Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Interview with a Type Awesome

Please forgive the blurriness, computers have a mind of their own.

Last month my husband was me for one day.  He monitored my blood sugars with both my meter and my CGM.  He counted carbs, he bolused, he treated a low and a high.  He did almost all of it.  I interviewed him last night to get his take on how it went.


Interviewer:  Let's start with some basic questions.  How long has your wife (Yes.. I know that's me, but go with me on this one) had diabetes?

Hubby:  I believe it is around nine years.  I know it was right at her birthday when she was diagnosed.

I:  How does she treat it?  With a pump or MDI? 

Hubby:  She uses a pump.  Freeda is it's/her name.

I:  How long has she had her pump?

Hubby:  Three years twelve days.

I:  Does she use a CGM and if yes how long has she had it? 

Hubby:  She does, and I think she's had him for close to a year and a half.

I:  Has she named that too?

Hubby:  Oh yeah.  This one is named O.D.  Her first one was George and her second was Darryl.  O.D. is short for "Other Darryl".

I:  What made you decide to be her for a day?

Hubby:  I wanted a better understanding of what she deals with every day and thought this would be a good way to get that.

I:  What all did you do?

Hubby:  I filled a cartridge for her pump and changed the infusion site.  I did all the carb calculating and bolusing for meals.  I treated both lows and highs.  Monitored her CGM and took care of alarms.. most of the time.  She let me sleep the first night.  She said she felt guilty waking me.  That list doesn't sound like much, but I will say this, there is a WHOLE LOT MORE to it that what it sounds like.

I:  Did anything surprise you?

Hubby:  Yeah.  The amount of calculating of carbs for blousing.  It was INSANE!  I was also surprised that she actually tested with her meter that often too.  I thought she was just being a hoarder when she pushed her insurance for 10 strips each day.  I was also surprised at how fast a high, or especially a low, can hit.  It's like she was fine one minute and then I turn around and she's right there saying, "I don't feel good". 

I:  What did you learn that you never knew before?

Hubby:  I never understood why she would get so frustrated sometimes when trying to bolus or a when a low hit.  Just how it truly effects her, and subsequently my, entire life.  There is so much to do to prepare to do anything; grocery shopping, hiking, going to church, or anything.  She always just seems to have it all ready so I never realized how much work it truly is.

I:  What did you take away from this experience that will help you to support her?

Hubby:  The realization of just how it is so intertwined and how it affects her every day being.

I:  Would you ever consider doing this again?  Why or Why not?

Hubby:  I would, yes.  Because it would be a holiday for her.  Then again, it may be more work for her to have to babysit me through it.  I just want to do what I can to take some of the load off of her sometimes.  Also, to better understand what is going on so I know better how and when to help.

I:  Would you recommend other 'type awesomes' to do a day for their loved one?

Hubby:  Absolutely!!

I:  Any final comments?

Hubby:  As a kid I watched diabetes kill my dad.  He had ulcers on his feet, amputations, and developed congestive heart failure, so when she was diagnosed, it was horrible.  I thought I would have to go through that again.  As a kid I didn't know what all was going on, but I still had the feeling of helplessness and hopelessness.  It is not that way now.  I don't have those feelings, especially after doing this for a day.  It's a lot of work but I don't feel helpless anymore.

I:  Any final words for your wife?

Hubby:   Too many to put down, I wouldn't know where to start.  I'll just say, "I love you and I'm proud of you.  After doing this for just one day I can honestly say Holy Crap!!  You're a trouper!"


So there you have it, a spouse's adventure in T1D management.  I believe he did a wonderful job and I am totally going to take him up on the offer of doing it again. 

Friday, November 1, 2013


There are a lot of things to think about when dealing with diabetes on a daily basis, even on good days.  Throw a bad day in there, and your brain is even more consumed with diabetes related.. stuff.

As I posted a few days ago, I'm trying to exercise more.  So far so good.  I've only missed one day of Zumba (ok.. two days, but one of those I played Pickleball for two hours instead).  I've managed to walk over 5 miles this week and last week.  These miles are specific miles too, not just my normal everyday steps.

Last Sunday we did quite a bit of yard work.  We planted a new tree, dug out an area of grass that will have pavers instead, and cleaned an area of gravel and put new fabric underneath.  Let me tell you, yard work is better than any type of exercise at finding muscles you forgot you had.  Holy cow!  Ever since then, I've been sore just about everywhere.  I knew that if I just sat and waited to feel better my momentum would be gone, so I still did my daily lunchtime walk and my evening Zumba sessions.  I felt so much better after moving, that I knew I would be back to normal in just a few days....or so I thought.  It will get better.

One of the downsides is overnight blood sugars.  I'm doing better with keeping everything stable.  I'm figuring out which temp basal rates I need to do depending on the circumstances.

The other night, it bit me in the butt.

I tested as I went to bed at 11pm and was 105.  O.D. (my CGM) was showing a sideways arrow, indicating that I was stable.  I had just under a unit of insulin still on board, which was perfect.  I have a tendency to climb right around midnight so that unit wasn't a concern.  Or at least it shouldn't have been.  At about 1:30 I woke up feeling crappy.  I looked at O.D. and all I could see was the bright red LOW.  That means my blood sugars were somewhere under 40.  I stumbled to the kitchen and inhaled a juice pouch and tested right away.  It was 37.  I don't remember everything that I ate.  I know there was an apple, peanut butter, and a glass of milk in there somewhere.  I stood there telling myself, "Don't over treat you will just feel worse in the morning.  Don't over treat. DON'T OVER TREAT!"

I over treated.

I tested again at 2am and was a beautiful 114, so I headed back to bed.  My alarm goes off at 5:45 and I hit snooze.  O.D. then beeps at me that I'm running high, and my husband comments on it.  I quiet the alarm and get up.  I walk out to the kitchen, start the coffee, and test.  That's when I see the carnage on the counter, and the reading to go along with it; 380.  Yuck.  I over treated.

I dosed for breakfast, along with a large correction, and hoped that I would land softly and not continue the glucoaster all day. 

I call this a win.

Diabetes, you may have won that overnight battle, but the war isn't over, and I'm bigger than you.