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#DBlogWeek ’13 – Day 1 – Sharing is caring

It’s Diabetes Blog Week again! For the next seven days, I’ll be unoriginal participating in the Fourth Annual Diabetes Blog Week (my second; you can find last year’s posts here) and writing about a variety of topics that I otherwise wouldn’t have approached.  Lots of other diabetes bloggers will be too, and you can learn all about it on this post at Bitter-Sweet Diabetes.

Today’s Prompt: Often our health care team only sees us for about 15 minutes several times a year, and they might not have a sense of what our lives are really like. Today, let’s pretend our medical team is reading our blogs. What do you wish they could see about your and/or your loved one’s daily life with diabetes? On the other hand, what do you hope they don’t see?

(Lets just disregard that earlier post about doctors being part of our team, shall we?)

Well, my doctor really seems to be quite informed and aware when it comes to diabetes. I don’t feel the need for him to better understand or sympathize what my life is like, nor do I feel like I need to hide anything from him. I’m generally an easygoing person and I accept whatever life throws at me, and I keep my emotions – for the most part – private.

So let me start with the second part first. What don’t I want him to see? Well – the rest of my family. It’s not that I’m ashamed of them or anything — in fact it’s just the opposite. I’m proud of them and love to brag about them. But I don’t want them to have a reason to see my endocrinologist. I don’t want to, ever again, be in such a position where a doctor and a loved one need to jointly figure out what to do with me. And I certainly don’t want them to be in a position where an endocrinologist needs to care for them! (but if they are, Dr. M gets my recommendation).

My doctor is well educated, both in theory and in practice. It was in his office where I learned about the three-day lifespan of a Medtronic sensor and the “loophole” that some people apparently use to circumvent it. He encouraged me to try a Super Bolus, whereas most other endocrinologists probably never heard of such a thing. He also told me a bit about the methods and findings in the LGS (Low Glucose Suspend) clinical trials.

The guy is connected.

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Twelve Angry Hemoglobins

I just came back from my appointment with my endo.  I didn’t go in with particularly high expectations, but I still came out feeling kind of low (and I don’t mean my blood sugar).

It all started in a typical exam room when a friendly physician’s assistant came in to check my height, weight, blood pressure, blood sugar, and all that fun stuff.  Then she leafed through that blue folder with my first and last name on it making sure everything is in order.  Height, weight, BP, BG, pulse properly recorded: check. Eye doctor report: check.  A1C results —

That was in there too.

Then she closed the folder and carried it out of the room.

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Like a child, learning his A-1-C’s.

When I was a kid, I used to get postcards like this in the mail every three months, roughly a week after my visit with the pediatric endocrinologist. Although I don’t remember it exactly (the above is a re-creation; my mother might have an original stashed in her basement somewhere), a few things I remember really well.

First, it was pink (not that it matters, but it did make it stand out among the pile of junk mail). Second, it was a postcard, which meant everyone from my mom to the mailman could read it (this is long before HIPAA). Third, that final blank always had the words “too high” penned in.

Tomorrow I get the results of my latest A1C test. I’ll get it face-to-face, not in a postcard, but I’m sure the words “too high” will still be applicable.

And, for some reason, I’ll try really hard to keep my blood sugars under control for the 24 hours before I go to see the doctor. It won’t make a difference; he’ll download two weeks of data from my pump anyway (and the blood for the A1C, which doesn’t gravitate towards the most recent day, was taken a week ago anyway), but it’s one of those dumb rituals I have. Like brushing and flossing my teeth really well before going to the dentist, to make him think that I am this great all the time.

It’s a senseless habit, but I always want to go in to see my doctor on good terms.  But since it’s a reason to do well, even if only for one day, it’s a habit I choose not to try to break.