Independence

Ask yourself…

Are you willing to cede control of your diabetes?

Does a machine that does some things automatically, on your command, empower you, or take power away? How does a machine that makes changes based on its own algorithms and without explicit direction, affect your feelings about burden? trust? confidence?

Would having a parent/spouse/loved-one by your side to help with diabetes management make you feel safer? Or inadequate?

Is the chirp of a CGM alert a welcome aid to diabetes self-care? Or another nagging voice telling you that you’ve screwed up?

If you could have the assistance of a trained alert-animal (such as a dog), would it make you feel special? privileged? different? isolated? disabled? incapable?

If you were offered the assistance of any of the above, free-of-charge and with no obligation, which might you decline – and why?

Does vanity play a role? Might you be a little more lax on safety so that others may think more highly of you? Or so you may think more highly of yourself?

Is being able to do it on your own a good thing or bad? Is a wealth of self-confidence a blessing or a curse?

Go back and look at your answers. Are they reallyย your answers?ย Do you truly believe them? Or have they been tainted and influenced by what peers, educators, family, and others may have led you to believe are “correct”?

There are no “correct” answers, but we need to answer them — to ourselves — honestly. Nobody should be told how to think.

(Please comment with your overall thoughts on reliance on other things/people/animals, but there’s no need to answer each question individually).

Just some food for thought…

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Posted on January 7, 2014, in Diabetes, DOC and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.

  1. Great post. So much to think about.

    I’d take the dog for sure.

    I’m going to think about the rest some more. I just love this post and the questions you pose so much that I wanted to comment immediately. Gushing enthusiasm.

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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    • I’m eagerly anticipating your more elaborate response and am glad you found it so thought-provoking. I’m particularly interested to see how much outside-help would be welcomed by parents of PWDs than by the PWDs themselves.

      Sent from my Lenovo ThinkPad

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  2. I see these things as tools that help me control diabetes and make me feel safer, not something that takes over my control or has a negative impact.

    On a side note, I would like to have a diabetes service dog simply so I could bring my dog to work with me ๐Ÿ˜€

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  3. It depends on the day how I would answer a lot of these questions. There are some days I see the CGM as an annoying reminder of ways I screwed up, at other time it’s a reminder that no matter that I’ve done everything perfectly it’s still not right, and then there are the days that I couldn’t be more thankful for it. I would absolutely sign up for a machine that did things on it’s own to manage the care of my diabetes. Maybe it’s far too trusting of me, but it would be nice to not have to think about calculations and reactions for awhile.
    I think the only service I would decline is the service dog, simply because I’m too great of an animal lover to have it by my side and for it not to actually be a pet ๐Ÿ™‚

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    • Could it not be both? The dog isn’t there to perform ongoing duties as, perhaps, a seeing eye-dog does; it could just be a friendly companion that barks when its Snoopy-sense (canine version of Spidey-sense) indicates something is awry. Am I wrong?

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      • I don’t know a lot about assistance dogs of this nature. I know seeing eye dogs aren’t supposed to be treated as pets though. I always have to stop myself from going to pet one on the occasions I see them (not that often lol). But if it can be both then sign me up!

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  4. I would have no issue strapping on an artificial pancreas and letting it do the “thinking” for me, but that confidence is largely due to my knowing what to do if/when it fails.

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  5. I’m with Katie – if we do eventually get to true, reliable, artificial pancreas technology, I’ll be signing up once all the kinks are worked out from the early adopters ๐Ÿ™‚ I already love my CGM, and can’t live without it.

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    • So do I, but I wear my CGM until it blatantly stops working right. If real decisions were being made because of it, I’d have to change it every 6 (or whatever) days no matter what. Pushing the limits of a sensor’s lifespan would be a hard habit to break.

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  6. When I was pregnant I was seeing my endo bi-weekly and he took over my d-management and it was so nice to not have that burden! I loved it! Sure, I still tested regularly, logged my BGs, counted carbs – but he made all the adjustments to my basal rates and boluses. It was kinda freeing, if only for a short period of time.

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  7. I usually see my pump/glucometer/etc the same way as Katie S. There are, however, occasions where I see them as a nuisance. My mood colors my perception.

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  8. Overall I feel that I’m alone in my self-care so having the tools (as many others have called them) make me feel more comfortable in my ability to keep moving. I haven’t been doing this very long and I accept the all of the help that I can get and have already figured out that my doctors haven’t always been forthcoming with what is available to me. I didn’t hear a peep about CGMs until I read about them from the Twitter DOC folks!

    I’ve never had another person have control over my diabetes (with the exception of my hospitalization at diagnosis). I’m not confident that there are people close to me who could help me if I needed it. Even my husband doesn’t know all of the ins and outs of my care but I trust him with it the most. He and my best friend are the only people in my life who I feel could take over for me if I were ever incapacitated. That’s a scary thought that has me considering giving up some of my “I’ve got this thing” attitude and teaching people like my mom how the basics work.

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