Saturday, June 10, 2017

We'll Do It Live!

Please start this entry by googling "Fox news meltdown f it we'll do it live" because it's honestly wonderful. 

And now that you're back, I'll tell you a little story. It's a story about a malfunctioning pancreas, but not the pancreas that you already know about. 

One night a few weeks ago, my current pancreas died. My Omnipod, the one who has been doing the heavy lifting for the past 2.75 years, quietly flickered and buzzed its last buzz. At 6 pm on a Wednesday. 

I had only a moment to feel helpless, before I needed to spring into action. All the things I should have but don't at home--like unexpired long-acting insulin, more than 5 syringes, ANY insulin pens....yeah I had to go about acquiring those like ASAP. My dinner plans? A slice of pizza? Yes that also had to be changed/downgraded to a salad and hardboiled egg. With fruit though because you gotta keep L-I-V-I-N ya know? 

I ran to the pharmacy, I called Omnipod, I called my endo, made all the arrangements I could given that it was after hours and hoped for the best. 

And then it was just me. Me and my ratios and basal rates to calculate, since everything was stored in my pump and all of my notes and printouts from my endo were....well....somewhere in my "important things" drawer. Me and a syringe which I'd previously NEVER EVEN USED BEFORE because I had a pump within 2 months of diagnosis and before that I'd always used pens. 

For the first time in almost 3 years, I was "managing" my diabetes by hand. Going analog. And it was ridiculously, supremely difficult. My basal rates? Obviously not cutting it since the pump is more effective delivery, so I needed wayyyy more than I thought. Rising BG rates? Impossible to know if it's from an underbolus or not enough basal, and no way to do a temp basal increase to try and figure things out. And how long is the long in long-acting anyway?

And did I mention that it hurt? Every bite of food was a shot. Every mistake was a shot. Not just a quick "bloop" on a discreet device. No it was a full on, pull out a syringe, draw up the liquid, find a spot, pinch, shoot, ouch, rinse, repeat type thing. Diabetes is normally exhausting. But this? This was draining. This was a lot to live with. This was intrusive. This was missing work and cancelling a date and taking a lot of long walks and frantic mental calculation and rude stares from people again. 

And you know what else was hard? Saying goodbye to my PDM. I haven't been able to mail it back yet. I'm weirdly attached I guess. It's been with me since almost my very moment of diagnosis, something I've held onto. It's gone absolutely everywhere with me. I've spent nights curled around it, covered in glucose tab dust and tears of exhaustion. It's seen mountaintops and deserts and oceans and multiple continents. It's seen every meal (ok well most meals). It's the first thing I grab in every fire drill. It's seen me grow a lot and it's not something that's easy for me to let go of I guess. 

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