk about this weekend.

Where to start....where to start....

Let's start with my uncle, who was a fabulous man, and loved to say things like "I feel like Elizabeth Taylor's 7th husband - I know what to do, I just don't know how to make it interesting."  A man who loved people, family, and God, a man who made you feel like the most important person in the room just by talking to you.  He cared about everybody.  A LOT.

He passed away last week, succumbing to Parkinson's and Multiple Myeloma,  and so this weekend my husband and I headed to the yonder freaky regions of Los Angeles to attend his memorial service.  It was rough, but a lot of family was there, and it was good to see everybody.

And diabetes didn't let me forget that it was part of my life, even though, seriously?  This weekend would be the perfect weekend for it to take the back burner, thank you very much.

To catch up, transmitter died.  It has now been 10 days without a CGM.  This has been a party.

(In some good news, the insurance is paying for it, and once they found that out, the distributor emailed me to see if I wanted one.  To SEE if I WANTED ONE, and if so, what color?  To which the answers are yes, and black.)

And this weekend, we headed out Thursday to make the 8 hour drive to Los Angeles.  Thursday morning, without the benefit of knowing when at night I went high, (*fell asleep in the 140s)  I woke up in the 350s.  Like I say, party.  So I corrected and ran some errands, and by the time I got home, I was in the 50s.  It was SO AWESOME.

A CGM would have prevented this, waking me up and all.  I often go high at night, but not every night, so I can't really program my pump accordingly.

But it is what it is.  We took off that afternoon, and without incident, arrived that night at my sister's.  Fell asleep in the 160s, with a correction bolus "on board."

Friday morning, again, I awoke in the 330s, or the 380s, depending on which fingerstick you believe.  Either way, WAY TOO HIGH.  Bolused at 9:30.

So I correct, eat a high protein breakfast, with some potatoes thrown in because they are delicious, and we went to the family graveside service.  In the car, approx 2.5 hours after my bolus, around noon, I check again. 257.  So, this is good, I am dropping.

You think you see where this is going, don't you?  And yet...not quite.

The service was on  a small hill in the cemetery, not far from the car. There were a few chairs set up, and many people were standing in order to allow the older generation to sit.

I stood.  For about 2 minutes.

The dizzies were getting me, and so I sat.  It is now 1:00, and I feel terrible, so I check my sugars.  148.   Huh.. I'm way down from this morning, but not in any kind of danger at all, not like the day before.  The dizzies go away.  I enjoy the service, as much as one can.

Afterwards, I try to go talk to an uncle I haven't seen in a while, but I simply could not make it back to the car.  Standing up was not good.  Walking was not good.  I'm leaning hard on my husband's arm, swaying and wishing the dizziness would go away so I could, you know, stand upright and walk to the car. Seeing would be good, too, but all these dots are in the way. I eat a Starburst, (which my husband had to open for me) even though I know I'm not hypo, just in case. Midway down the hill, (keep in mind this is a small hill) I have to lie down, because this just isn't happening.  I lie there, clammy hands, sweating, SUPER dizzy, and they check my sugars again.  128. At this point my family has formed a small circle around me.

It was kind of embarrassing actually.  We were all there to celebrate Howard's life, and here I am lying on the ground.

 A cousin who is training to be an EMT kept asking if I was OK.  (He did ask me later if I had any insulin tabs, and I told him those don't exist, he was probably thinking of glucose tabs. It's OK, he's still in classes). I have an uncle who is a doctor and he was helping me out.  He said it was probably just that my blood pressure had dropped, and I needed to lie there until it equalized. I keep trying to get up, but no, the nice grass is better.  My speech got slurred, (apparently) and my sisters swear there "was a moment" where my eyes rolled up and I looked out of control of my body.  But a short one, they swear.

It was NOT a party.  

Eventually I made it back to the car and to lunch.  Sugars were 118 pre meal.  All that terrible-ness, and I never got below 100.

Did I faint?  Did I seize?  Was it diabetic shock from dropping too fast? Dehydration from the long car ride and the high sugars?  Was it even diabetes related at all?

Who the hell knows?

You?  Do you know?  Because if you do, that would be great.

Every night since then, I have set my alarm for 2 am to check my sugars.  And yes, every night I have been just over 200, but with a nice little bolus, I wake up just fine.

I can't wait for my new CGM to arrive.  It will hopefully make for fewer embarrassing moments and less flailing.  Less flailing would be good.

Saturday, January 18, 2014


Things have been crazy, diabetes wise, this week, and it's not even my blood sugars that are doing it

It's the robot parts.  All the robot parts have conspired against me.  My pancreas is mad that something else is doing its job, even though it can't be bothered, really.  So it's kicking and screaming.  I'm sure you know someone like that?  Won't work, but bitter if someone else tries to?  I think it's an insecurity issue, and all my pancreas needs is a little therapy.

First of all, late Tuesday night, technically 2:52 Wednesday morning, my Dexcom decided to alert.

Not high. Not low.  No, the transmitter battery is dying.  I need a new battery.

Blatantly stolen from the Dexcom website

 It decides that ALMOST 3 a.m. is the perfect time to tell me this.

So Wednesday a.m. I dig through my email, because I know I've saved one from the distributor that sends me all things pump and Dex related, and ah, yes, there it is.  The one that tells me if I ever see this alert, to RUN FOR MY LIFE, because the DEX WILL KILL ME. call them stat, because I have a week left before this thing dies completely.

So I call them.  They refer me to equipment specialists.  They tell me if nobody contacts me in the next couple of days, to call them back. I sit and wait.  (This company has always been very nice to me, but it does business like it's 1999 or something, which is when I worked in customer service.  You can't check on the status of anything online, you must call them for everything.  I actually think it's probably HIPAA related, and that everything medical related is consistently 10-15 years behind the times.)

And for the next 3 nights, the SAME ALERT  pops up, at exactly the SAME TIME.


It's not annoying at all.  I mean, diabetes doesn't keep me awake enough, I need a new alarm that orders me to call people at 3 a.m.

Friday I call them back.  They say it's "pending benefits" which means they are trying to get my insurance to pay for it. "But don't worry.  You have until Wednesday before you'll need a new one.  We'll get this out to you in time".

 Let me save you some time and just say "they ain't gonna pay" because it is January and my deductible isn't met yet.  But I have a sneaking suspicion this'll do the job, and come February 1st, that deductible is nicely met.  Which means I will have to dish out a pretty penny for this transmitter.  A VERY pretty penny.

From Doodle Du Jour
Have I mentioned the pump part yet?  No?  Well, here it is in a nutshell.  Whenever I go really high, and rage bolusing isn't working, I pull the infusion set and replace it.  And I was recently on a very happy making vacation, (which is a completely different blog post altogether, prepping for and navigating that) and it was on a lovely boat, and there was a lot of food, and a lot of shot in the dark boluses, and well, more than a few infusion sets got pulled when they were perfectly fine.

Traveling light is a thing of the past.

Which leads to..I ran out of infusion sets before my auto refill showed up.  (It was shipped on Wednesday, though, and seriously, should be here!) And I haven't been pumping long enough to hoard stuff.  (It'll happen, though, no worries).  And this last one I had been wearing for a week and today it finally said "ENOUGH!"  and pulled out.  It was getting super itchy anyway.

And today, being Saturday, is the day the transmitter decided its lifespan was over, and the only reading I could get from Dexcom was "out of range".  When the receiver is in my pocket.  For hours.

A week, my donkey.

So there I am, no Dex, no pump really, and so I do the only thing there is TO DO.

I call another Type 1.  Well, technically his mom, who is my friend, and I beg a couple of infusion sets off of her.

She comes through like a champ, and even though I couldn't successfully break into her house to get them, she drove over an hour out of her way to get them to me, because SHE ROCKS.

She gets them to me as I am driving to a soccer game, and I give no thought to what random soccer moms think of me stabbing my stomach with this weird thing, I am GETTING THAT PUMP CONNECTED.

(This post has a lot of caps.  My apologies)

I set the basal at 50% for a couple of hours, because I took a few units of Levemir to cover those hours of no basal, and I didn't want to go low, especially without the added security of the Dex arrows to watch.

I get connected, sit down, take a deep breath, a long drag of Diet Dr. Pepper, and pull out my monitor to test my sugars, with the plan of testing every half hour or so, just to see where I'm headed with the different things going on today.

And behold!  I am out of test strips.  Pull out my purse, and of course! The extras in my purse are for the old mini, not the new Verio I've been using now, in anticipation of switching to the Sync.  I am now officially stuck for the next 3 hours with no way to test my sugars, no dexcom to rely on, and a wonky basal schedule.  Perfect.


P.S.  I was 180 mg/dl when I got home.  Not too shabby for the day I've had, really.

P.P.S.  This is really why we need a biological cure.  Devices are not foolproof.  Also, it's exhausting, being tied to stuff that your life depends on 24/7.  EXHAUSTING.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Picard tells you what....random thoughts.

1.  I recently switched meters, from the OneTouch Mini to the OneTouch Verio IQ  They sent me one with my T Slim, and it has a *light* (brilliant! ha ha) and so at my next doc appt, I asked him to switch strips, seeing as how my prescription was expiring anyway.

The light is great.  However, it seems to vary greatly from fingerstick to fingerstick, and it's far more "off "  with Dex than the other meter. Like this morning, Dex says 76.  Fingerstick says 151.  Hmm. So I do it again, and this time it's 127.  Being off by a factor of more than 20 points is not unusual, and it drives me nuts.  Sometimes it says 240, than 218 the second time.  I pull out my old meter, and it's 189.  I'm supposed to make life or death decisions based on this?

Meter accuracy.  Drives me beyond crazy.

2. Last a1c was 7%.  This is not happy making, but I will not beat myself up over it.  It was just weird because I expected around 6.5%.  And when things are not what I expect, GRRRRRRR.  I know 7% is "fine" and all, but it's the highest I've seen, and my last one was 6.4, and yada yada yada.

3. When I see a 300 now, I don't freak out.  I should freak out, right?  I still treat it, I'm not that crazy. It's kind of scary that I'm more comfortable with terrible numbers.  It's also comforting, because you're going to get bad numbers, and freaking out is exhausting.  Still..  300 is BAD.  I see it more now with the pump mostly due to kinked cannulas.  Or ginger cookies.  WHY can't I avoid ginger cookies, and WHAT is the correct bolus?

It's bizarro, the mental gymnastics this disease causes.

4.  Speaking of Dex, I am seeing a lot of ??? and Sensor Fails, almost like I'm wearing the 7 again.  It's barely over a year old, do you think that has anything to do with it?  I am approved for a new transmitter, (yearly benefit) but it's the new year and I haven't started working on that deductible yet, and...expensive.  But if it's not working as well, I may as well get that deductible met now and get a transmitter that works.

4. Speaking of Dex again. Glucovation.  I want in.  Guys left Dexcom, started their own company to make an over the counter, cheaper, anyone can use it CGM?  That sends data to your phone? With no calibration time?  No fingersticks?  And MORE accurate?  No prescription necessary? I WANT IN.  Do they need somebody in podunk az to test it for them?  Can I work from here for them?  WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP  MAKE THIS HAPPEN SOONER?

Man, I wish I had tons of money to invest.  This is going to be big. I can feel it in my pancreas.

5.  And finally, I saw this one when I was making the other memes, and I love it, so I will end with it. (Not diabetes related).