Monday, October 20, 2008

The learning never ends

Have you ever had one of those months?

You know the ones...the months where you think you have some free time and all of a sudden something totally off the wall comes in and fills that space?

I've had one of those months.

The day before I went on my trip to Nebraska I went to the doctor. I haven't been to a doctor in years (insert many types of lectures here) so I met Dr. for the first time that day. He and I had a really nice chat. He told me to lose weight and then asked me to please give blood. Lots of it. He also scheduled me for a mammogram. Which I blogged about already and it went real well.

OK - so I get back from my roadtrip with my mother and sister and baby Stella and there is a post-it on the fridge.

Call the Dr ASAP


Next day. I call. I ask for the lab results and am told that I must see the doctor in person...can I come in today. (Is it really that urgent?)

The Dr. walks in and he says "you have out of control diabetes and we're going to get you started on insulin today."



Seriously, it was just like that.

Then he pops out of the room and comes back with a large handle bag -- large like the Large Big Brown Bag from Bloomingdales - yea that size.

Although mine was one advertising VIAGRA! of all things.

I was given a lot of booklets, two glucose meters (one for home and one for my purse,) and these very interesting insulin pens. He explained how to give myself an injection and then said OK, do it.

So I did it.

Then he gave me a ton of verbal instructions and sent me home. See you in a week he said.

I asked him what I was supposed to do about my diet and he said that he knew I would be looking it all up on the internet anyway, so I could just research it there. What he gave me was the basic food pyramid and a diet of 1800 calories.

This is where the learning was really beginning.

I fumbled and fuddled around the first week pretty much eating what was in the fridge and taking my Blood Sugar levels to see what happened with that meal. When I went to my first Drs appt after being an official diabetic for a week the Dr. told me I was doing real well. He told me he was proud of me. He was pleasantly surprised that I had tested my blood sugar as instructed and had given myself insulin as instructed.

(this is where I have to say -- Why wouldn't someone follow instructions on such a serious disease? I can understand denial but when I was told "out of control diabetes" I listened. And then Googled everything I could, just like he said I would lol)

He upped my long lasting insulin in the evenings and told me to come back in two weeks.

The next two weeks I had a lot of trouble sleeping. My feet were absolutely killing me. They hurt, itched, ached, shot pains up my legs and pretty much made for horrible sleep. Then last week the horrible pain stopped. I can sleep now. I've had some weird issues with my feet for a few years now - as I've read, it is probably a diabetic issue. I think they are actually getting better though. I'm going to talk with the Dr. more about my feet at the next appt. I've got a list going into each appointment.

The other night I was having some problems so I asked a friend to just talk to me. She suggested a support group. You could have knocked me upside the head. I go to the Liver Transplant support group and encourage others going through the process to get involved in it - why it never occurred to me to join a support group is beyond me. I haven't found a physical group here in my town yet but I did find an online community last night,

The things that group were talking about just blew my mind. Not all carbs are created equal. Sugar is OK in some things. Some foods are just poison to a diabetics system. Goodness.

I ordered a few books today. I'll talk about those when they arrive.

This is going to be a whole new chapter.

The learning never ends.


Susan M. said...

They say you're never too old to learn, but I don't think whoever started the saying had this in mind. Diabetes, scary stuff. Sounds like you have a great attitude as always. Knowledge is ALWAYS power. Hope you can find a local group, sometimes it helps more to have that one on one support. I know you can control this! HUGS!

Mrs4444 said...

Wow. When my dad got diagnosed with diabetes, he said, "Those damned doctors think they know everything. I just had a really big chocolate bar that morning; that's what threw off the tests." Pshaw! He's dead now. (JK-Yes, he's dead, but it was leukemia, not diabetes that killed him.) Just thought I'd offer up a little funny in your day :) Glad you're going to take care of yourself.

Terri said...

wow that's crazy to be hit with a ton of bricks like that. Good thing it is a VERY manageable disease. Hopefully with your diet and meds things will start to fall into place soon.

Kirby3131 said...

Susan - Thanks. I will be looking for a local place, real soon.

Mrs4444 - I wasn't expecting that lol I plan on taking very good care of myself. Thanks

Terri - It was a ton of bricks. I expect to be an expert in a few months lol

gingela5 said...

Wow, that's quite the diagnosis. I'm sure you were shocked! I hope everything goes well with that and that you find the information that you need.

Kelli said...

Welcome to the club! I was diagnosed almost 2 years ago and I'm still around! It was actually a good thing because it was just the kick in the pants that I needed to get my act together. I'm not on insulin, just meds along with diet and exercise. One of the best things I found was a book called The First Year: Type 2 Diabetes, An Essential Guide for the Newly Diagnosed. It's a great book with tons of information. I learned more from that one book than from all the others. Good luck.

"J" said...

I hope you really get this under control!!!!! It's bad!!!!

So, can you ever get off the shots???? I mean it you get it under control with diet...can you stop shots???

I don't know if I could give myself shots? For real? OMG!!!! Get this under control!!!!

So what did you learn!!! What foods and really bad for you and what sugar is okay for you??? Now I want to know!!!!

Keep up the good work and keep ME updated!!!!!!


Rina said...

I too am a type 2 diabetic. Being diagnosed threw me completely for a loop. Very very upsetting. Then, info junkie that I am, I got on the internet and went to the book store. The book recommended above is a very good one, and I found a lot of support, and more importantly, education at the American Diabetes Assoc. message boards. I think it's The other thing I strongly recommend is that your doctor send you to a diabetes educator. No matter how much you think you have learned from other sources, this is a valuable tool. I went to classes at a local hospital for 2 or 3 days.

Good luck!

Molly said...

Found you on Prairie Woman.

Let me just say that your doctor--yeah, he sucks rocks.

You need to see a diabetic educator and a diabetic nutritionist. Like, today. Telling you to just figure it out for yourself is TOTALLY and COMPLETELY inexcusable. Not to mention the fact that it sounds like his bedside manner leaves something to be desired. LAME. What if you'd had cancer? Would he have just walked into the room, said "You have cancer and you need chemotherapy," handed you a bag full of drugs, and told you to work the rest out for yourself, or worse yet, to look for information on the INTERNET? Because, um, hello, the internet is widely known for being the source for the most up-to-date, well-reasoned scientific information available.

You need to find out what your A1C is and whether an insulin C-peptide was done. Your doctor will know what these tests are--and if he's not a total jack-off, he'll know the answer to the questions. So frankly, from the sound of things, I wouldn't hold your breath. Get a lab order for these tests--demand one if you need to.

You'll also need a referal to the educator and the nutritionist if your insurance is going to cover it. Once again, demand them if you must. ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL, especially since your doctor doesn't sound terribly interested.

Here's my cautionary tale--8 years ago, I got the flu. I had it for three months. I started to have weird heart palpitations so I went to the doctor. The doctor told me I was a type II diabetic. She never drew an insulin C-peptide or checked my hemoglobin A1C.

Ten months later, I had lost 100 pounds. I was a shadow of my former self, so to speak. I had faithfully taken my Metformin and my Avandia every day, as ordered. My blood sugar was 400, on a good day. Most of the time it was higher. I couldn't walk across the room without assistance. I almost died in the emergency room.

My doctor, who diagnosed a 25-year-old, overweight-but-not-obese woman with no family history of diabetes and no previous insulin resistance, with type II diabetes, never did a single lab test to confirm the diagnosis. I was not a type II diabetic. I was a type I. Every time I asked her for help she would tell me that if I would eat better and lose weight I would feel better.

Eat better? Yeah, since I couldn't stand to eat at all, I probably could have eaten better. Lose weight? Faster than ten pounds a week? If I asked her a question, guess where she referred me? The internet.

See where the problem is there?

Run away. Run fast. If you have questions about living with diabetes, feel free to email me--molwade26 (at) aol dot com.