Friday, May 13, 2011

D Blog Week/Post 5

I am stepping outside the box today, by putting up a vlog of myself. Once I got started I discovered I had so much to say I had to make two videos. SO glad to see that blogger is back up. Maybe we overloaded it. LOL

Thursday, May 12, 2011

D Blog Week/Post 4

I can't believe it's already day 4.

Ten Things I Hate About Diabetes

1. That it stole my dreams from me. I was a junior in college when diagnosed and intended to apply for medical school. The fear of the future made me cancel those plans and instead I ended up teaching biology at a school in southern Minnesota. I got tired of unruly students flinging the dissection frogs at each other and in 1978 moved to Minneapolis and took a job in the investment industry.

2. The cost. I have a living room couch that sags in the middle and have never taken a real vacation.

3. The endless waiting. Waiting at the clinic in the checkin line; in the reception area for my name to be called; in the exam room for the doc to come in; for lab reports to come in the mail; on the phone with insurance companies.

4. The fear the crosses my mind when my nephews ask for a refill on their pop.

5. The enormous amount of stuff I have to carry around every day.

7. The shame I feel when my A1C is over 7.

8. The fear that since I have a very serious complication, kidney failure, that there are more horrible things just around the corner.

9. Dialysis.

10. The fear that no one will remember me when I'm gone.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Diabetes Blog Week/Post 3

One of my most remembered bloopers was when I was waiting in line at the grocery store after work. Suddenly I felt myself going hypo and immediately reached inside the soda cooler that's strategically placed near the checkout, took out a 20 oz bottle of coke, gulped down half of it, put the cap back on and set it back in the cooler. Must have thought I was home at the fridge.
The next day I recalled what I had done and went back and the bottle was still sitting in the cooler, so I took it out and paid for it.

The second really isn't a blooper, but funny nonetheless. 9 years ago I had surgery for a detached retina. In order to hold it against the back of the eye while it healed, a nitrous oxide bubble was place in the eye. This bubble would gradually decrease in size over the next weeks. I had to wear a neon pink plastic wristband that acknowledged the presence of the bubble because there were certain situtions and medications that could cause it to burst. One day I was waiting at the busstop and a young man pointed to the bracelet and said, "drugs or alcohol?" Apparently residents in treatment programs are given such a bracelet when they have a day pass to leave the facility. I looked him straight in the eye and said, "heroin", He replied, "I thought so. I can spot you guys a mile away."

Monday, May 09, 2011

D Blog Week/Post 2

Dear Dr. Steve,

You have been my primary care provider for over 12 years.

During that time, I was consumed by anger and fear. Just sitting in the exam room made me defensive and outraged. I felt as if you had no clue about living with diabetes.

There were many episodes of sobbing and wailing. Once I even told you to perform a biologically impossible feat and stomped out, slamming the door.

Yet you continued to treat me with respect and compassion. It was nothing short of a miracle that you were on your semi-annual week of hospital duty last August when I was admitted. You told the oncologist that you wanted to be the one who told me I probably had cancer. You asked the surgeon to page you so you could be there when I got out of the o.r. I remember you talling me that the surgery went very well and showing me how to use the patient controlled analgesia and give myself a bolus of morphine.

When I had my first office visit after getting out of rehab, your eyes lit up and said "Kathy, you look simply terrific".

At my last appointment, you were very impressed with the fancy graphs that I printed out with my new OneTouch software.

Steve, I haven't a clue what I did to have a long-term relationship with such a special physician.

My gratitude to you always,


Sunday, May 08, 2011

D Blog Week/Post 1

I used to be one of those people who thought that Type 1 and Type 2 were on opposite ends of the rope. Gee, what did someone who just had to pop a pill know about putting a needle in your belly?
I used to think that some of the pumpers were arrogant and looked down on those of us who take injections.
I used to think that people who were complication free wanted to "circle the wagons" and have nothing to do with those of us who were living with retinopathy, neuropathy and kidney disease.
But.....that's all changed. Yup, I guess it took nearly dying to bring me to my senses. I came home to such a rich outpouring of love and concern from across the web that still brings a tear to my eye. There no longer were any walls dividing us, but an unbounded community of people who were fighting for a greater cause. And it feels wonderful.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

A Very Big Deal

Ever since I got out of rehab, my goal has been to walk 10000 steps a day. 10000 was an arbitrary number set by a clinic system who gave free pedometers to their patients. However, I seemed to get stuck at 8000.

Last Thursday I decided to walk partway home from the hospital where I go for carpal tunnel therapy. I was disrupted by a nasty low so took the bus the rest of the way. When I opened the pedometer, this is what it said:

I was dancing around the kitchen in delight.

The next day at dialysis I told the tech that I had to start taking the bus - that I took cabs because it was such a tough winter. She said, "oh, dialysis patients don't have enough energy to take the bus". Pfft.

Fortunately my kidney doc stopped by an hour later and I told him what she said. He replied, "well, I've got only one thing to say - YOU GO GIRL!"

Today I did a lot of window shopping and sitting on park benchs and came home to this:

Then I decided to walk up to the grocery store. While in the checkout line, I looked at it again and this tan, lean woman wearing running shorts and a sports bra said sneeringly "oh, how far did you go?" I proudly said I'd done over 11000 steps. She then asked how long it took and I replied that it was a total throughout the day. She said "don't you know that it doesn't count if you don't do it all at once?" No. I did not. Sigh.

I wish I had the emails of the two docs who said I'd never get out of a wheelchair.

Build on the victories....