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!).

Sunday, March 25, 2012

A day at the office.

This must be what it’s like to be a stock broker or a commodities trader. Real-time info under your nose with no effort, all the time. Graphs. Numbers. A flood of information to help you make good trades at the right moment.

Yep. Today Sentry is working with me in the library, where I do my writing. And why not? There’s no reason for him to stay on the nightstand all day long doing nothing. As long as he’s within six feet of the Revel pump, no Outpost is required. And while not quite as portable as, say, an iPad, the Sentry really isn’t that hard to relocate. The official protocol is:

Step 1: un-plug the mySentry™ monitor from the wall.
Step 2: carry the mySentry™ monitor to its new location.
Step 3: plug the mySentry™ monitor into another wall outlet.

OK, I made that all up. It’s not really in the manual. But that’s all there is to it. No new setup. No new hassle. When you re-plug into the wall you get the Med-T teeter-totter logo, the startup jingle, and the Sentry finds the pump all by itself—and in no time your data is steaming in real-time.

Actually, over the last few days, the monitor has been showing up in all kinds of unlikely places in our house. Not only in my office, but also on the kitchen countertop while Rio and I played Lego Minotaur at the dining room table, and on the coffee table in the living room while we all watched Chitty Chitty Bang Bang as a family. (Did you know the original book was written by Ian Fleming of James Bond fame?)

But Sentry is most useful to me sitting on my desk, more or less under my nose. He makes it easy-peasy for me to multitask my fucking diabetes. Could I do it by leaving the pump on my desk? Maybe. But it would be a hassle, and the screen is painfully small. I probably wouldn’t pay any attention to it. And every time I stood up to refill my coffee, answer a cell phone call, pee, or whatever, I’d forget it was on the desk and the stupid pump would likely bang on the floor as I stood up. And what about the ol’ Dex? It’s a cordless standalone unit. Couldn’t it have worked as a commodities trader monitor? Nah, a Dex turns its fool self off after a few seconds, so it’s worthless on the desk. I’d have to stop writing to press a button to get any info. And then I’d have the opposite issue from the pump. When I left my desk to refill coffee, answer a cell phone call, pee, or whatever, I’d leave it behind, and if I got distracted and didn’t get back for a while, I’d be without my CGM alarms.


One of the things I love about having the Sentry on my desk is that it tells me when to eat. Yes, I frequently get so engaged in what I’m doing I lose track of time and meals. With my Dex gear, I’d get an alarm when I just went low. Ah, yes. I should have eaten half an hour ago. Shit. But now, with one eye on the Sentry I can clearly see my BGL starting to drift low, giving me plenty of warning that I need to wander out to the kitchen for sustenance.


In fact, I’ll be “write” back, I must go eat now. I’m at 108 mg/dl with a mild sloping drop. No predicted low yet, but I’m being proactive today.


OK, I’m back.

Once upon a time, years ago, I was interviewing a young lady for the position of my assistant. Towards the end of the interview, I cautioned her that the job description had a few unusual features.

She raised one eye brow skeptically, but remained calmly silent, her hands in her lap.

I explained that being a highly focused workaholic, I frequently forgot to do the most basic of things. Like stop and eat. Thus the unusual item on the job description: You have to remind me to eat.

She laughed, “Oh that I can do!”

Of course, I’m poorer now, so I can’t afford an assistant anymore. But the Sentry has filled my assistant’s role in this one fashion.

Hmmm… myAssistant may end up being the mySentry monitor’s name here at LifeAfterDx.

Next time: Dex vs. Med-T, how do they stack up against each other?


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