Thursday, May 25, 2006

In sickness...

It was a week ago today, sitting right at my desk at work. Ugh, cramps. I popped a few Advil and tried to make it look I was working while I waited for the medicine to flow through my veins. 15 minutes later, nothing, in fact it was worse. The pain got so bad that I started walking around the building, wincing at every turn. When I almost passed out in the ladies room, I knew we had a problem.
I made it back to my desk and checked, always trying to rule out some crazy diabetes issue. Nope, 178, that was just fine 2 hours after my breakfast. I finally admitted to my co-worker that something was not right. Fast forward 20 minutes, and I was in my co-workers car, on the way to the hospital.
My husband met me there and we got checked in. Eventually they confirmed what we had suspected. I had an ovarian cyst rupture. I had one a few years ago, but I don’t remember it hurting so much. I figured out that the only place to place my pump was on the neck of my gown, at least then everyone would know I had diabetes.
2 blood draws (neither of which had an A1c in there, I asked) 4 ultra sounds, an attempted IV and one shot of morphine later, they said there wasn’t much they could do. I was feeling better by that point and just wanted to go home. No problem.
My husband was the one that pointed out that not once the entire 7 hours we were in the ER did anyone ask or perform a blood sugar check on me. Not once. It’s not like I was hiding anything, my pump was on the front of my gown. I was astounded. I had heard that in hospital care of diabetes is shotty at best (sorry, to be punny). But this really amazed me.
I guess it’s true that you are your own health advocate, and have to know what is best for you. (And if you don’t / can’t hopefully you have a supportive friend/parent/spouse that can step in.) I did in fact need a correction as my blood sugar creped up. I checked to see what the morphine was doing, and if I needed to eat anything before they took me for the ultra sound.

3 nuggets that I picked up on in the ER.

  1. My am my own best doctor when it comes to my diabetes.
  2. My husband will try and tip anyone (I thought he was crazy tipping the Christmas tree guy, but when he was worried if he had to tip the orderly that took me to the ultrasound suite, I knew we had a problem)
  3. The flu. Yes, I ended up being sicker from going to the hospital than I was before I went.

    (Feeling much better now, thanks.)

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Here comes the sun

The New England area has been under water for the last week and a half. Several towns north of Boston are flooded and life has been forced to stop for the time being. Schools and towns have been forced to shut down and wait for the waters to recede. Today is the first day that the rain has ceased, and the sun is coming out of hiding.

For most, there is a renewed spring in their step and a feeling that “this too shall pass” and summer will soon be on it’s way.

Unfortunately, for my friends, the rain may as well still be pouring down. We recently found out that in our group of friends, the younger brother of one of us was tragically killed in a boating accident. He was 21 years old. Just days away from his college graduation. I never met him, but for some reason I am very emotional for the loss. Perhaps it is because I can remember the hope and promise that came with college graduation. The wonderful years of true self discovery that followed and have lead me to where I am today. My heart aches for the parents, who lost their youngest child. Contemplating starting a family soon, I can only begin to imagine the devastation that something like this would cause.

I was going to share about how Ryan and I went to San Diego this past weekend. We saw the zoo and the monkeys. We dined on great food and really enjoyed the time together. But rather, I will remind you, as life tends to remind us in an occasion like this… to love and truly live your life. Sure, there are parts of life that stink. People don’t like their jobs or have struggles with family or money. It’s all too easy to look up from life and not know where the last weeks, months or years have gone. Many of us struggle with diabetes in our bodies or in our children, and wonder how or why this happened to us.

I hope that having struggles with my health only helps me see how intensely sweet life really is. Sure living with diabetes is scary. I see the complications that this disease can cause set into my friends, and I worry for myself. I can feel overburdened by the pump and testing my sugar, always worrying about highs and lows. The oh so real and concerning “what if’s” of life. Today I am renewing my commitment to see the joy in everyday events, and remember that God will only give us as much as we can handle and learn from.

So in memory of our friend “Auggie” I ask you to smile a little more often, compliment your fellow neighbors, give your children the extra bedtime story, and acknowledge that this life we live is only as wonderful as we let it be. When the rain comes, go outside and splash in the puddles, watch in awe as trees drink in the water to nourish their leaves. Remember to see the beauty in everyday life. Let the people you love know you love them, and most importantly, make sure that in this busy world, you take the time to love yourself.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Me too!

Accent: Apparently I have an upstate NY twang. Occasionally when a little boozed, a Boston the’reh, or foourh.
Booze: Chardonay, micro brew beer
Chore I Hate: folding laundry
Dog or Cat: dog- Shannon Dog or “s-dog” She is 13 and super fabalous.
Essential Electronics: My laptop.
Favorite Perfume: Romance but I often forget to put it on.
Gold or Silver: Silver
Hometown: Rochester, NY
Insomnia: Rarely
Job Title: Project and Account Manager
Kids: Only if s-dog counts
Living arrangements: fixed up house outside of Boston with my hubbie
Most admirable traits: I never arrive anywhere empty handed.
Number of sexual partners: none of your business
Overnight hospital stays: nose surgery after a playground accident in 4th grade
Phobias: dying young
Quote: Sometimes on the day to a dream, you get lost and find a better one.
Religion: Catholic
Siblings: 1 older brother
Time I wake up: 7:30ish
Unusual talent or skill: ability to check my bs and take insulin (pre-pump) while driving
Vegetables I love: corn (I know it’s a starch but most people don’t know that!)
Worst habit: Leaving diet coke cans all over the house.
X-rays: Most recently my hip, but teeth, both wrists, chest at some point in my life
Yummy foods I make: delicious chicken parm, broccli and corn caserole
Zodiac sign: Virgo

This is my pretty princess dog wearing the latest creation from floral school. I could not help myself!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

the eyes have it

update: I made the appointment. Sometimes I just need to sulk for a bit before I do what I know is right.

Monday, May 01, 2006

When do you go?

Growing up with diabetes in the 1980’s a lot of the “motivation” for sticking to your doctor’s plan was fear based. “Do you want to grow up and lose your legs?” or “Keep cheating and you will end up being blind from your diabetes.” My all time favorite was when my mom was instructed that any blood sugar over 180 was to be written in red and placed on the family’s refrigerator. Although pretty shocking now, it seemed to work for me and a few of my diabetes cohorts from camp.

Anyway, in part because I was so warned about dreaded complications, I tend to look for them. I often wonder if what I am feeling is because I hurt/strained/bruised something on my body or if the pain/itch/burn is caused by my diabetes. While I generally have a positive attitude, I pretty much assume that every physical change in my body is diabetes related.

Case in point, a few years ago, I started wearing flip flops to work. It was a pretty casual place and it just seemed to be the thing to do at the time. After a while my feet started to ache. They would get so cold that they would actually be quite painful. I brought it up to my doctor at one of my checkups. He was perplexed that I was feeling anything out of the ordinary, and was sure it was not nerve damage. He checked my feet said they were just like any non-diabetic and to just keep and eye on things. He also suggested that perhaps I try different shoes.

Long story short, my feel were painfully cold because it was May in New England and I was wearing flip flops. There was an air conditioning vent blowing on my feet! It was all fixed when I started to wear closed toed shoes. Duh. In my head I was adding a wheelchair ramp to my house and figuring how I could get around when my feet were taken away.

As of late, I am seeing a lot more floaters in my eyes. Mainly when I am at work. Is it the sun coming through the windows? Is it really worse than it used to be? Is it because my control is assumed to be tighter now that I am on the pump. (Although my A1c when I started was 6.8, so I can’t imagine it’s changed that much.) I feel like I should go get them checked out, but am scared. I was just there in January and everything was fine. It’s not any of those black spots or flashes that they always ask me about. I know, I know, I should go and check it out. But, you see, I am already figuring in my head when I could schedule laser treatments to resolve whatever mess they may find.

It would be my first visible complications of having diabetes, and I don’t think I am ready for that.