Thursday, July 31, 2008

So Pumped!

Goofy picture aside, I'm so pumped about pumping!

Last week at the CWD conference, I had the unexpected pleasure of trying out 2 insulin pumps with saline. The plan was to ask my doc for a script before the conference, but I sank with intimidation during the actual visit. Fortunately for me, there were nice people available at the various pump companies who were writing scripts. SHHHH! Don't tell. Imagine my surprise when the rep said, "do you want to try it?" -Yeah!

In my excitement to try the pod, I almost forgot about the insertion factor. You know, that unexplainable fear of something not just poking me with a large needle, but ACTUALLY REMAINING UNDER MY SKIN. This has long been a road block in my interest for a pump. I was pleasantly relieved when they placed the pod on the back of my arm, and the most painful part was waiting for the pod to strike. No pain. AT ALL. Heck, a finger stick was more painful than that.

The next day I was Pinged by Animas. Again the excitement almost surpassed the fear. We got to do the complete prep of filling the reservoir and rewinding the pump. I was totally fascinated, but as we pulled out the Inset 30 (the one with that really long needle), my fear returned in full force. This was different than the pod. The pod required no real work from me. I just awaited the needle. This one required that I cocked it like a GUN, aimed and shot myself with this device. I prepped it and held it up against my skin, feeling my face begin to redden. The trainer counted down to the count of 3.

3. 2. 1.


I couldn't do it. It's just not normal. I felt as though it was my first self-injection, surreal and invasive. I told the woman that I couldn't do it in the most serious tone. She answered back very up beat, "Sure you can!" WHAP! She nailed me on my back, and out of surprise I pushed down on the buttons. It was in before I even realized I did it. No pain, no discomfort, and no reason for that massive anxiety.

The rest of the day, I was flashing my site in triumph and playing around with every feature on the pump and ping I could figure out. With all the saline boluses, I was being seasoned like a ham. I played with it for a full day, and even had my first occasion to figure out where to put it in a dress. The ping makes that so easy! I hid it on the back of my bra and then bolused with the ping in my purse. No need to mess with the pump at all. VERY COOL!

Between the insertion sites and being attached to something 24/7, I had reservations. Now I'm having pump envy against all of you who wear a pump. The flexibility and control is unmatched by shots and pens. I still don't think I could do the pod pump, because I know I would lose the controller. If it's life saving AND ultra important, it doesn't stand a shot of staying around. The other pumps are now in serious running against each other for my love and affection. Now, if I can just get my doctor on board.

Monday, July 28, 2008

HOLY GUACAMOLE: A Recipe for Friends For Life

This month began with my first diabetes birthday and ended with my first CWD Friends For Life Conference. There could be no better name for such a life changing experience for anyone who is touched by Type 1 diabetes.

Children, parents, grandparents and adults, from more than a dozen countries, affected by this disease, gathered together and welcomed each other with open arms in a way I have never seen before. A family like no other, and I met the most amazing new friends as seen on Manny's blog.

Those friends and family who knew I was planning to attend this conference, never ceased to remind me that I am not a child OR a parent of a child with diabetes. Truth is, I didn't need to be. I shuffled around learning all kinds of lessons in both formal classes and from new friends. I have many stories to tell, but for now I'll leave you with just a few of the things I learned:

1. I'm not the only "young" adult with diabetes in the world... who knew!
2. The word Guacamole or Guac makes an excellent substitute for some other
unsavory words that might pass through my lips around innocent ears (Sorry
kids, if I slipped occasionally)
4. I must fire my dictator, I mean doctor.
5. Some people, like Sara, are really good at board walk games
6. And most importantly, I AM NOT ALONE.

Thank you to all those wonderful angels I met this past week!