Saturday, January 30, 2016

Mic Drop

When you drink several beers, eat some candy, and have several extravagant yet low(ish) carb meals....and through some miracle of long walks between bars, Afrezza, and basal insulin, you make it home without a single high blood sugar and you're all like...

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Sweet Dreams

You guys know the drill. You hear the three short buzzes calling in the middle of the night, or awake to the cold sweats and deep feelings of paranoia. Knock knock, who's there, it's a late night low blood sugar. So you reach for the snacks beside the bed (if you're lucky), knock back the juice box, and like hell you're about to go brush your teeth down the hall.

My dentist friends (no seriously. They are my friends and they are professional teeth carers) pressured me into a new practice, swishing with baking soda and water. I changed over one of my water bottles to a diluted solution and it tastes flipping nasty and I keep accidentally drinking it during the day, but if it will keep me from having George Washington-style dentures when I'm 45 then I guess I'm into it. 

Saturday, January 16, 2016

To All the Things I've Had to Eat

To the thoughtfully chosen and consumed apples, oranges, and bananas.

To the candy and candy-flavored protein bars before bed, a childhood dream that doesn't quite live up to the hype.

To the midnight Lara bars, to the mid-hike glucose gels.

To the snacks of slightly concerned friends, to the bear bags and canisters of more concerned friends.

To the juice, apple cider, fruit punch, pouches, boxes, cups.

To the good choices, carefully measured out tablets and singular pieces of dried fruit.

To the choices that lead to roller coasters of emotions and exhaustion, like cups and bowls of granola or ice cream.

To the second dinners, breakfasts, and unscheduled snacks.

I think it might be fair to say that I've hated you all. 

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Silent But Deadly

I generally choose to coexist peacefully with my diabetes. There are many reasons for this, including counting my blessings that this is the worst I'm hit with. Including lack of other options--to rage against diabetes would be pointless and even more exhausting. Including even gratitude, for its grounding presence and the healthy habits it encourages in me.

But lately, rage has been seeping in. It started a week or so ago, when I was walking to work and reminiscing that I'd actually had a really nice night's sleep. And then, all of a sudden, I remembered that I had been woken up no less than three times the night before. From a buzzing alarm on my OmniPod reminding me to check my BG 2 hours after putting on a new pod (never mind the fact that I wear a CGM and therefore don't need that reminder--I'm unable to turn it off). From a low BG that danced around 85 and sent buzzes off twice on my Dexcom before it finally calmed down. And that was a good night. I suddenly got so angry. Angry that this was acceptable to me, that I didn't even notice or really remember what it feels like to sleep the entire, whole night through. 

Since then, I'll say it. The buzzes have been pissing me off. They ruin my sleep, disturb my yoga classes. The incessant beeping of my Pod every 3 days--I know it's going to expire! I know it did expire! I'll keep it on as long as I please, since I paid so much freaking money for it!! I'm angry. I'm frustrated. I feel like my devices are running the show, and while I don't want to give them up since they allow for such well-calibrated maintenance of my health, they are causing other problems for my health. Mostly my mental health I guess. 

I am angry. I'm angry that other people's pancreases are free, and my insulin costs me 2 pairs of Lululemon leggings every month and a weekend vacation getaway every 3 months for my Pods and sensors. 

I'm angry that there are lumps on me when I wear my clothes and that my students can feel my pump when they hug me and that there are rashes and scars all over my body.

I'm angry that I have to poke holes in myself constantly and that at least one of my devices seems to constantly need something from me. 

I'm angry at the moments that are, if not stolen from me, at least force me to fight for them, through the soup and fog of a high blood sugar or the exhaustion and fuzziness of a low blood sugar. 

I'm angry at having to explain myself, at feeling like people worry about me, at constantly worrying about myself.

I'm angry at how much of my brain power I waste on thinking about food. 

I don't feel like issuing a disclaimer here. I know there are people worse off than me. I know that everyone has their stuff. I know that my life was not perfect, nor even necessarily better, before diabetes. I know that I'm lucky that I even got to experience so much of my life before diabetes. I know all that and I'm still angry. It's not that it feels unfair. It's perfectly fair. It just also sucks. And I'm angry about it. 

I'm hoping that writing will help me relax, because stewing in it hasn't been working so far. It's been eating at me, creeping in whenever I hear a buzz or see a flashing screen or buy more crap to keep myself alive. Maybe saying some of these things out loud will allow me to shake them off and move on. Because while I do see a future for myself with better management, and hopefully less effort, if I'm being honest, I don't see a future without devices. I certainly don't see one without diabetes. 

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Surfing the Crimson Wave

Yeah, it's not what you think it is.

But occasionally, very occasionally, I hit what I like to call a "sweet spot" or a "gusher" with my cannula. So when I pull the Pod off my body, aside from the usual sting of the tape ripping off, I also get a stream of blood running down my body, extremely disproportionate in size and velocity to the tiny, tiny hole the cannula created.

(Cannula=small, thin, plastic tube that does the dirty work of piping insulin into me)

It doesn't hurt, but it is a lot of blood, and I have to fumble around to contain it and recently it cost me a PJ shirt. The funny thing is, is that I'm pretty sure this is what people picture when they (I'm sure extremely rarely) imagine what it's like to change an insulin pump. So this is just a PSA, folks. It's not like pulling a tooth. You don't get a sweet view of my inner organs working like that fistulated cow I mentioned a few months ago. It's just a small mark, hardly noticeable, except when it's not.