Snapshots from Indy

I’ve been meaning to chronicle some of my recent travels. Today, I’m getting around to talking about my trip to Indianapolis at the end of October.

I may have been going to Indy for a Public Relations conference, but somehow the trip was significantly colored by diabetes… and not really in a bad way. I went for the PRSA International Conference as well as some of the pre-conference PRSA business.

After dinner with other PRSA chapter leaders on the first night, a lady came up to me and said, “I think you need a green one.”

I turned around to see her holding up an OmniPod PDM with a green skin. She had seen my PDM sitting on my bag and came over to say hi. Not only was the skin on hers green (my favorite color) but it also glowed in the dark, how cool is that?

As it turns out, my fellow podder and I were both diagnosed with diabetes as adults… about 5 years ago. We swapped stories and talked about not just diabetes, but just about everything else. Continue reading

Tech-ed Out

So my diabetes gadgets were Out of Warranty and I had planned to keep it that way as I wait for better technology. Hope draws closer as people are actually being enrolled in the first tubeless artificial pancreas trials (wish one of the clinics were here in Cleveland!). But I’m halfway back under a warranty.

My Dexcom gave the dreaded, “transmitter battery low, reorder soon” message. So I called my medical supply company. After a slightly frustrating conversation where I had to repeat myself four times and spell the word “low” the lady said she’d get the paperwork in for me to get a new Dexcom G4 system. “Since I’m getting a whole new system, let’s put in paperwork for the Dexcom G5 please.” (Because who wants new-old technology?)

She put in the order and I anticipated full transmitter battery death was imminent and prepared to fly blind for a week or so without my CGM. Thankfully, that didn’t happen.

I got the call that I expected from the medical supply company. Continue reading

What I’m Thinking After Five Years with Type 1 Diabetes

Today is my 5th diaversary.

In May, I was invited to be part of an adults with type 1 diabetes panel at a local JDRF event. I wasn’t the youngest person on the panel, but I’d had type 1 the shortest amount of time as I was the only one diagnosed as an adult. I was asked to share about the adjustment to life with type 1 as an adult, so I gave my abbreviated diagnosis story.

I talked about the time five years ago as a recent college grad and new wife. I listed out the symptoms I was experiencing: unquenchable thirst, peeing all the time, tired, blurry vision, weight loss, vomiting… “My husband finally convinced me to go to the doctor,” I told the audience. “And they gave me a pregnancy test.” The audience had a visible physical reaction to that statement. Everyone present knew those symptoms, knew what they meant and expected me to say that when I went to the doctor they diagnosed me with diabetes right away, the pregnancy test was a surprise to them.

As I sit here in the middle of my season of 5th year milestones, I have trouble believing that five whole years have passed. And in the next minute, it’s hard to believe that only five years have passed because it feels like a life time. There’s a lot that I’m thinking about on my 5th diaversary. Continue reading

Tips and Tricks

Today’s the 5th and final day of Diabetes Blog Week, some may continue posting over the weekend for the wildcard topics, but I think I’ll wrap it up today. To be honest, with how infrequently I’ve been blogging lately, I’m surprised I’ve made it this whole week. Kudos to Karen for selecting topics that I could write about! Today’s topic is tips and tricks.

Let’s round out the week by sharing our best diabetes tips and diabetes tricks. From how you organize supplies to how you manage gear on the go/vacation (beach, or skiing, or whatever). From how you keep track of prescription numbers to how you remember to get your orders refilled. How about any “unconventional” diabetes practices, or ways to make diabetes work for YOU (not necessarily how the doctors say to do it!). There’s always something we can learn from each other. (Remember though, please no medical advice or dangerous suggestions.)

I love it when people share really helpful, actionable tips for dealing with diabetes in real life. Two years ago, we “hacked” diabetes and I shared a list of things that I do to make living with diabetes easier.

Medical  Management Tips Continue reading

Creating a Better Healthcare Experience

Today’s Diabetes Blog Week prompt is all about the healthcare experience. Here it is:

Most people who live with a chronic illness end up with a lot of experience when it comes to dealing with healthcare. How would you improve or change your healthcare experience? What would you like to see happening during medical visits with your healthcare team? How about when dealing with your health insurance companies? What’s your Healthcare Wish List or Biggest Frustration? Today is the day to share it all!

I have to acknowledge that I’m in an excellent place when it comes to healthcare. I truly have access to world class medical care living in Cleveland. Overall I have a good team and I can’t relate to all of the horror stories that I hear from others, but my care is not perfect.

There are always areas to improve. In U.S. healthcare, the first area to improve is insurance. Somehow in our twisted system, the insurance companies started determining care, not doctors. Pharmacies will literally fill prescriptions differently than written if the insurance company pushes back. Even doctors will bow to the demands of insurance. Continue reading