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Viva Las Vegas and the waiting game in a walk-in clinic

Anna's Blog
By: FatCatAnna

The Roller Coaster Ride of Diabetes! Whoo! Whoo!

I am a Type 1 diabetic diagnosed back in the early 60's as a child.  I am living in Montreal, Canada and enjoy scribbling about diabetes from time to time. I’ve had my ups / downs just like any person would experience with going through life - diabetic or not.  My motto in life?  Diabetes does not control me – I control it!! 

You can find more posts/discussions at my Facebook page called "The Roller Coaster Ride of Diabetes" and also on Twitter under the name of FatCatAnna.  Feel free to follow me at both places or send me a private message!

<< November 2010 >>
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 Blog Entries
The joys of having Bowie my CGMS – Chapter 1 - Sep 02
 Okay, for those of you who have never read my #dblogs before, I give names to all my little gizmos that I use for controlling my diabetes.  What we have today, ...
In a slump and scared - Jul 21
It’s rare for me to compose a #dblog that is not all “chirpy chirpy” … I think the last time I did one that was kind of down was at Diabetes1.org ...
Surviving the Holocaust with Type 1 diabetes - Mar 27
  " To the best of my knowledge, I am the only diabetic who survived years of imprisonment in German concentration camps. This is my story "   The above words ...
Sugar and Your Health - Mar 06
The other day I emptied out a 4 kg (about 10 lbs) of white sugar that I had dated a year ago when I opened it.  I use white sugar purely for cooking (I make my own ...
Eating from the ground - Yuca Fries - Feb 20
I am home now from a working holiday, in the Bahamas and Miami.  Despite the weather being abit cooler then normal (they only get 2 weeks of winter - we were there in ...
Posted: Nov 24, 2010 10:03
  • Viva Las Vegas and the waiting game in a walk-in clinic

    Last Thursday, I did something that I’ve never done before and hope to never do again.  My eyelash brush – a device that separate eyelashes after they’ve been gooped up with mascara – to look more “full and desirable” (those ads are highly misleading did you know that?).  That evil little metal brush scraped up against my eyeball.  Right away, I’m looking myself in the mirror, ready to do combat duty in the depths of the jungles, except I don’t believe in warfare and guns!  As I silently cursed, I wiped the entire gunk off wondering “what the heck have I done?”

    I went on with my day as best as I could – not seeing the greatest out of that one eye (and of course – this is the eye that I blogged about a few weeks ago was discovered to have a cataract developing -  ).  I start to wonder if K2 (aka Kelly Kunik) felt the same way when she started to have problems with vision in one eye (but hers was not done by a stupid move like mine).

    Next morning, as the saying goes with Dorothy in Wizard of Oz - “I don't think we're in Kansas anymore Toto.”   My eyeball was in pain/bruised/blood shot; feeling like it had been dragged thru’ the sandy beaches of Florida – up and down the east / west coast and tearing up even though I wasn’t watching a sad movie.  I immediately called my ophthalmologist, to find out she wasn’t there, and only one ophthalmologist was available in the clinic and unable to see me.  Their suggestion, go to one of the many walk-in clinics that we have on the Island of Montreal.  So in less than 5 minutes flat, I got changed and with one eyeball functioning, got myself to a clinic nearby.  Lucky 39 was my number and it was only 9h30 and the clinic had been open for only an hour.  I knew I had a long waiting game ahead of me with hacking folks surrounding me.  Oh joy – and with not being able to see properly – not able to pass the time with my head sunk in a romantic trash novel.

    By 10h00, I decided to test my blood sugar (BG).  Before I’d left, I’d tested my BG, and it had been at 4.2 mmol/l (75 mg/dl).  Since I’d rushed out, I’d had no food.  The theory behind a basal insulin is that if it is correctly set, you can go without food and maintain a steady blood sugar … in a perfect world that is.   My BG was now 3.1 mmol/l (55 mg/dl) – I was going down.  Luckily I’d grabbed an oatmeal bar, so rammed that in my mouth.

    10h30 comes around – triage is calling 21 and a man walks up – he explains his situation of having high blood sugars in the 17 mmol/l (300 mg/dl) range.  He goes and sits down to wait for his number to be called to see the doctor next.  I feel for him, and am ready to go over and sit with him and talk to him, as I’m having issues with not being able to Tweet (yes – I’ve become hooked).  I glance down at my insulin pump and discover … 1 unit of insulin left in Salvador.  I start to go into freak out mode internally.  I completely forgot in my rush out the door to change my infusion set and reload my juice of life. Frack!

    I go up to the counter and explain my situation and ask if I can go home (20 minute drive one way) to change my insulin cartridge.  The person does not understand what a insulin pump is and eventually she gets that without insulin I’m not going to be very well.  She then says in my case, she will let me keep my number, and will process me shortly despite my number being what it is.  Half an hour later, I get “processed” and of course, a few people with earlier numbers get in a huff, and I try my best to tell them my situation.  My day is going really well – and it’s only 11h00 now.

    11h45 – I’m back at the walk-in clinic – armed with pen needle and other spare parts for insulin pump that I DID NOT HAVE before heading out in the morning.  BTW, did you know driving the speed limit to the “t” gets you to your destination faster?  I never had to stop at any of the lights that are along the route I take. 

    12h00 – Occlusion Alarm.  I’ve never had one of these before in my 3 years of pumping.  WTF? I follow the instructions and start pumping again.  BG has gone up since I rammed that oatmeal bar into me – am at 13 mmol/l (234 mg/dl).

    14h00 – BG is not budging.  My buttocks are getting tired of sitting for so long. Wishing I had sunglasses from car - bright lights are making my eyeball leak like a sieve.

    15h00 – Number 22 has been called and patient is seeing doctor.  Feel like I’m in Las Vegas at the craps table, roll the dice, come on, come on, number 39!!! I decide to give injection with rapid insulin as BG’s are now hovering in 15 mmol/l (270 mg/dl) range.  A few folks that have been around since 08h30 – ask about my insulin pump – they’ve never seen one before.  They look away as I inject with the juice of life with my pen needle.  Come on do your stuff and start lowering my blood sugars!

    16h00 – Occlusion Alarm - second one in 4 hours!  Now I’m really beginning to freak out - I'm using a steel infusion set - so cannula can't be kinked - urrrhh.  Call up hubby at home to tell him to pull out Animas 2020 manual and see if there is more explanation as to why this is occurring.  

    …. to be continued

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