Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Unhappy Today

Yesterday I had my AlC appointment, one that I'd moved out a few weeks because I knew my numbers had been high.

I blamed this on my mother being seriously ill since November, resulting in a lot of stress and poor eating patterns (oh yeah, we can throw in Xmas, Valentine's Day and Easter too).

I had a very sleepless night and thought that it would be nice if the clinic went back to their old ways of mailing you the results vs. getting them while you're there. That way I wouldn't have to explain myself to the doc.

Mean nurse comes in and puts the bp cuff on the same arm they'd drawn 5 tubes of blood out of. I suggest using the other arm, and she's already inflating it. A big arc of blood shoots out, onto the floor, the desk, my t-shirt and hair.

Doc comes in and asks what the hell happened and I started sobbing - since I take brain meds, I rarely cry, and this startled me. After things were cleaned up, he asks how I am and I start crying again, saying my mother's been sick and I'm having a hard time dealing with it-
and oh, by the way, my sugars have been very high.

He swings the computer screen around and says, "yes, you're AlC is higher than last time - it's up to 7.5".

7.5 - WTF - I was expecting at least 9%. This must be a lab error - wrong patient, wrong day, something is screwed up.

"No, Kathy - that's you on the screen. Now let's just take a look at your records. Hmmmmm. The numbers do seem pretty high at times."

He asks if I have any other issues to address, and leaves. I drift out, feeling like diabetes is always trying to play games - show me that I'm not as smart as I think I am.......I hate it. This was just as bad as someone who expects a lower readng and it comes back high. The unexpected. Unpredictable. Major suckage.

I then go back to the counter and ask to speak to the doc again.

"Maybe I have anemia."
"No, Kathy, you don't have anemia. We did a full blood count."
"Maybe I have some other problem with my red blood cells - something life-threatening."
"That's highly unlikely."

Mean nurse, who is leafing through a Crate & Barrel catalog, looks at me like I'm a crazywoman. At that point, I sure felt like it.

I have the right to expect some consistency - this is the first A1C that I've been way off at guessing, and I feel stupid and inadequate. Diabetes does not have a right to do this to me. That big old troll needs to stay under the bridge.


Scott K. Johnson said...

Kathy! There is no "equals" sign in diabetes. We are just not able to figure it all out most of the time.

I say - take the pleasant surprise and run with it! And I think you're being way too hard on yourself. It is GOOD news that your A1C is not as high as you thought it would be. Gather that momentum and roll along with it!

My jaw dropped when you talked about the blood spraying out of your arm! My goodness! I've never heard of such a thing - but can understand how it might happen!

I got an e-mail from Sara saying she will be in the area in early June. We're trying to set something up for Sunday, 6/3, late in the afternoon. Are you available? I would LOVE a chance to meet you too and give you a big HUG!!! I'm going to try to gather the local bloggers and see if we can organize a group meeting!

Zazzy said...

My last A1c was like 7.2, I think. I was expecting in the 9s too. Sometimes, understanding what is going on seems impossible.

I'm glad for you that it wasn't as bad as you thought. Now, both of us need to get back on track. Oh, I'm waiting for my current results - I just sent my blood off to Stanford as part of a study a week ago.

BetterCell said...

Kathy......First I like to say, "Screw you,Mean Nurse"!!
She has no right LEGALLY OR MEDICALLY to proceed in to begin to draw your bloods, when you had suggested that she use the other arm since you already had many bloods from the arm that Mean nurse was going to draw from.
Mean nurse is not paid to read magazines when she is on the job except if it is a break.
You need a new Health-care Team
As to your A1C's.......7.5 is no big deal!
Yes, it is now recommended that the numbers should be below 7, however keep in mind that you have T1DM. As such, there is going to be fluctuations and many many variables affecting your blood sugars. You do not not have Diabetes, what you have are many Stressors and a lousy Health-care Team that must be replaced!!!!!

Vivian said...

Kathy, I am sending you Super Big Hugs!! I know it is frustrating when it throws you a curve but woo hoo the curve was in a positive direction. I agree with Bettercell, you need a new team. You also need a break and sounds like Scott has just the remedy, how cool that you guys have the opportunity to meet. I hope it works out. I hope you are feeling better, let me know if there is anything I can do.

Bernard said...


Wow, I winced when you described what happened as the BP cuff tightened. What kind of a monster is that nurse?

I think there's a number of us feeling lousy at the moment about our diabetes and how it impacts our lives.

Look at the bright side, I wish my most recent A1C had been like yours. I was ticked off with the unexpectedly high number that I got.

Have a great time if you can get together with Sara and Scott, I'm jealous!

Kevin said...

I hear you loud and clear about not being able to predict your A1c!!!!

So frustrating. I've only had one shockingly low A1c reading when I was in college, and gave the doc the same "this isn't me... there must have been a mix up at the lab" story.

But lately, it's all been the opposite direction.

It's not fair, and even as grown adults we sometimes feel like throwing ourselves on the floor kicking and screaming about it.

Let it go.

Molly said...

Ugh. That sounds like a diabetes appointment from hell. I've quit trying to guess what my A1c will be. Even if I look at my meter averages, I know that's only a small part of the equation.
No wonder people with diabetes (at least the ones that I know) have SERIOUS medical appointment anxiety.
Enjoy your weekend!! :-)

Molly and Dixie

jill. said...

I hear you! My last A1C was lower than I had expected too. You would think I would have been happy, but I was like "great, yet another thing I can't predict about D"

Working hard day-to-day and taking the A1Cs as they come is all you can do I guess..

Oh and holy cow about the blood! Yikes!