Well, it’s that time of year again. The time for shopping for pencils, backpacks, crayons, and glue, as well as the time for school buses, road rage, and traffic. Usually, this time of year has no effect on my day-to-day activities, except for the school buses and road rage. However, this year, I’m going back to school too.
I currently work as a marketing assistant for a commercial real estate firm, but I have always wanted to explore the world of graphic and web design. I do have some experience doing freelance graphic design work, but I have decided to take some courses and learn from the beginning. So, I enrolled in a couple of classes at the local community college; one is an online course, and the other is an in-class course.
I had my first class of the semester on Monday, and it was thrilling and also exhausting. I knew my blood sugar levels would be all out of sorts that day because I was anxious and nervous all day, and the class was four hours long. It also started at 5:30 p.m., which was right after I got off work (no time for dinner).
My next appointment with my endocrinologist is the first week of October, and I have already started preparations. I know this may seem a little silly for some, but when I go to see my endo, I sometimes feel exposed.
For me, diabetes can be a very invasive disease. My overall health depends on how well I have been “behaving” and keeping myself healthy. How much I eat, sleep, workout, and weigh all depend on my health goals, and my endo can see everything, especially when you wear a pump or CGM.
An insulin pump and CGM are a blessing and a curse. I can see my blood sugar patterns, where my highs and lows are, and if my insulin to carb ratio is accurate. I can also see when I get lazy and don’t exercise, if I eat too many carbs at mealtime, and if I give into temptations and eat that dessert. My endo can see all these things as well.
I cannot stress enough how important it is to have a good support network for those of us with T1D. Whether it’s your family, friends, or a T1D support group, it is key to keeping your blood sugar and your health in check, but accepting your new self is half the battle.
T1D is a marathon, and it will always be in your life. With every life decision you make, whether it’s what you should eat for dinner, to go for a run, or even have children, T1D will be there every step of the way. This realization can be a little overwhelming and scary. Having a disease that is incurable can be unfathomable and denial can lead to poor diabetes management.
I will admit, this was the hardest step for me. I was certainly in denial. For a while, I thought surely the doctor made some sort of mistake. I just knew if I ate a little healthier, and if I cut down on the sweets this whole nightmare would just go away right? Nope.
Last weekend Aaron and I went to Schlitterbahn with his family for some fun in the sun. (For those of you who do not know, Schlitterbahn is the best waterpark in Texas.) I was ecstatic. I couldn’t remember the last time I had been, and I couldn’t wait. However, I did have one predicament. Schlitterbahn is a waterpark, and my pump is not waterproof.
With any overnight travel, one with diabetes must be prepared. My overnight diabetes bag includes insulin, glucometer with extra test trips and lancets (things used to prick your finger), extra infusion sets and reservoirs for my pump, glucose tablets, and my Dia-Pak (protective case with ice pack to keep my insulin cool for the road trip). I also almost always put in my CGM when I travel since I will be out of my daily routine, and blood sugar levels can be unpredictable.
I also had my little predicament to think about, and I was not going to let it get me down. Enter the double layered Ziploc baggy with double Ziploc protection.