Thursday, August 31, 2006

Courtesy of 20 years of diabetes

So I have had some gastrointestinal issues for years. Reflux, some pretty awful shall we say irregularity and related stuff. I have been on antacids, laxatives, powders, pills. Nothing really making things normal, but it has been manageable. In the last 8 months or so I have been having more trouble and I have been super bloated ALL the time. I can't eat normal sized meals unless I am wearing an elastic waist band. I finally went to my GI doctor because I was just so uncomfortable. Turns out it is something fairly common in people who have had diabetes as long as I have. Gastroparesis. Ugh.. It basically means that my GI muscles don't work well and my food sits in my stomach instead of moving down my GI tract. It causes my severe reflux and bloating and makes my irregularity even less..well regular. I know it could be worse. I really do. I am grateful that I have my eye sight, my limbs, etc.. but I find an additional inconvenience courtesy of my diabetes irritating. I mean it's amazing how much one can take digesting and pooping for granted. I guess it's just another reminder that hey, even when you're in control, your diabetes is there, throwing a tiny wrench into the machinery. So armed with some additional tools (meds) I'll take my skills as a diabetes mechanic and make it all work as best as possible. But if my body is reading this, I would totally appreciate a break from this crap (no pun intended).

A side note: The freshmen arrive Sunday and as an orientation leader, I get to introduce them to the world of college. Having done this in June as well, I can definitely say that I will keep my age (now a lovely 24 years) a secret this time. Apparently when you are 17 or 18, 24 is old. I don't remember thinking that way at that age, but hey, I'm so old I may be losing my memory.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

It's been a while...

Wow, I feel like it has been years since I posted anything here. I have been on vacation, working in Wyoming (don't get too excited, it was only for 3 days), and then visiting a camp I worked at 2 summers ago. I have lofty blog re-entry goals, but tonight is not a night to accomplish them. I am tired after a 4 day sickness and have an early morning, but I felt like I needed to make contact, to remind myself that I am still connected to this wonderful, supportive community. So, hello all! I'll be catching up on reading your blogs and catching up on writing my own in the next few days. xo

Oh, some of you know from my previous blogs that I decided to let go of my fear of driving and go fro my license. Well I did, and I am now a licensed driver!!!!!!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

A good site is useless without a properly loaded reservoir

So today I had what I have the urge to deem a "poopy" diabetes day. Very mature I know. Yet is just feels right. I had been very happy with the site I put in on Monday. It just felt great, well didn't feel at all, painless going in and painless from then on. Usually I change my site every two days or so, meaning that even last (Wed) night would have been a reasonable time to change sites. I also have my pump alarm when I get below 40 units on board, that is a little less than a days worth of insulin, and I had reached that point Wed night. But being so happy with my perfectly placed infusion set I decided to go until this afternoon without changing. Well, with a fasting bloodsugar of 106 and a small breakfast I was down to 22 units by 11am. I stopped at Starbucks to take advantage of the wireless internet and realized that my pump was alerting me to the fact that apparently, the reservoir had been removed from the pump. I was sure this was wrong since it looked fine so I just sort of humored the pump by reloading the current reservoir (even though it was time to change anyways) and thought, hmmm everything's great now, no worries. Uh, no Nicole, big worries! Now it's 2pm and I just left an appointment and I am feeling shitty but I am assuming it's the horrible heat here in Boston. So off I go to my next task all the while feeling worse and worse. "Well Nicole, perhaps you should test, you are a person with diabetes and as such, you may be experiencing high or low blood sugar." But no, I was sure all was well and I would wait until I reached my next destination to worry about such issues. Well, now it is nearly 3 and I feel AWFUL!!!!! I mean barf city. (Yeah excuse the apparent body function fixation, I sometimes get stuck in preschool mode). So, hell, I decide I might as well test. HI. Yes, HI, like over 600. Yuck. Pump was not so fine after all. So I am rockin a high BS in the city which has had a heat index of over 100 degrees for over two days now. Blah... So I test once more just to make sure. Yup HI now I've got two of those messing up my frickin meter average. Take insulin by injection and change the pump. Waiting, waiting, thanking God that my brother has a prescription for powerful anti-nausea medicine. Going down, down, down, now I am low. GRRRRRR........

What better prescription for a migraine than heat, high blood sugar, followed up by precipitous low blood sugar. So after a slow rise to a healthy in range blood sugar, I am on the very comfortable couch of a family that I babysit for enjoying their great fresh fruit that I can't enjoy in the dorms while the parents are on a date and the kids are quietly sleeping. So rough day, but decent end. Tomorrow begins a whirlwind of fun and relaxation and work. I don't anticipate much blogging, but I have come to enjoy it and value the time it gives me to reflect and share, so we shall see.

Oh, and wish me luck on my driving test: August 15th the day before I leave to work in Wyoming for a few days and the day before my 24th birthday!!! Gotta remember to check my mirrors and use my turn signals. ;)

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

A new diabetes responsibility

Well, after 8 years of avoidance, I am getting my driver's license. I think it was CBC that made me so nervous, I mean phobic. I was a very silly girl and loved to be hyper and energetic and funny when I was at camp. I remember being 6, 7, 8, 9 etc.. and people always joking about how they would be sure to stay off the road when I got my license. I am sure no one ever really meant it. If they truly knew me they knew there was an old lady sharing a body with my silly little girl self. Someone cautious and nervous and neurotic. I truly took those comments to heart and when my 16th birthday came around, I heard all of those voices in my head and pretty much decided that I would probably kill someone if I drove. And so, here I am 24 years old and just learning to drive. Well, not learning, I know how, but learning to deal with my FEAR around driving. I have gone on the road several times now and haven't killed anyone, or even come close to bumping into something. YAY!!! As a PWD driving involves even more responsibility than it does for the average driver. Being low is waaaaaayyyyy bad, I mean talk about a good way to fulfill the "fears" of all of my camp elders. Being low is a great way to get myself killed or perhaps even worse, kill someone else. Being really high isn't great either. I feel very sick and dizzy when I get too high. So this means it is super important that I learn to find a safe driving bs level. What can make this a little difficult is that I am nervous when am driving and my nervousness feels like low blood sugar. Sooooo, I have decided to keep myself around 180 and when in doubt, pull over with plenty of glucose and nabs handy!!! Every so often life changes, even a little, and there's diabetes just to remind you that some things never change. And, hell, at this point, that's just fine with me.