Saturday, July 29, 2006

No Coincidence Here!

I've been in the process of becoming a certified product trainer for Minimed, but one thing that was holding up the Continuous Glucose Monitor System (CGMS) certification was lack of an extra pump for me to use. Well, a pretty neat turn of events have helped that along. Thursday night I had to change my pump site, but for some reason the pump was not acknowledging that there was a full reservoir there. It just kept pushing the plunger along, instead of showing the amount of insulin that had been primed and letting me stop it! Luckily, I didn't let it waste too much insulin, before calling the 1 800 number. I was told I'd have to leave my pump off and use shots to manage my diabetes until a replacement pump arrived the next day. I had been using a 512, and they didn't have any 512's available to send me, so I mentioned that I was going to be a product trainer, and asked if I could get a 522(the newest one that communicates with the sensor). The customer service rep said he didn't have one available, that I'd be getting a 515. I thought, well, ok, I need to learn the differences between the 512 and the 515 anyway, and it's a "free" upgrade, so that works too. I managed to avoid having more than trace ketones by the am, and my BG's weren't too bad either. The pump had to be delivered to work, since I needed to sign for it, and it came by 1000. I tore open the box, and found a brand new 522 ready for me to use! I sat down and programed all my info it, and played with it for a bit. Now I just have to wait for the Diabetes Nurse Specialist who is training me to get back to me about when a sensor is available for me to train on. Jim and I are going on a tour of Italy in 40 days, so the pump malfunction really was prefect timing for more than one reason. (I know Medtronic has an office in Italy, but we're changing cities every couple of days so it'd be tricky to plan a delivery.) And for those of you who aren't familiar with insulin pumps, the malfunctions are few and far between. I've been on a pump for 7 years, and this is only the second time I've had to send a pump back for a new one. Which, considering that it's worn 365 days a year and gets bumped into, dropped, etc occasionally, is pretty good. So I don't consider this malfunction that led to me getting a 522 a coincidence-like a coworker said, I couldn't have planned it.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Why we walk for a cure

Yesterday I was sent as my work's representative for the Team Kick off luncheon for the local Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation(JDRF) chapter's walk in September. The last JDRF meeting I'd been at was a tad dry, so I was in for a surprise. The main support group for kids with diabetes in this area, "The Sugar Free Gang", was there and 8 of them played a part in talking about why we walk for a cure. First though, was the mom whose daughter has had diabetes for several years (since she was 5). Her mom told this story to illustrate what motivated her to be the Family Team chairperson. "The day before my daughter's 6th birthday, I found her sitting quietly on the front porch, not playing with the other kids. I asked her what she was doing and she said she was thinking about what she'd wish when she blew her candles out the next day. When I asked her what she'd decided to wish, she said, 'That I was 4 again, because I didn't have diabetes when I was 4.' (at this point there were several people moved to tears, myself included). "My daughter, at 6, had the wisdom to know that things had changed forever because she had diabetes, and that until there is a cure she is going to have to deal with this disease." I know that there were many people in that audience wishing the same thing for that little girl-that she didn't have to deal with the burden Scott mentioned in his journal of the daily grind of it all.
And then, because the theme for the walk this year is The Wizard of Oz, 4 of the Sugar Free Gang kids were dressed up as Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Lion, and the Tin Man. And one at at time they led up to the stage older kids, ages 12-19 who each shared their stories of why diabetes requires a heart, a brain, courage, and a home. The themes that ran through each of them were of kids who had to grow up too fast- be brave and strong even though there were times when they just wanted to cry about it all. Learning to do what it takes to live a healthy life, hoping to avoid complications. Knowing that the consequences of not doing what they need to do could cause problems years beyond when their young minds can comprehend. Who wants to think about the possibilities of complications creeping up on you in 20 years when you haven't even been alive 20 years? I know I didn't want to when I was a teen. But it was there, that nagging knowledge in the back of my mind everytime I made a decision about food, insulin, exercise, etc. There were times when I wondered if it would be better, easier, to deal with diabetes if I didn't know everything I had been taught about the possible problems it could cause. And everytime I decided that it was better I knew, so I could work towards prevention. I give the kids who spoke a lot of credit for sharing their experiences and showing the corporate teams the faces of diabetes-the young women starting college, the little girls dreaming about what they want to be when they grow up. So, while I'll be in a plane flying back from Italy the day of the walk, those stories will be in my mind as reminders of why I am working on my certification to be a diabetes educator- to empower those living with diabetes until we find a cure to live healthy lives. If you want to walk in your local walk, or find a team to sponsor, you can go to the JDRF's website.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Interestingly accurate.....

I don't usually like the results when I do one of these online quizzes, but this acutally does describe me pretty well.

You Were a Fox

A good observer, you often watch others while remaining unseen.
Cunning and courageous, you also have a gentle side.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

"Anniversary Meme"

When I read through Kassie's meme of things she has done/accomplished/experienced since her diagnosis of diabetes, I thought it was a neat way to celebrate a life that happens to have diabetes as a part of it. And, since my 7 year anniversary of going on the pump is coming as of July 20th it's also appropriate.
So, here's my list for the 25 years I've had diabetes (in no particular order):
1. Discovered the joys of reading by the time my sister was born.
2. Won 2nd place for a poem about apples in the third grade.
3. Went away to Clara Barton Camp for two weeks every summer from ages 10-15.
4. Became a part of the Bartonian Circle in 1994.
5. Graduated from high school in 1998.
6. Graduated from nursing school in 2001.
7. Passed the Registered Nurse Boards in 75 questions on the first try in July 2001.
8. Had 3 of my over 70 poems published, including "Storm of Tears"
9. Moved into my own apartment.
10. Loved and been loved.
11. Landed my dream job working as a diabetes educator.
12. Was a mime clown with my youth group and toured the South for 11 days.
13. Learned that the more fiercely angered or deeply hurt you are by someone, is directly related to how deep your love is for them.
14. Was Stanley's "Angel" for a couple years when "all" I did was simply call him a few times a week to see how he was doing since he was a shut-in.
15. Went away to college.
16. Learned how to drive.
17. Went on a five day road trip sharing a car with three other people to North Carolina for our good friend's wedding.
18. Overcame shyness and some stagefright to sing at church as one of now five people who lead worship at our contemporary service (The Spirit Cafe).
19. Walked in my town's Independence Day Parade to promote the Spirit Cafe.
20. Have gone as far west as Minnesota.
21. Dated my smart, sweet, supportive boyfriend for exactly one year.
22. Milked a cow.
23. Driven through or visited 18 our of our 50 states.
24. Became a member of Sigma Theta Tau International Honors Society for Nurses.
25. Presented for Nursing Grand Rounds at my last job to educate staff about the importance of controlling diabetes during hospital stays.