Monday, July 28, 2008

Omnipodding Week 3

Is this week three? The beginning of week 3, in any case.

Things have largely settled down and evened out. I'm still trying to figure out the boluses for meals. I used to calculate these entirely differently; the onboard calculator they have seems to usually work so long as you have an accurate carb count. I'm used to dosing certain ways for center food items, and all those previous calcs are kinda fucked.

How can I explain?

Let's say I test before a meal and my blood sugar is 134. According to my little chart, I would take 4 units of insulin to "correct" for that 134 [to get it back to 80] *plus* 1 unit for every 15 carbs I was eating (this 4 unit "base" changes depending on that number. If I test at 80, my base is 2. If I test at 160, it's 6, and on up the scale, up to a 14 unit "base" when your sugar hits 400 and you should prob'ly be phoning a doc).

So if I'm eating, say, eggs and veggies, I'll just take the 4 units of insulin. Afterall, there's no "hard carbs" in those. No bread, sugary items, nothing with more than 15 units of carbs, really.

But if I'm eating eggs and veggies and toast, I'll take 5 units (the base 4 plus 1 for the toast).

Well, the pod doesn't calculate carbs the way I used to. Maybe I've set this up incorrectly. I'm meeting with the local nurse educator tomorrow for a check up about how I'm doing. Thing is, the morning calculator works fine. I know that if I dial in 17 carbs for my berries, then whatever the PDM says to give me is good.

Lunch is trickier, because I don't have an accurate count. I know about what I *used* to take, but every time I try to guess and then plug in the carb amount and test 2-3 hours later to see how I did, I'm always off by 2-3 units. I don't think this is a basal problem. Maybe?

My best numbers of the day (which, strangely enough, used to be my worst) are now my morning numbers. I've consistently woken up with 78-112 all last week. On days I don't exercise, my noon number is usually 100ish as well (I'm trying to figure out how to account for the new exercise routine at work. Because we do intervals, my blood sugar invariably goes up, not down (like it would during cardio), so I'm trying to figure out the best basal rate for the hour; I'm getting closer [I'll test at 134-164 after exercising], but it's not ideal yet).

I've been doing a lot of mid-afternoon tests because of aforementioned inability to get my lunch carb ratio correct. Or whatever is messed up. I even altered the basal for the afternoon so it's a little higher (and then it comes down again around 5pm when I'm less insulin resistant). The mid-afternoon numbers all suck (187, today, three hours after I ate, was the best mid-afternoon I've had).

Thing is, I figure that with a pump you should be more stable more of the time. If you're not, what's the point? So, shouldn't my mid-afternoon number be better than it used to be? 187 is what I'd test at during mid-afternoon *before* the pump.

So I'm working hard at fine tuning it.

I've turned off all the annoying beeps, and the only alarm I get is the one I set for two hours before the pod should expire and the one built into the pod for when the pod actually expires. It does still click when it delivers insulin, which is annoying, but something you just have to live with, apparently.

I'm still not sure if I'm sold on it, but I'm happy and sane and the numbers seem to be leveling out. Now it's just a matter of refining it, which I'll be doing with the educator and my endo next month.

Being diabetic is fun!

I was eating this brown rice and vegetable medley thing tonight that I used to eat all the time in Alaska (it's really good, actually; it has bacon and parmesan cheese and tomatoes and all sorts of great stuff), and thinking, "Man, remember in Alaska when you could eat as much of this as you wanted without really thinking about it?"

Remember when I could eat really, anything I wanted at any time, in whatever amount that caught my fancy, without thinking about it?

It's become such a foreign idea, eating without thinking. At least I don't have to take a shot *after* I think about it now, tho? Just plug some numbers into a PDA-looking thing and click for awhile?

Could be worse. Far worse. Big needles and death worse, but there are time when I think I minimize how much this stuff really eats up you life, your thinking. How much it consumes your day. Little stuff adds up.

People who whine annoy the crap out of me. Hell, I'm alive! It's fucking great! I could be injecting pig insulin into my thigh with a giant needle I had to sharpen myself!

But there's a lot that goes into it. Living, yeah, staying living (and sane living) takes a great deal of effort, and math, and forethought these days. I minimize it as much as I can. It's nearly invisible (which is probably why it's so fucking agonizing to me when it *isn't* as invisible). Because, you know, when we choose places to go out to eat at work, when we have a work gaming day, when Steph and the Old Man invite me over for dinner... it's something that not only I'm aware of, but stuff that other people become aware of, too. I have to have diet pop. I can't be living on Doritoes and Mountain Dew like the guys (I couldn't do that anyway without being 300 lbs, but I can't even do it just for a Saturday, you know?).

And running around, exercise without planning and forethought (impulsive sex can also be a lot less fun), and then there's that 1am sugar check, which I do still have to do with the pod. Every am. At least I don't have to take a shot at 5:30 am, tho?

Three steps forward, two steps back.

It's a lot of work, yeah, but it's my life. It's the price I pay to live. Not a bad price at all, but it eats at you sometimes. I can't pretend it doesn't. Especially when I want to eat bagels and order pizza. I hate that more than 2-3 pieces of pizza makes me sick. Hate it. I hate being broken.

It's not the end of the world, just a different world. And sometimes it can piss you off.

But it can't keep you from doing anything.

And that's the part you have to remember.

1 comments so far. Got something to say?

Di Francis said...

I hate being broken, too. Different from you, just as inevitable and irritating. But as you say, isn't it nice to be alive and have some medical technology that can keep us going until a miracle occurs and there's a cure or a really good treatment that means we don't have to think about it every moment.

I'm glad you're blogging. I don't like it when you're silent.