General Gremlin check up!

– diabetes. Pump is going well. Had one day of 3 failed sets in day and being up half the night minitoring but in general I’m doing well. Today I managed to do both my dog’s walks in one day without any hypos. They were long walks too. If anything I see a rise in levels even when I start at 6 or 7. Research suggests the walk is the cause as it doesn’t happen when I don’t ie there is no pattern. I really do think my body thinks I’m still a caveman and every movement clearly means a mammoth is chasing me down and I need to RUN. I will cackle if I’m someone who has to take insulin to be active. Cackle.

– endomitriosis. I had my first depo injection 2 months ago and at first it didn’t seem to have much impact. I felt terrible. All my symptoms came back and I was in constant pain wondering why I ever thought this existance was normal and then suddenly…nothing. No hip pain, no feeling like my insides were exploding, no rectal or vaginal pain, no feeling like someone was trying to pull my digestive system out of my arsehole, no cramps, no periods, nothing. With a severe reduction in the number of headaches I usually have. I’m really happy with this treatment so far. To be fair, I may have periods. This is not the longest time I’ve not had one off the pill but I sure wouldn’t miss them. I feel like I’ve maybe gained some weight but that came around me starting the pump so I’m not sure if it is inactivity or injections of my imagination. If I have and this is all I’d take it over my symptoms but if I gained more and couldn’t lose it by lowering my daily calorie intake after a diet than I’d have to consider dropping the injections. My insulin resistence dropped so much when I lost weight before so I don’t want to make it difficult for my body. There are other endomitriosis treatments after all and my diabetes will trump any of my other conditions in a heartbeat. We shall see. Of course, in the long wrong my bone density might require stopping the injections anyway so I will always keep researching this condition.

 

– Anxiety. Dealing really well with this I have to say! In a general sense I think I’m doing awesome on the pump. I see numbers that are out of target and I don’t freak out which I did before. I go higher and the pump tells me not to give insulin and I accept it and don’t freak out. I just generally am not freaking out over this whole insulin pump thing and that is a huge deal. Plus I’ve been coping going out and about despite the fact that I need to learn what I can and can’t do without going hypo all over again. It is like being a new diabetic, really. And my body keeps doing the oposide of what ‘usual’ predicts but yeah, calm. I even had people come and fit new flooring in my house and having strangers in working didn’t freak me out either. Yes, I hid myself away with a wee packed lunch but I wasn’t anxious when before I would have been so really proud of my progress.

– Depression. This is the one that is being more of a grumbly Gremlin. I do feel I’m struggling more but there is no point in going to the doctor until after Christmas. I did, after all, just lose my cat, my grandmother and start an insulin pump within 3 weeks of each other so I know it would be ‘wait and see, this may be normal’. I know in myself I wasn’t ok before my grandmother fell ill but there you go. I am holding it together with this all far better than I thought I would but I do still feel that in general my mood is a lot lower. However, I don’t think an increase in my current medication is the answer as my anxiety is improving so I might be looking at seperating my medication into two seperate things to tackle each gremlin. Citalopram is being a combo ass kicker at the moment. Its kicks are just getting less effective from one foot. I think maybe having 10mg of citalopram and another depression med or just two new meds might be the answer. 10mg of citalopram apparently really only impacts anxiety where 20mg starts impacting depression. I take 30mg so…Idk. Idk but I know this current amount isn’t working but I am not wasting both doc and my time going now when I know he won’t do anything.

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Diabetic Maths Students

Diabetic Maths Students

Insulin pump is going well. Nothing major to report. Being a professional vegetable to see if my ratios and basals are working or not. Saw this on fb though and SO TRUE. Diabetes is hard work, especially if you’re crap with numbers like me.

Just a though…

I think the hardest part of any health condition is not living with it but with living around other people. There is always someone that thinks they know better than you and your doctor, nurse or health care professional. There is always one with someone to say that hurts and cuts deep and that you can’t quite shift. The hardest part is standing your ground and doing what is best for you and not what makes someone else happy. But that is what we have to do.

Insulin Pump day 1

So, I was hooked up to Rogue the pump today and officially started pumping that insulin! Felt ruddy awful until lunch time with dawn phenomenon and no basal insulin floating around but thankfully, after a session of button pushing with the Animas people I feel a lot more confident about this pump. I got pump set up without a lot of anxiety and to be honest the moment itself was a little anti-climatic. Click, you’re on. I’ve yet to notice any insulin making its way along, even on my bolus doses so I was paranoid for the first few hours that I wasn’t getting any even though I had seen the set drip insulin before attaching it. Being told that sometimes someone finds the cannula kinks and fails without them noticing my anxiety latched onto it and I was sure it would be me!

However, 3 o’clock hopped along, 2 and a half hours after lunch and my blood sugar had dropped by 5mmol so I was released from the hospital. I feel confident that I can do this. I know i will cry, scream, hate everything and possibly hate my pump but before I went today I didn’t know if I could wrap my head around the buttons. Could I physically tell this machine to give me a unit of insulin at a certain time of the day without setting the world on fire. I wasn’t sure. Now I am. Yes, I can. Whether I can tell it to give me the right insulin at the right time of the day is the challenge to be met but I feel I have the tools now.

Since I was started my levels have actually remained pretty steady. They are in the teens but steady and for 8 hours in I’m pretty damn happy with that. I know the ups downs and roundabouts are coming and coming soon but I think it is good for my confidence to have these first few hours of it showing it can work. I started the pump for my overnight and early morning levels though so I’m kind of expecting things to go pear shaped at 4am but I will handle that at 4am.

I had a few anxious moments this morning but mostly I remained calm and I am so proud of myself for that. New faces, new health professionals, new gear, new questions, new answers, new life and on the back of a two hour and two bus journey for an 18 mile distance. There were a lot of bumps that even 6 months ago would have had me a panic stricken mess but I dealt with each thing in turn.

Even treating hypos will be different from now but I have a laminated sheet of hypo rules with a flowchart and the same for hypers.  So even my Neanderthal hypo/hyper brains can figure out what to do.

So yes, for day one I’m proud, pleased and cautiously optimistic.

Day 8 – Being Diagnosed with Type 1

Day 8 - Being Diagnosed with Type 1

I was very lucky in that I was not very ill. For a few months I had been more tired than usual, peeing a lot and drinking anything I could get my hands on. Being type one herself my mum suspected diabetes and so on the first of April 1997 I was taken down to the doctors (I detest April Fool’s day because of this. It wasn’t a joke for me. So, I get flashbacks). I can remember going to the loo not long before we went in and after the doctor heard what mum had to say, he agreed it might be D and asked for a urine sample. That was the first traumatic part. I didn’t need the loo. I was no longer allowed any juice with sugar in it so I was bought diet ribina, the only juice available in the shop near the doctor. I can remember hating the taste of it, screaming I didn’t want it, being forced to drink it and then being made to sit on the loo in the doctors till I needed a wee. It wasn’t a lot of fun. Quick test from the doc and he calmly said it looked like diabetes and I was to be taken into Sick Kids in Edinburgh. I was six.

We can’t have moved with a lot of urgency because there was time for my mum to call my father at his work and get him to come home so we could go together. Given they were seperated and things were rather bitter between them that was very odd to me and perhaps the first sign that something major was wrong.

I walked into the hospital under my own power and I’m pretty sure my blood was only 23 which, while not good, wasn’t as bad as it could have been. The only other traumatic moment of my diagnosis was, to be fair, pretty horendous. A student nurse was to take blood from my arms and on six occasions she failed to hit a vein. It was SO painful and I was screaming my head off and had to be pinned down by my parents. It is the only memory I have of them working together. I even remember the green jumper I was wearing. It had a Cat and A, B,C on it. After that I wasn’t all that bothered. In fact I was quite smug about knowing things about diabetes before I could be told. I don’t remember ever practicing injecting things but I can remember being led off the ward into a side room to be given my injections by a nurse. I was miffed I didn’t have the same insulin as my mum but I wasn’t afraid of my diagnosis as far as I can recall. I think I was only in a couple of days because mum knew what she was doing and I wasn’t very high blood sugar wise so…yeah while it had its traumatic moments I got off pretty lightly in comparison to some people.

Day 7 – Diabetes and Pre-Diagnosis life.

Day 7 - Diabetes and Pre-Diagnosis life.

I can’t really remember before. I was diagnosed at age 6 and I had only had one year at school without being diabetic. My mother is diabetic so I never drank sugary drinks or ate a great deal of sweets or cakes. I was used to insulin bottles in the fridge and synringes in the cupboards. I knew how to treat a hypo and what diabetes was. At first my life didn’t change too much.

The diabetes didn’t change things at first. It was as I became older I realised my life was different but I guess at 6 you’re more sheltered. You’re not going swimming with friends alone or trying to pack all your stuff into a cute bag for the cinema. For the first few years I maintained a great HBA1c on two injections a day and I only tested my blood 3 times a day, in the morning (with insulin,) dinner (with insulin) and before bed unlessI felt high or low. I’ve always had awareness and they just didn’t check things as much back then as they do now.

To be honest, I hate reading about children diagnosed now because it sounds utterly torturous. My HBA1c was constantly between 8.0 and 8.5 as a child which was the target of the time. 7.5 and 8.5 was what children were asked to achieve in Edinburgh. So yeah, before…I don’t remember before. I don’t miss what I can’t remember having. I am sad and was sad that I couldn’ t have what I saw next to me, never behind.

Day 6 Exercise and Diabetes

Day 6 Exercise and Diabetes

I don’t. I can’t. My diabetes is currently very tempermental. Walking is really all I can do without guarenteeing myself a hypo or a hyper (yeah exercise can make your blood glucose rise). My exercise consists of two walks each day with my dog and not very long ones. I have a Lhasa Apso, called Nico, so they are not long walk dogs which is good cause I can’t do long walks.

I’ve tried everything in the book to try and fit exercise in without things going wrong but my condition is just too brittle so doctors advised I stick to my dog walking and be very capable with everything else. I’ve managed a few workouts on the wii but they are not pushing me too hard and I’v enever dared go past 20 minutes since my diabetes crashed. Only twice have I avoided a hypo despite following all the ‘rules’.

I used to manage to exercise just fine and as a kid I was always on my bike, scooter, blades or running around like a daft thing in spite of my diabetes. P.E. was a hit or a miss at high school but I was lucky in that I mostly had it after break time or lunch time so I could fit in snacks/lower insulins to make it work. It was just when I became an adult that my diabetes decided exercise wasn’t for it. Hope with my pump I can try a little more. My mum does a zumba class with her diabetes and seems to have a lot of fun so I’d like to try that maybe.