Sick Days for My Type 1 Diabetes

This week I’ve been sick.

You know how sometimes people complain about what babies men are about getting sick?  Well, I’m very masculine when it comes to the way I handle illness.

I do not suck it up.  I do not go on about my day as usual and try to fight my way through it.  I don’t keep it to myself that I don’t feel well.

I’m sure it’s super annoying for my husband.  But the good news is, I rarely get sick.  I seriously have thought before that I seem to have such a strong immune system, and so rarely get sick, that maybe this all ties in to how I got this auto-immune disease called Type 1 Diabetes in the first place.  At a certain point, my immune system just got bored, went a little nuts, th-4and attacked my cells that produce insulin. And then, BAM!  I became a Type 1 Diabetic.  Ok, there is no science behind that idea, but it’s the way I think about my T1.  I got it because of my overly strong immune system.  Yeah!

Anyway…

This week I had a scratchy throat on Tuesday.  So besides walking dogs for a couple of hours, I did very little else. My blood sugars started going up and up and up.  My body didn’t seem to realize I was giving myself insulin.  I had to take about 3 times more than I usually do.  And even with that, it never got down where I wanted it to be. But oh well.  It’s one day. In a long life.

On Wednesday, my eyeballs ached.  My head hurt.  Actually, my whole face hurt.  I decided it was a sinus “thing”.  My husband took me to La Madeline for the Tomato Basil soup because when I’m sick, that’s a requirement.  I took not one, but two baths that day and was in my pajamas by about 5pm.  I read a bunch of a book I had started the day before that I’m just in love with.

I stayed in bed almost the entire day Thursday.  I got up in the morning and felt dizzy in the shower.  So I got right back in bed.  With wet hair.  And made a discovery that my hair looked pretty cool by drying against a pillow.  It made my waves a little more pronounced than usual!

Today, I’m coughing and my nose it stuffy, but my face doesn’t hurt.  And I’m not dizzy when I stand up. And my blood sugars are back to normal.  I’m so much better.

So although I don’t like being sick, it doesn’t suck completely.  I don’t fight it.  And I don’t try to act tough.  And I don’t berate myself for having crappy blood sugar control for a couple of days.  Because it’s a long life!

World Diabetes Day

The month of November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and today is World Diabetes Day.

Having lived with Type 1 Diabetes as my constant companion for 20+ years, I count my lucky stars that I have no complications from the disease. I know that is not the case for many people who have had it as long as I have.

So let me give a shout out to some of those lucky stars of mine now, and hope that in focusing on the positives, they will continue to multiply- not just for me, but for anyone and everyone affected by diabetes.

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Star #1: I have pretty good insurance.  This year, I went for the “high deductible plan”, which felt a little scary, but worked out okay.  I am so lucky to have access not only insulin which keeps me alive, but things that make diabetes easier to manage… In particular, my Dexcom CGM.  Thank GOD my insurance helps me on that. I wish everyone could be so lucky.  I do not take it for granted.

Star #2: As mentioned above, I am so grateful for my Dexcom.  It’s been a life changer for me and Dexcom really should seriously consider hiring me to be a spokesperson for what a great product it is, and how much I love the company.  I can’t help but mention, on a daily basis, what a huge fan I am.

Star #3: I have a lifestyle that makes living with diabetes easier.  I love to be active, I (usually) make smart choices about what I eat, and I do a lot of things that keep my stress level low.

Star #4: I have friends that also have T1.  I am so lucky to not only know others with diabetes, but to call them my friends.  If I need to complain, or if something weird is happening regarding my diabetes, they are the people I talk to first…not my doctors.  Other Type 1s, who live with it 24/7/365, just get it like no one else can.

Star #5: Because I’ve known my husband since high school, he knew me  before diabetes, during my diagnosis, and now, many years later.  When it was scary for me, he was calm.  And now, we don’t see it as a big deal or crisis, but it’s something we both have to deal with.  There have been plenty of times, me and my diabetes have cramped our style just a little, for just a brief moment or two (ha!) but he’s been patient with me, always.

Star #6: NO COMPLICATIONS.  So far, so good.  Thank God.  Really.  Thank you, God.

I know there are more stars out there, and I’ve only counted a few of them.  But I really do feel lucky.  And grateful.

I have seen so many good things come along since my diagnosis, and I know there are even bigger and better things in the near future for Type 1 Diabetes. Whether or not there is an actual cure someday, I know the smarties of the world out there are working hard to make it easier for us.  I celebrate those people today. Happy World Diabetes. ❤️

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Coke Saves Lives (When You’re a Type 1 Diabetic)

It’s not often that I drink a real Coke. It’s also not often that I accidentally take way too much insulin.  But the two seem to go together well.

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the two look nothing alike really. and i keep them in different places. but still… mistakes happen.

Last night, okay- I’ll admit it-, after a glass or two of wine, I dialed up my insulin pen to take my long acting shot of Tresiba for the night.  Except that the second after I injected it, I realized, “Oh crap! This is NOT the Tresiba pen.  This is my Humalog pen!” And then I immediately started searching around for any sugar I had with me so I could counteract what that insulin would soon be doing to my blood sugar.  I had some Mentos (my favorite th-2go-to sugar when I’m having a low blood sugar situation), but most likely not enough to make it through this pickle I had just gotten myself into. I asked my husband to run to the store and get me candy.

It was a little late, and we are on vacation, in the mountains, so he just went to this little market very close to us to see what they had.  Thankfully, they were open, because lots of places around here were already closed for the night.  They didn’t have any candy.  But they did have a 2 liter bottle of Coke.

A Coke. And a smile.

To be honest, I’m so glad it was Coke rather than Mentos this time.  It’s one thing to eat 3 or 4 Mentos when I’m a little low.  But to have to eat gobs of them over the next several hours would have really made me sick I think.  Getting the Coke down wasn’t so bad though. In the beginning, it was actually sort of glorious!

Fortunately, we had a pretty light dinner, so I wasn’t having to drink Coke on a full stomach.  I kept my glucometer near by, as well as my Dexcom. About 30 minutes after my accidental insulin shot, I saw that my blood sugar was starting to tank, so I started drinking the Coke.  This was a medical need!!  And at least, in the beginning, I was sort of in heaven. I even ate a few chips to really get the party going.

I continued to drink a very small glass of Coke about every 15 minutes.  My blood sugar stayed around the 70s-80s range, but it never got below 65 mg/dL.  I was trying to avoid severe highs and lows- those rollercoasters all of us diabetics know all too well- and I actually did!  I knew my Humalog would peak around 1.5-2 hours, and would clear out of my system within 4-5 hours.  We all (that’s me, Fermin, Lucy and Ricky) stayed up until 2am, to make sure I went to bed when my blood sugars had leveled out.

As always, I slept with my Dexcom by my bedside. And I was able to sleep through the night without any high or low alarms going off.  YAY!

Coke. Sometimes, it’s what’s good for you.

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The Small World of Type 1 Diabetes

Typically, when I get an unknown call on my cell phone, especially if it’s from out-of-state, I don’t pick it up.  But today, since I’m out of town, and have put out calls to some realtors that I desperately want a call back from, I picked up one of those “random” calls. And I guess, as they say, nothing is random or coincidental at all.

It was a person from GoDaddy just calling to make sure I was happy with the service they provide for this blog.  (I am.) As it turns out, the guy who called me, Jason, told me he is a T1 also!  He’s within a year of my age, and he also has had diabetes since his early 20s.

After he told me that, and I realized we had all that in common, I asked him if he also uses Dexcom’s CGM.  He doesn’t.  But he said he had been reading about it and thinking about it.  Anyone who has visited this blog before probably can tell, without diving in too deep- I’m a big fan of Dexcom and know that I have tighter control now than ever thanks in large part to the information it provides.

I let Jason know that, yep- so far so good with the GoDaddy hosting stuff… but way, way more importantly, I loved having an unexpected connection today with a fellow Type 1 person.

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