LifeAfterDx--Diabetes Uncensored

A internet journal from one of the first T1 Diabetics to use continuous glucose monitoring. Copyright 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016

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Location: New Mexico, United States

Hi! I’m William “Lee” Dubois (called either Wil or Lee, depending what part of the internet you’re on). I’m a diabetes columnist and the author of four books about diabetes that have collectively won 16 national and international book awards. (Hey, if you can’t brag about yourself on your own blog, where can you??) I have the great good fortune to pen the edgy Dear Abby-style advice column every Saturday at Diabetes Mine; write the Diabetes Simplified column for dLife; and am one of the ShareCare diabetes experts. My work also appears in Diabetic Living and Diabetes Self-Management magazines. In addition to writing, I’ve spent the last half-dozen years running the diabetes education program for a rural non-profit clinic in the mountains of New Mexico. Don’t worry, I’ll get some rest after the cure. LifeAfterDx is my personal home base, where I get to say what and how I feel about diabetes and… you know… life, free from the red pens of editors (all of whom I adore, of course!).

Friday, December 09, 2005

Girl trouble

You'd think that after 42 years on the planet I would have learned the most basic rule of male to female relationships. Don't ignore the girl.

I ignored the girl yesterday, and she didn't take kindly to it, and told me so with a new alarm I had not heard before.

Regular readers will know that the girl, in this case, is my Guardian Monitor. Why this machine became a "she" and then later, "the girl," is a bit of a mystery. Without really thinking about it, as I was writing the blog I started referring to the Guardian as "she." Later on, out in the real world I started calling her "the girl." My wife and I would be out eating and I'd take a finger stick and then say, "let's see what the girl thinks my BG is" and click and we'd check and see.

Now men have been giving the things they make female names since the first cave-men made a raft by lashing some logs together and paddled out across some ice age lake in search of what ever it was our Paleolithic ancestors searched for. But to set the record straight I don’t go around naming every device in sight.

When it comes to machines, for me, most are simply “it.” A few are “he.” And some are the more traditional “she.” It so happens my current car is a girl, and is named Emily. I don’t know why, she just seemed like an Emily. But I’ve never named any of my other numerous cars in my life, they were all just “its.”

We have tons of machines at the lab. All of our film processors have been named by our staff over the years, some had male names, some had female names. Both of our MiniLabs have female names, but none of our print processors have names at all. Go figure. None of our computers have real names, but of course they all have network names...but we don’t call them by name.

My pump has a name, 2-of-5 (you need to watch Star Trek to get it) but it is an "it." Even though it is very high tech and keeps me alive it doesn’t seem to have any personality to me. Maybe because I have always viewed it as an extension of me, part of me, rather than something separate.

Where was I? Oh to set the stage you need to know that today we are painting our living room and kitchen. This is the first major household project in years. I fully expected to being writing the "hypo city" post, telling all of you how I had seven hypo alarms but took sugar and kept boldly painting. It didn't happen that way at all. Not that I'm complaining.

So at 8:54 in the morning I had taken my BG and had my breakfast. Then I painted all day. And snacked. Painted and snacked. Snacked and painted. All day. I just piled the insulin on with abandon. Then Deb went to town for supplies, paint supplies that is, and came back with two pizzas and doughnuts. And chocolate covered cherries.

I'm sure I mentioned to her that I'm a diabetic.

So more painting. More snacking. And pizza. And a doughnut. And what the hell, these are a new kind of chocolate covered cherry (really a chocolate truffle with a cherry in the middle) so 10 more carbs...

So my breakfast bolus was adjusted for my BG. The rest I just stacked on top. They were all so close I figured the IOB and BG would get hopeless anyway. By afternoon I have straight boluses piled on top of combo boluses (for pizza) and God only knows what was really going on. I'd glance at the Guardian every once and a while, expecting trouble, but it held steady around 130 most of the day. Actually, at one point in the evening it rose to 199. My high threshold is set at 200. I'm waiting for the air-raid siren. It didn't happen, the sugar peaked at 199. I ducked the bullet and it dropped quite nicely back to normal levels.

So crazy exercise. Crazy eating. Crazy bolusing. And one of the better BG control days I've had in weeks. Go figure. And then at 8:54 pm she vibrated and gave off a noise I'd never heard before. Not a Martin landing low alarm. Not a air-raid high alarm. More and alarm clock. I check the screen to see what's up. It has been 12 hours since I fed her a finger stick reading.


I actually went 12 friggin hours without taking a finger stick to check my BG.

Can you imagine? The guy with iron finger tips. The guy who has to make three co-pays each month to Blue Cross to cover my thirst for test strips. The guy had developed a near pathological fear of low BG. Painting all day. Up and down ladders. Crawling on the floor. Rolling. Trimming.

12 hours without checking my BG with a finger stick.

I wonder how far off she'll be? I usually feed in a finger stick every 4 or five hours....
Click....145. OK, Cozmo's turn. Open. Insert. Check code number. Stab. Squeeze. Apply. ZIPPPP. Wait. Wait. Wait. Wait. Wait. Wait.....143.

Now that's amazing.


Blogger Keith said...

Wil, over my almost 37 years with D I've found that if I'm constantly active I can eat an incredible amount of carbs and have pretty normal bGs, i.e. when we're camping I can eat biscuits & gravy for breakfast, big sandwich w/chips, etc for lunch and Dutch oven lasagna, w/bread, salad and a s'more for desert and never go above 150 all day long.

However, when I'm home and have 20 extra carbs for breakfast and even though I've bolused for them, sit down in front of my computer for several hours pretty soon I'm into Rage bolus mode (thanks to Kerri for that term) and still without much effect.

Moral to the story -- I try to stay as active as possible even if it's just parking at the far end of the Wal-mart lot for the walk in otherwise I start swingin' like a yo-yo!

Sounds like you and 'the girl' are starting to settle down to a nice life together ... again thanks for sharing. You truly have a great blog!

9:32 PM  
Blogger Sandra Miller said...

Wow... indeed.

Wil, the line--

"I actually went 12 friggin hours without taking a finger stick to check my BG."

nearly brought tears.

I just can't imagine it. Joseph experiences 11-14 bg checks a day (including the overnight).

Amazing that you weren't affected by the insulin stacking, with all those carbs... and pizza... again, wow.

Sounds like you and "the girl" are going to have a beautiful relationship :)

7:36 AM  
Blogger Wil said...

OK, Keith is soooo in charge of the food next time we all go camping! Yum!

Funny how D works, isn't it? You just never know what to expect. I guess I just got lucky that my above normal excercise was balanced out by my above normal eating.

Both you and Sandra are right: me and the girl are going to have a great life!

2:47 PM  

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