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Valentine’s Day

Oh and by the way, HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY to everyone!! I hope you all had a great one. My husband planned a weekend getaway for us! We had a great time. It was very relaxing. We left the puppy with a friend and it was a much needed getaway! A beautiful hotel, amazing meal, and a trip to the zoo! I love the zoo. 🙂

And I stayed away from MOST of the treats. Thank goodness my husband doesn’t get me chocolates for Valentine’s Day, because I LOVE chocolates and don’t need them! We ate subway for lunch, and had salmon with crab, veggies, and rice for dinner, and Greek food for lunch the next day. It was all pretty healthy! Valentine’s Day can be hard on diabetics! Even the sugar free candy still has almost as many carbs in it as the normal stuff.

Insulin Pump Bolus Wizard

At my last doctors visit, my doctor told me that there is no way she will be able to get my Regence Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance to approve a CBGM. They say there are no studies showing that it’s helped anyone avoid lows or highs, and until there are, they won’t approve it. It’s ” investigational” for now. Bad news.

So she said she wants to work extra hard with me on avoiding my lows/highs. Right now she is more concerned with my lows, and so am I. I am tired of them! Plus, I’m starting to worry that my body is losing it’s awareness that I am having them, because I have so many. Not good.

So, we went over my last week or so of sugars. Unfortunately I still don’t have the software to just plug my meter in to my computer and have it plug the numbers in, so I had to manually enter the number into a spreadsheet which was very time consuming. I really need to get that software! I’ve just been drowning in medical bills and have a hard time even coming up with the extra $50 for it. I know it will help so much with finding trends and I’m sure I would be able to achieve better control over my sugars if I got it. I really need to get it.

Anyway, after looking over my sugars, she asked if I’m using the bolus wizard. I said no. When I got diabetes, I started with shots so I learned how to count my carbs and figure out how much insulin I needed. I didn’t want to forget how to do that by having a machine do it for me, so I never set it up when I got the pump. That was back when I ALWAYS had a 1 unit to 10 carbs ratio so it wasn’t hard to figure anyway. NOW, my morning is different from my afternoon, and my afternoon and morning are different from my evening!

So we put in all the settings to get the bolus wizard ready to go. I’ve only been using it for a week, but so far I think I like it. I still haven’t perfected it…I still have highs after lunch, and lows after dinner. But I am tweeking it and every day I’m excited to see what my sugar will read 2 hours after a meal. Did I fix the problem with yesterday’s tweeks? I’m getting closer!

So, I would recommend using the bolus wizard if you’re not. At least give it a try. You can always go back! This just takes the human error factor out of it. And I’ve noticed that I’m taking almost 10 units less a days since I’ve started using it. I always like taking less insulin!

This article is very interesting about using a special tattoo ink that will change color based on what your blood glucose reading is. I’m not for having a huge tattoo, but they say just a small one would work and the ink wouldn’t have to go as deep into the skin as a regular tattoo’s ink.

I like the idea of not having to constantly poke myself to check my blood sugar, plus have a tattoo that changes color is pretty cool to! Check it out:

http://dsc.discovery.com/news/2009/02/12/diabetes-tattoo.html

I can’t agree more with this vlog by six until me! Diabetes is an invisible disease. People have NO idea how rotten diabetics feel when their sugar drops to low, or goes to high.

It is so hard for me to work, drive, think, eat, function at all while having a low blood sugar. And it is painful to have a high blood sugar. My feet ache and feel swollen and hot, and my body aches like it would before you get the flu. Just because you can’t SEE the pain, doesn’t mean it isn’t there. And in this case, it isn’t only pain, but inability to function at times!

We DO need a cure, badly! Not to mention all the complications bad blood sugars cause in the future……nerve damage causing eye problems, heart problems, numbness, even amputations for some….the list goes on!

Even though you can’t see our pain, it is there.

Here is the vlog by six until me and I know that SO many type 1 diabetics can relate! *this is linked with sixuntilme’s permission*

http://sixuntilme.com/blog2/2009/02/vlogging_while_low.html

Ok, so I’ve heard of a few different things in the past 6 months that could be a cure for type 1 diabetes. Now lets get it done! I want the cure, not just all this hope for one!

This article discusses how genetically modified lettuce cured type 1 diabetes in mice. It basically fooled the bacteria in the gut, convincing it’s immune cells to accept rather than attack!

“Helped by bacteria in the gut, the lettuce-delivered human insulin genes quickly ‘teach’ the gut’s immune cells to accept rather than attack them – permanently quelling the autoimmune response that is type 1 diabetes in a matter of weeks.”

To continue this research on human studies, they need 20 million dollars. Seems to me that taking into consideration the cost of medical supplies for type 1 diabetes, they should be able to get that funding! Let me tell you, if I had 20 mil, I would fun it myself! Can’t someone write a letter to Bill Gates or Oprah??

http://www.prohealth.com/diabetes/library/showarticle.cfm?libid=14297

click on the above link to read the article.

I for one, am ready for the cure!

Hello! Sorry it’s been so long since I’ve posted!! A LOT has been going on! My husband and I got a new puppy this weekend! We’ve been talking about getting a dog for a few years but we just never felt the time was right. They are a LOT of work and require us to be home more than we usually are. We were going to wait until we had children since I’m planning to stay home with the kids and we thought that would be easier with the puppy/dog as well.

Well, hubby’s co-worker got a new puppy for his 15 year old son for Christmas. He got her a 6 week old AKC yellow lab. I LOVE kittens and puppies so of course I wanted to go meet her! They just picked her up 1/17/09 so she was still so tiny when we went to visit on 1/24/09.  She was such a good girl, and very smart. They had already taught her to sit, and to stay on the kitchen floor and off the carpet. She did well in her kennel already to! Hubby had been telling me all the things his co-worker had already gotten for her….a huge kennel that she could still use when she was full grown, a couple blankets, food, food dishes, treats, a brush, a collar, shampoo, urine neutralizer, bitter apple spray to put on things so she wouldn’t chew on them, toys, bones….the list when on and on. Not to mention how much SHE cost. AKC dogs are expensive! It confirmed in my mind that we couldn’t afford a dog right now! All those things were very expensive, not to mention the food we’d always have to buy, and the vet visits.

So, we went to visit the cutest little puppy in the world. My husband fell in love and the whole way home talked about dogs. There are a lot of positive sides….I’d love to have a dog for protection. Even if it’s not a guard dog, the bark will usually scare predator’s away. I’d also love to have a dog to go jogging with me, and get me to go at least for a walk every day. And to go spend time at the park with, playing fetch. A dog would be a great companion for going to the beach, camping, or to the lake! But, the expense and the work involved pushed the idea out of my mind.

The next morning hubby got a phone call from his co-worker. His son wasn’t taking care of the puppy and they had a talk with him about it. They said if he wasn’t going to commit to taking care of her, they were going to have to get rid of her. He said he just didn’t know all the responsibility involved and with sports, friends, and school he just didn’t have time to take care of her. SO they wanted to offer her to us before placing an ad in the paper. They’d give her to us WITH all the things they had bought for her, for $400. I knew that was a great deal but it was still a lot of money and still a lot of work.

Hubby and I talked about it for hours, and finally decided that we were ready for a dog. We called his co-worker back and accepted. We picked her up and brought her home, and she is pretty much the cutest thing ever. We named her Emma. We are already in love.

Emma at 7 weeks old

Emma at 7 weeks old

We are enjoying raising a puppy. It is a lot of work, just like everyone says. We figure it’s good practice for having kids!! We are getting up 2 – 3 times a night to let her out, and she keeps us busy from when we get home until we go to bed. Luckily she is very good in her kennel and she is great about waiting until we can let her out before using the bathroom. We are able to come home for our lunch break everyday which is great for letting her out. She is a blessing.

Having her has made me forget about everything else though! Yesterday I forgot to put my pump on after my shower because I ended up following her around right after. When I remembered I got it hooked up but got distracted by her again and forgot to un-suspend it! Sheesh! Get it together Michelle! It took me 2 hrs longer than normal to get dinner ready, and it wasn’t my normal balanced, nutritious meal….it was just a “get something on the table!” meal.

Somehow I am being blessed though, because my blood sugars have been really good. They have actually been pretty good for the past month! I still have a few slip-ups, but compared to the past 9 months, the last couple have showed a lot of improvement! Hopefully I can keep them in this range!

One question I do have for all your dog owners…..Emma LOVES to chew and she seems to seek out my pump tubing and try to chew it. It would be very unpleasant if she managed to succeed before I caught her. Any suggestions?

Wearing (hiding) the pump

I don’t know about you guys, but I for one, got tired of all the questions people had to ask about my pump when they could see it.

When I first got my insulin pump, I wore it on my jeans waistline using the clip Minimed provided. So it stuck out like a pager or cell phone on a clip would, only bigger and with tubing coming out the top. If there is one thing I try to avoid, it’s sticking out.

I would get several questions everyday from people. Here’s what a normal conversation would go like:

“What is that?”

“It’s an insulin pump.”

“What does it do?”

“I’m a type 1 diabetic, which means I need insulin to survive. This pump gives me the insulin I need.”

“Oh. How does it do that?”

(the part I hated explaining)

“Well, I put in a small cannula that attaches to the put through the tubing and it gives me the insulin.”

“Can I see?” (kinda rude….personal space people)

“Sure.” (pull up shirt a little to reveal infusion site)

(Look of shock on questioners face….GASP) “That whole thing is in you? That must hurt!”

“No, the whole thing is not in me, just a thin flexible cannula. It’s thin a short like a needle, but flexible so it doesn’t hurt me.”

“Oh.” (with a look that says they don’t understand at all and think I’m a freak machine)

It’s just easier to avoid that conversation all together! So, right away I tried to find ways to hide it. The tubing doesn’t always make it completely hidden, and it is a good size rectangular chunk of plastic so to some extent it is visible, but my favorite hiding place is just my back jeans pocket. The tubing comes out the top and I stuff it down my under-ware, so some people may see a little clear tubing coming out of my back pocket, but no one has asked about it. And you can tell something is in my back pocket, but it could be anything….a cell phone, IPod, PDA….they don’t know.

I do go through jeans faster because they get worn out where the pump always is. Darn it! But it’s worth it.

Another good hiding spot is in my bra. As I am not well endowed, that one is a little tougher for me to pull off. I have to have the right shirt to hide the rectangular lump. But when I do have the right shirt, it works like a charm!

If I’m wearing a low cut dress I will just wear some tight under-ware and put it in the top of them, on the waist band part. That works great, although sometimes it slips down and that is uncomfortable! I’ve also had to fall out completely and all the sudden it’s swinging below my skirt between my legs. No one has caught that before me YET. Or if they have, they haven’t said anything. 🙂

Anyone have any other good hiding spots or similar issues? Anyone else tired of all the questions??