Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Settling In

More changes came our way this month. After giving things a lot of thought and trying my best to make it work, I resigned from my job and accepted a position at a different company.

There's no need to go into much detail, but the job and hours were just not right for me, even if my coworkers were great. So, I'm on to the next chapter and really am enjoying my new job. It's a huge relief, and I'm able to do the kind of work I like.

That said, the career move has also helped out with my blood sugar spikes and schedule. Anyone with diabetes, particularly type one, will tell you that keeping a relative schedule is important to the management of the condition. Now that I'm working standard office hours with little variances in meal times and activities, my numbers are flatter and I'm using less insulin.

I've also been taking my Vitamin D supplement for five weeks. It's hard to say if it's been helping with anything, or if I'm just feeling the cumulative effects of the new job and settling in here in Ohio. However, I'm feeling great, so either way, it's a win.

I turned 29 a few days ago, and I'm looking forward to a great year!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Diabetes and The Other D

A lot has happened in the past two months. I'd like to say that my schedule and stress have evened out, but that is certainly not the case. Moving is hard work! That's all I'll say.

On the upside, Anthony and I have gotten to spend a lot of time with both of our families since moving back, and have been able to reconnect with some old friends we haven't spent much time with for the last several years.

I've also gotten hooked up with a great new Endo, Dr. M, and a CDE. We're working on some basal testing right now in preparation for my next appointment. For those unfamiliar, this involves skipping meals and adding lots of finger pricks to see how my pump's basal insulin settings function without the influence of food and extra insulin.

And today, I had a follow-up discussion with Dr. M about some bloodwork she had drawn a couple of weeks ago. All in all, everything was great. Kidneys, cholesterol, thyroid and all of those other things that can secondarily go bad with Type 1 are doing fine.

Except for one. Now I have a new "D" to worry about - a Vitamin D deficiency. And suddenly, lots of little things make sense. Higher levels of stress and anxiety, feeling more tired than normal, and, I've been sick more times this year than I have probably been for the last several years combined. All of these little things could be affected by low Vitamin D levels.

A web search says that this is very common, and likely very under-diagnosed. To give me a quick boost, I am taking a once-a-week mega-prescription Vitamin D pill for a couple of months, and when that brings me into a normal range, I can rely on over-the-counter supplements. There's not a lot we can do to get more D from diet. Even Vitamin D Milk is not concentrated enough to help much - you'd have to drink several glasses and eat five servings of salmon every day to reach desired quantities of the vitamin. Humans evolved with the ability to synthesize their D from the sun, just like plants. Since we drive cars, sit behind windows (or in windowless offices like me) and wear sunscreen, we just aren't getting what we need from nature. This is not to say that I don't do plenty outdoors. Anthony and I go for evening walks, and we bike and golf on the weekends. However, like my pancreas, my photosynthesis just needs some help.

I took my first dose with dinner this evening, and I hope I will be able to see some benefit from this little miracle vitamin soon.

Monday, June 4, 2012


Last week, I finally pulled the trigger and went to see a new endocrinologist in Dayton.

It had been about six months since my last appointment with Dr. K in West Virginia, but with all of the changes in insurance, moving and scheduling with a new doctor, this was the soonest I could make it in.

My new endo, Dr. M, is a tiny, soft-spoken, sympathetic woman who knows her stuff. The first thing she did was upload all of my pump data, right there into the exam room, so we could go over my plans. She agreed with most of my assessments, and was very pleased with my numbers considering the general stress involved with moving, selling a home from another state and starting a new job and life in a new city.

We outlined a couple of areas that need improvement, and she had some helpful ideas for handling the challenges provided by my new job. It has me managing nighttime events after a day at the office several times a month, which obviously, confuses my eating/insulin schedules. Dr. M was very understanding that this is a transitional period, and was hesitant to make many changes to the routine that was working for me a few months ago and is still largely okay.

All in all, it went better than I expected. As stressful as these recent changes have been, I was definitely worried about the "getting to know you" appointment.

I go back to see her in a month for a "real" appointment and to see how the numbers are panning out when things have (hopefully) settled down for me personally. She also referred me to a CDE (certified diabetes educator, for those who don't know the lingo) who she likes all of her patients to see. I've never been to a CDE, having just seen an endo or family doctor in the past, so I'm looking forward to having a team look out for me.

And on a positive note since my last post, thanks to my parents' garage serving as our storage unit for now, Anthony's and my apartment no longer looks like this...

Thursday, April 5, 2012

When do you tell?

It's time to catch back up to speed here on Sweet Feat. You may remember me writing about moving and job hunting last post, so  you can probably guess what I've been doing...

Our house in West Virginia is empty (still for sale) and our apartment in Ohio is so full that it overflowed to my parents' garage. And, yay, I started my new job this week!

No, it's not a pager.
Which brings up the question all of us Type 1s are familiar with - when do you tell? Being just four days in, the opportunity to disclose hasn't really presented itself yet. And I didn't exactly want to lift up my shirt (see right) during the Monday staff meeting and say, "Hi, I'm Courtney - check this out!"

Being as I have a blog and post to Facebook, this obviously isn't something I'm keeping a secret. Also, with several pending friend requests out to my new coworkers, they'll probably figure it out soon enough.

So, my plan is to just roll with it as it comes up naturally. I had a moment today, when someone asked if there was anything they should know about me, but a client walked in and it was no longer the right time.

Aside from that issue, everything has been going very well with the move and both of our new jobs. We also picked up some new bikes last weekend for the awesome Dayton area bike trails. We went for our first ride on Sunday, and plan to go this weekend too. I have a feeling we'll be doing nothing but biking and golfing all summer!
As Freddie would say, "I want to ride my bicycle, I want to ride my bike..."

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

It's good to be a Buckeye again!

I'm a terrible blogger...but in my defense, there has been so much happening since the holidays!

Long story short, Anthony accepted an awesome new job and we are officially moving back to my hometown in Ohio. We thought long and hard about leaving the home we've built in West Virginia, but in the end, it was impossible to say no.

January was filled with getting our house on the market, packing, apartment viewing, moving and stomach flu.

During the week following Christmas, Anthony and I, plus about a dozen other family members from his side, came down with a nasty virus that made us very ill for about a day, and nauseated for several more days.

A couple of weeks later, after listing our house and verifying Anthony's new employment details, we started the search for an apartment to make home while our house sells. We found a winner, and lucky me, I also found another strain of the stomach flu. Apparently I was uniquely qualified to pick up both the Greater Columbus and Greater Dayton variants of the virus. Good times.

Anthony started work at the end of the month, so we moved some of our furniture into the apartment, while I kept (the nicest) majority with me at the house. I am staying behind for now, waiting for our house to sell and trying to find a job in the Dayton area. When one or the other happens, I'll be joining Anthony.

With all the stress of moving and job hunting, my blood sugar has been well-behaved, barring the two times I had the stomach flu.

Now onto the scary diabetes portion of this post:
During my first round of The Virus, in the three hours preceding the onset of sickness, I stayed at a steady 65. I ate an entire pack of Twizzlers, half a bottle of sugar tabs and drank juice to try and bring up my number. Sometime during this episode, I realized my Glucagon injectable (an emergency dose of sugar) was expired. By five years. Oops.

After nothing working, I started throwing up everything I had ingested in the last three hours and told Anthony that we may need to go to the ER. As a desperate last attempt to get some sugar, I dissolved some table sugar in half a cup of hot water and managed to keep it down for almost an hour, which was long enough for the sugar to work. It was the last thing I kept down for the next day, but after The Virus really hit, my sugar skyrocketed anyway. It happens, unavoidably, when you're sick.

Lesson learned? Make sure your Glucagon is current! This could have ended in a trip to the ER or worse, but it was okay.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

I wish you...

Happy Holidays, whatever you're celebrating!

Anthony and I will be visiting both sides of the family for Christmas.

A new glucose sensor has been locked and loaded on my leg in preparation. I have a good understanding of what works and doesn't work for me during family functions. I can enjoy a few of my Mom's No Bake Cookies, but I lay off the sandwich bread and eat a lot of veggies. I can enjoy a few glasses of Anthony's aunt's homemade wine, but I have to dial up for it because it's so sweet.

Being with family and friends who we see only a few times a year calls for indulgence, so keep in mind that blood sugar works with the same principle as gravity - what goes up WILL come down.

Also, I will be celebrating my seven-year diaversary on New Year's. Maybe I'll bake a cake!

Have a wonderful Christmas and New Year!

Monday, November 14, 2011

World Diabetes Day

Today is World Diabetes Day, when people across the globe will observe and remember those who are challenged with this disease. There's not much else to say, so I'll leave you with some visuals that show how diabetes impacts my life every day...