One Year Ago

I started this blog one year ago today. The reason I decided to begin blogging is because I felt I had a lot to say, even if it was to no one. It would be a great place for me to vent /share my experiences/try to be funny… and practice my writing skills. Plus, I’m no good at keeping a journal and this kind of acts like a surrogate one. (Hopefully it doesn’t turn into a Gone Girl journal)  And I also really wanted to become more involved in the Diabetes Online Community (DOC) and thought blogging would be a great way to join in more.

When I first started I had these grand ideas that I would be like Kerri or Kim and would post every other day or at least three times a week. I would write multiple blogs in one day, save them, and then post them when I felt they were relevant. Well sheee-at. That didn’t happen… Life did. Summer came around and instead of staying in, I’m out in the yard mowing or gardening. I’m at a bonfire with my friends drinking beer. I’m in dozens of weddings and out of town. But all that aside, even if I thought I would have written more, realistically, I think I’ve done pretty well.

I also knew starting out I would have little to zero followers. Now I had a great group that reads me on a regular basis and leaves comments that I adore! (Every time I’m notified I have one I get giddy) So far I’ve done 73 posts, received 60 comments and I’ve had visitors from 32 different countries including Singapore and Great Britain, two places I use to live. And I NEVER thought I would be read in countries such as Pakistan Israel, or Nigeria. That’s crazy!

I’ve even had the great honor of meeting a few bloggers heavily involved in the DOC such as Mike H from The Diabetic’s Corner Booth and Cherise S. who does EVERYTHING including the Diabetes Community Advocacy Foundation (DCAF).  And through my blog I’ve become more involved, and let’s be honest, finally understand the impact Twitter has. (What’s a hashtag?) I now have more people following me on Twitter than I follow. I didn’t think that was possible!

As I forge into my second year of blogging I have a few goals I would like to accomplish:

  1. Double the amount of posts I write. I’m going for around 150.
  2. Take part of the Blog Carnival DSMA puts on or other blog challenges.
  3. Get my name out more into the DOC. I know that sounds vain but I crave approval and validation. (Don’t worry. My therapist knows all about that.)

I also like how we can turn anything into an anniversary. Blogaversary, diaversary. Let’s keep ‘em coming!

Fun Fact: Kelley over at Below Seven is having her blogaversary today as well! She turned two and is way more read than I am but hey, it’s a starting point for me and maybe next year, I’ll be as successful as her. Congrats, Kelley!

On that note, time to start writing!

Bruises

When I was on shots in the good ole days, wow I sound old, I use to get bruises.  Not all the time though.  I would go months without any and then all of sudden I would look down and see this massive purple bruise the size of a half dollar on my stomach.  It was not pretty.  Then for some reason my body would go into overdrive and think, “Hey, it must be time to make Jillian look like a domestic abuse victim!” because every shot after that for the next few days would leave a mark.  I would have 10 freakishly large purple and green bruises covering my stomach and legs.  It looked like I was beaten by an onslaught of baseballs.

The reason I bring this up is that I’ve had to go back to shots for a few weeks and the bruises have returned.  Not nearly as severe as years past but it’s been a long time since I’ve had multiple purple patches on my stomach.  Sure an infusion site has hit a gusher here and there but I could probably count on one hand how many times it has actually left a bruise over the past 8 years of pumping.

I’ve always wondered what makes me bruise like that.  A tiny needle hitting a capillary, sure, that happens.  But for three shots in a row to do that?  Seems like pretty high odds to me.

I’d share a picture of my stomach but let’s be honest; no one needs to see that.  And as much as I love seeing bruises and scars, not everyone feels the same way as I do.

(And if you don’t want to leave any bruises do what Bing Crosby suggests here on Family Guy.)

Scary Thought

I am a dreamer.  Like the kind you have when you are sleeping, not a person whose dreams and plans are not practical or based in reality.  (Well sometimes I’m that kind too but right now I am talking about the Sandman kind.)

When I dream, they are extremely vivid.  I have many that are influenced by what’s going on in my life and these dreams seem very real to me.  What’s scary though is last night I had a dream where I was having coffee with a friend and needed to take insulin.  I dialed in my bolus and went on my merry way.  Then I suddenly woke up and realized my hand was on my pump.  I sat straight up and thought, “oh my god, what if I ‘slept pumped’ (like sleep walking).” I went into my history to see when the last time I bloused was.  Thankfully it was 9pm the night before and not at 4am.  But could you imagine!?  What if I had?  What if I hadn’t woken up and I had a severe low after blousing 3.5 units in my sleep?

I would say these are the things that keep me up at night but that’s a lie.  These are the things that haunt my dreams apparently.

Can’t Hate the Wait

I go to my endo about every three to four months depending on his availability and my schedule.  He’s a busy man and I know I am lucky to have him as my doctor.  But I HATE how long it takes me to get through my appointment.  Here’s the rundown:

  1. My meter, pump, and CGM are downloaded and I am weighed and my blood pressure is taken. That’s quick. (10 minutes)
  2. I go into another “lab” to get my finger poked and my A1C test is done.  It sucks my insurance doesn’t cover this test but I love how I get the results within 10 minutes. (5 minutes)
  3. I am escorted into a room and wait for usually a Certified Diabetes Educator.  (10 minutes)
  4. We go over any changes, troubles I may be having, suggestions, questions, thoughts, prescription refills. (15 minutes)
  5. After she has finished, I wait. (20 minutes)
  6. Then I am moved to a room across the hall and… I wait. (20 minutes)
  7. Doctor comes in and we high five. (Awesome second)

high-five-scrubs-turk

Alright, so the high five doesn’t actually happen but I pretend it does.

But in all honesty I can’t hate on waiting for my doctor.  Why?  Because he takes as much time as I want and/or need.  I have questions about rising sugars at night?  I’m trying to lose weight and keep going low?  I’m traveling overseas and need to figure out the time change?  Any teeny tiny thing I want to talk about, he does.  And he doesn’t rush me.  He gets answers for me.  We talk about options and different ways we can go about treating me.  He makes me feel comfortable and confident talking to him.  There’s a reason my a1c is in great shape.  So much of it has to do with him.

I hate to admit this but I will.  I was diagnosed in 1996 and after five years of living with it, I hated life.  (Diabetes life) My a1c was around a 12.8.  My doctor at the time made me feel like a terrible person.  He shamed and guilted me.  (yeah I know it’s not a word) Every time my mom drove me to the doctor I would get this pit in my stomach.  I felt like nothing I did was ever good enough so I stopped trying all together.  Oh and did I mention I was 13?  And losing weight by not taking insulin? Yeah… life.

Then I switched to the Barbara Davis Center and met Dr. Gottlieb.  Thank goodness.   At my first visit he said, “Well your a1c is a bit high but we can work to get it lower.  Let’s see what you are comfortable with and we’ll go from there.” And from there, I turned my a1c around.  It took me about three more years to get a serious grip on it but hey, I got there.  Now I am proud to say that 12.8 a1c is down to a 5.7.  I know it took a lot of work on my end but I really have to thank Dr. Gottlieb.  People say, “it takes a village to raise a child”.  In my opinion “it takes an amazing staff and doctor to keep an a1c in check”.

So when I get antsy waiting on him I have to think to myself, he’s helping another patient just like me.  I’d hate it if he shuttled me in and out under three minutes so it’s okay.  Take a deep breath and deal.

P.S.  I’ve been watching a ton of Scrubs lately so… EAAGGGGLLLEEEE!

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A False Positive

And no, I’m not talking about being pregnant.

Usually when I wake up in the morning and have to pee (like really have to go) it’s an indicator that I’m high.  Lately though, I’ve been getting a false positive.  I use the restroom and take a guess at where I’m at.  I’m thinking…maybe 237.  I test and I’m at 103.  Wait, what?  Did I drink a gallon of water the night before and not remember?  Where is this “urge” coming from? Sorry if this is more than you wanted to know but I’m sure we’ve all been there.  Happy Friday!

In the Middle of the Night…

About a week ago I had a bad low while sleeping  As I sat on my kitchen floor drinking Capri Suns and eating Crasins with my dog looking for a hand out, I started singing “In the Middle of the Night” by Billy Joel.  Then I started laughing like a madman because I thought of the line, “in the middle of the night, I go low in my sleep”.  I thought it was hilarious, though it very well could have been a side effect of the low.  But that song has stuck with me so I decided to change the words of the one and only Billy Joel, and make it into a D-Song.  So if you play Mr.Joel’s music video and sing the words below, I found it very catchy.  And now I sing it all of the time.  I may have too much time on my hands.  Oh well.  Enjoy. (and fyi Roxy is my CGM’s name)

In the middle of the night
I hear Dexcom go beep
From the mountain of pillows
To my dreams so deep
I must be feelin’ something
Something sweaty and shaky
But the sugars too low
And it’s too hard to move

Even though I know that the kitchen is there
I walk down every hall and I stop and stare
I try to fumble with the light switch off
So I can finally find what I’ve been looking for…

In the middle of the night
I go low in my sleep
Through the panic and fear
I hear Roxy go beep.

I’ve been searching for something
Taken out of my blood
Something I’d like to eat
Something to keep me in control

I don’t know why I go low at night
But now I’m tired and I don’t want to eat anymore

I hope it doesn’t take the rest of my life
Until my blood sugar stops dropping down no more

In the middle of the night
I go eating in my sleep
Through the pantry of food
To the freezer so deep
I know I’m searching for something
Something sugary sweet
That I can shove in my mouth
Hopefully a delicious treat…

In the middle of the night

I’m not sure how many carbs are in this
God knows I try to stay between the lines
I fantasize that I’m perfect as I eat
Hoping that it’s only fifteen or twenty grams..

In the middle of the night
I go up and down in my sleep
Through the sugary maze
And the trials of the “D”
We’re all looking for balance
We all want that safety
That our CGM brings
To the sleeping d-peep
In the middle of the night

Now if only Billy Joel would record it with these words… That’s tomorrow’s project!

$*!%&#@(#$*%^&@

I’m frustrated.  Expletive frustrated.  My blood sugars have been wildly out of control this week.  I keep waking up to sugars in the 300’s.  I bolus and it drops but only slightly.  I take injections usually around 10 units just so I can see a dent in my sugars.  I use increased basal rates while I’m sleep which I hate to do but I am so over being woken up by my Dexcom I don’t care anymore.  I’ve changed out pod after pod thinking maybe it’s faulty.  My insulin is fresh, my skin is clean, I’m not eating outrageous things that make me spike.  Argh…  I don’t want to blame the Omnipod but I swear I haven’t had problems like this with any other pump so I once run out of insulin in this pod (which at this rate won’t take too long) I am going back to my Animas.  Or hell… maybe even my Medtronic.  I am beyond frustrated and just want to see a number below 170 (my green line on Roxy) and stay there for more than an hour.  BLERG!  That is all. Carry on.

Why “Push My Buttons to Turn Me On”

I am a bit of a self proclaimed nerd.  I like, no, love, Battlestar Galactica.  I dress up every Halloween, sew pinafores, dye my hair, buy “finds” at thrift stores just in case it might come in handy some day all for that one day.   I recreated a scene from Titanic out of Barbies and her pink corvette sinking in my bathtub because I love creating “films”.

So when my pump arrived, I thought, score… I am now a machine.

Then the day came along when I met a boy that I liked.  And that day turned into a relationship.  And then the relationship made its way into the bedroom.  (Please stop reading here if you have no idea what may come next.  I don’t want to scar your delicate, frail mind.)  And sometimes items you use to manage your diabetes pop up in the bedroom.  Sure significant others know about finger pokes, low blood sugars, and what your pump is… but me being the nerd I am, and in my awful attempt to “flirt” I said, “Push my buttons to turn me on”.  And yes, I said it in a robot voice.  He laughed and I told myself I had a keeper.  (Keeper until the next one came along!)

But I thought the witty play on words,” turn me on” and the voice of a robot, because clearly I am hooked up to an electronic machine, might be a good ice breaker.  And it was.

So there you go.  Why I chose “Push My Buttons to Turn Me On”.

An Educated Guess

For the past week or two I’ve been waking up around 3am SUPER high.  Above 250, sometimes reaching the 300’s.  In my book, that’s a nightmare.  I wake up to a blaring Dexcom and a full bladder.  Sorry if that’s tmi, but we all know what I’m talking about.  The first couple of nights I chalked it up to something I ate that had a long lasting effect on my sugars.  A piece of cake, dinner was unusually unhealthy.  Then I thought maybe I’m stressing out and tossing and turning while I sleep.  Bad dreams?  Finally I adjusted my basal rate.  I amped it up half a unit and would wake up low so after a few nights of trial and error I finally figured my new rate.  Nothing better than guessing and hoping for perfection.

Then two days ago I swapped out my Omnipod for my Animas.  (That’s another story)  Woke up last night at 2am around 320, then at 3am at 190, then at 4am at 250, then at 6am at 170.  Test, bolus, repeat (about four times). Finally I wake up this morning at 70.

A Sugary Nightmare
A Sugary Nightmare/Last night’s numbers

WTF… Then I remembered when I switched pumps I had forgotten to change  my basal rate.  Son of a…  So tonight I try again to conquer the random “why am I going high in the middle of the night after years of it being steady” blood sugars.

Wish me luck!