Category Archives: rambling

No D Day

No D Day…being that I rarely blog specifically about D, I thought this would be easy. Then I realized it’s always brought up some way, because it’s a huge part of my life. So here’s my attempt of a no D day post…

Consequences are a you know what. I don’t believe in karma, but I fully believe in consequences and fully support them. Coming from that perspective, consequences are really frustrating. I made a poor choice, which led me to more poor decisions, and things progressed from there. I am dealing with the consequences. It’s unbelievably frustrating to know it’s completely your own doing that puts you in a crumby place.

It’s fairly common for people to think I’m a cold person. I don’t get emotional about things, I can be rational to a fault. Seriously, I get myself in trouble way too often. Yet, I made irrational decisions; I knew better. Not that there’s anything I can do about it at this point, but I’m disappointed in myself. All I can do is pray for grace.

I have a friend whom I admire greatly. When I was in high school he told me whenever asked how he’s doing he’ll always respond “better than I deserve”. I understand not everyone can identify with that statement, but to me, it’s an incredibly humbling perspective. Because, honestly, I am always doing better than I deserve to be. Yes, the world is full of injustice, and life is cruelly unfair; but it’s still better than what I deserve. By this I mean, I don’t deserve to be with God in my life. None of us do; it’s really only by His grace I have the choice to have a relationship with Him. (I know you may disagree, and I’m not trying to argue, I promise)

The last few months have been incredibly emotionally draining. But it’s a position I put myself in, by choice. It’s been so hard, so much harder than I expected. And I’ve spent a lot of time asking “why?” And, yes, someone else’s choices and behaviors could have made this less draining; but people are free to make their own choices. When you involve yourself with others, you put yourself at their mercy.

When you tell a friend a secret, you’re trusting them to be kind with it. When someone chooses to open up to you, they are being vulnerable. My past has made me very weary of allowing myself to be vulnerable…and I’m clearly not great at identifying the right people with whom to share. But, you live and learn.

I guess that’s why I’ve been able to remain joyful, despite the challengingness of this Summer; perspective. I’m still alive, still learning and have a life so much better than what’s deserved.


On Hold

I’ve been on hold for almost 30mins now & have run out of Twitter updates and Facebook statuses to read. After a moment of pondering, blogging was the obvious next course of action!

Life has felt like it was kind of on hold for a while…by a while I really mean the last two years. Right now is a really exciting, albeit scary, time for me. It’s mostly little things, but it’s still pretty awesome!

I’m in a toothsmithing program and loving it! What is toothsmithing?, you ask…it’s making teeth. Dentures, crowns, bridges, implants: the whole shebang! It’s the perfect combination of art and science. It’s also the first time I’ve been a full-time student in 8yrs…totally scary!! But I got my first two tests back today and both were 100% A’s! I think I maybe can do this whole student thing!!

I started teaching swim lessons last week. As a kid, when I was learning to swim, I remember wanting to one day teach kids to swim. It’s kind of a weird early memory I suppose, being that I was about four at the time. Now with diabetes though, holy moly, it’s scary. But I’m determined to prove I can do it!

Why is swim teaching such a big deal with diabetes? Lots of reasons! I’m in the water for 5hrs at a time with kids depending on my ability to help them and keep them safe. My insulin pump is waterproof (thank you Animas!!!) which is incredibly helpful. Dexcom is not…meaning my ability to monitor my blood sugars during that fairly active time period of 5hrs is pretty challenging. Testing on a meter is also hard, since my fingers turn to raisins and my hands are covered in chlorinated water. BUT, thus far I’ve made it work and am determined to keep making it work. Gatorade has become ny new best friend and watching what I eat before teaching has become a much bigger deal. It’s exciting and scary; which means it’s totally awesome!

Yeah, I’m still on hold…lame!

I’m also taking this hour long hips, thighs & ab class this semester and it kicks my butt! And makes it hard not to be paranoid. I’m a control freak and exercise makes my blood sugars anything but stable. So far things are going well, which is great! Even better, things have been going well even without wearing my dexcom!

Like I said, it’s nothing too big or amazing, but it’s awesome anyway.

At this point I kind of want to hang up…but I’ve already invested all this time…and mobile battery.

This Summer has been pretty trying on my emotional sanity. And I’ve managed to keep things mostly in control diabetes & Crohn’s-wise. Minor issues yes, but overall pretty okay. I’m hoping the catalyst for my issue has been removed & I will try to be smarter with my relational choices from here on out.

I’ll be headed to Montana for a few days in 2 and a half weeks. I’m totally stoked! I’ve missed the West so, so much.

Life is exciting right now…and pretty “boring.” It’s a totally new concept for me. Usually life is not so pleasantly exciting and I’m being pulled in a million directions. But now it’s exciting and normal; I have a routine & it’s working!

Before I go…because let’s face it, blogging from a smartphone is a pain & makes your fingers tired…I’d like to point out how I started with my life being on hold & I’m writing while on hold…pretty clever, right? Hopefully I’ll be ending with no longer physically being on hold, since my life isn’t really anymore.

One can always hope, right?

…I think so, since I had on tattooed on my wrist and all…


What a Year it’s Been!

Where has the year gone?! Seriously!

Last year on June, 5th (aka a year ago today), I got Moyer. Moyer is my dog…though some refer to him as my son. He’ll be two at the end of next month. It’s amazing how the last year has flown by and all that’s happened.

Granted 2011 was far less crazy than years past. No major medical diagnoses, no new piercings, no new tattoos, no new states of residence, etc. Last year in March or April I was supposed to get my diabetic alert dog, as you can tell, that hasn’t quite panned out. My sister brought home a 10 month old husky in February of last year. As soon as I notified the organization, I was disqualified. I had been on the list three and a half years!!! I was heartbroken. BUT, I decided I’d train my own dog…with help of course. So the hunt for another ensued. In late May last year a puppy came to work that I loved. His name was Mugsy, a little bull terrier mix. I convinced myself…and my family, he would be a great dog to train. I have since met this dog…I’m pretty sure he would not have trained very well, at least for alerting me. The day I was supposed to get Mugsy, 10 minutes before he was supposed to be mine, I got a call that they had given him to someone else. That weekend was Maddie’s Matchmaker Adoptathon, it’s a weekend in June where they waive all adoption fees in most of Alameda, Contra Costa and San Francisco counties. It’s a great event and it gives a lot of animals new homes. If you are looking for a pet in the area, this year it’s THIS coming weekend 6/9 and 6/10.

I had Sunday (6/5/11) off work so I went on a hunt across most of the East Bay. My sister felt terrible about disqualifying me and about my losing Mugsy, so she helped out too! She thought I wanted a tiny dog. I wanted a normal size dog. I ended up with a HUGE dog. All afternoon there was nothing that quite fit. They were too small, too young, too old…just not right. So, on my way home, in a last ditch effort, I stopped by the brand new shelter less than a mile from my house. There was only one dog left. Her name was Emma, she was a lab and pit bull mix. In the last “dog suite” there was another happy (HUGE) black dog, but he was being petted by his new owners. I asked if I could meet Emma, I went out on a walk with her and one of the volunteers. This volunteer was special, and I am grateful for her everyday, she was a cadaver dog trainer for the government but had taken a leave of absence to deal with a dog hoarder issue out in Livermore. We got to talking about why I was looking for a dog…to add to my herd of already three. She said that either Emma, or a dog named London would be great. It turned out that the big black dog had NOT been adopted! So we went back to the shelter and took him,Londonwas his name, prior to that it was Jake (apparently shelters change the names frequently), for a walk. Emma was strong headed and needed a constant reminder of who was in control. London was much more mellow and easy going, though he walked through every puddle and loved romping through every bush. The trainer and I talked, and I thoughtLondonwas a better choice…she agreed.

I rushed home and had the dreaded discussion with my parents. I said I found THE dog! He was right around the right age for training. He was very trainable and people focused. But he was big, like really big. My father grumbled, my mother reluctantly agreed. Then came the big test, meeting the aforementioned herd. At the time, 12 y/o Sophie (a Keeshond), 6½ y/o Rawley (a Miniature Rat Terrier) and 14 month old Kaya (a Siberian Husky). We started the walk with my mother walking Sophie, my father walking Rawley and I had Kaya. The trainer/volunteer had London, she walked with him and our three then approached him. There were NO problems! Rawley hates the world, so he grumbled, but he was fine. The trainer, other volunteers, my parents and I all talked when we finished the walk, I said I should be back, but we needed to discuss a little more. So my parents and I walked home. My father was NOT happy. He didn’t want a huge dog…and he didn’t want a fourth dog. My mother was resigned. And I begged. They said I could get him! So I drove back to the shelter. The trainer started to cry…they started calling him London because she was from the UK and they had bonded. She was so happy I was taking him, as she already had 5 dogs and didn’t need a 6th. I was SO excited. And Moyer was too.

I went straight from the shelter to my work, inFremont, to pick up my paycheck so I could go get some supplies for him the next day. My father refused to pet or talk to him…or me for a couple days. My sister was shocked. My mother remained…and still remains resigned.

Last night I mentioned it’d been a year since Moyer came into our house at a rare family dinner. My father commented on what a horrible day it had been. I said he liked Moyer now though…he excitedly said he LOVED Moyer now. Every so often my mother asks if I can trade him…since he is so big. He sits in dinner chairs and lays his head on the dinner table. But, she loves him too…deep down, I know it! She’s even started to say of all the dogs, if he were a bit more mature, he’d be the best all-around dog. And she openly admits he’s the most loving.

Moyer is also known as Moyer the Destroyer, Moo, Moyster and Big Lug. He loves paper and has even eaten a lab slip, a prescription, bills and almost a $5 bill. He no longer bites EVERY dog’s tail that walks by him. He doesn’t wrestle nearly as much (THANK GOODNESS! He knocks everything over). He’s chipped one of my teeth. He’s split my head open. He loves his dental treats so much he sniffed out a brand new bag and consumed the entire thing…and then threw it up. At dinner he likes to sit at one of the empty chairs that’s away from the table, and stretch his neck across and lay his head on the table…yes, it’s bad table manners, but it’s SO cute and he’s only allowed after everyone has finished eating. He stretches his upper lip when he gets excited and smiles at you when you come home…if you don’t let him tackle you…which he knows he’s not supposed to do. He LOVES ice, opening the freezer door is the only thing that’ll get him up in the morning. He loves to sleep, especially like a person…with a pillow, laying length-wise on the bed. He goes to bed at 8pm and doesn’t want to get up til 10am. He’s a bit boisterous and occasionally injures those he loves (primarily me)…only because he’s so excited to see you. He thinks he’s a lap dog. As much trouble as he still gets into, he’s grown up a lot over the last year. And he’s a love…he’d be happy if you just sat with him and talked to him all day.

It’s been a good year. And I’m sure we’ll have many more…he’s been informed he’s not allowed to die…ever.

I apologize for my ridiculously long and somewhat embarrassing post today. I didn’t start out meaning for it to be all about Moyer…it just sort of happened. Maybe I’ll be more on topic next time!

A picture that’s up in my work :)


Happy Birthday Grandpa

This time of year throws me off a bit. There are a number of things I am very grateful for and there are a number that seem quite somber.

Back in 2008 I had my last Christmas with my Grandpa. It was a great Christmas. It was still at the point where everyone felt there was a chance his chemo treatment had been successful. Some thought it was inevitable it was his last Christmas with us. I wanted there to be more Christmases. His birthday was/is December 11th. That year I went up to where he and my Grandma lived at the time and we helped them set up for Christmas. I helped him set up their Christmas tree, the very same tree that is currently in my parent’s living room. My grandfather made Christmas so fun…well interesting I guess is the better word. He was the father of three sons and only had granddaughters. Each year he would pick out something just for each of his granddaughters, usually a piece of jewelry or clothing…something feminine. When he opened his presents he would start to zone out and even leave the room some years to go fiddle with his favorite presents.

We always celebrated with my grandparents on Christmas Eve, the Christmas Eves following his last have left me feeling a bit lost. In 2009 I refused to deal with it and spent the day playing Scrabble with a friend, went to Outback Steakhouse with my parents and then to a bar with a friend. In 2010 I’m not sure what I did…I know I played Scrabble with the same friend, after that I can’t recall. I am incredibly grateful to have a Christmas oriented Christmas Eve this year. Hopefully it will help me feel not AS mopey this year.

On the flip side, I am happy to remember that Christmas Eve. I am happy I was able to have a childhood with him as my grandfather. Happy is one word, but honored probably fits best.

This Sunday is the 11th. I’m not really sure what I’ll be doing aside from going to church. But wow, I’m not sure I’m prepared for it. I am not a terribly emotional person and my Grandpa shared his even less…yet when it comes to his birthday, Christmas, my birthday and his and my Grandma’s anniversary I turn into a big ball of tears, resulting in my feeling like I’m a huge ball of ridiculousness.

I love Christmas and the cold and the decorations and festivities…but when I slow down and think about past years I get all sorts of distracted and emotional…and then frustrated with myself for allowing it to happen. haha.

This has all been written during a plummeting blood sugar…which is one of the only other times I display emotions/cry/etc…I’m not mopey about it all and really didn’t intend to write something so negative. It sounds sort of negative, right? I think I’m just emptying my head…with lowbrain.


Wow

My life has changed a lot since mid-May.

June 5th I got my new dog, Moyer. I love him to death. He’s adorable…and huge. Think Clifford the Big Red Dog, but black and an actual life size. Standing on his back two legs he’s taller than my 5’7″ sister.

I go to church again and am loving it. It was time, and I am grateful for grace.

I no longer have three jobs. I have one, full-time job. Moyer gets to come with me to work every day and it’s relatively close to home.

It’s been since late May since I was in the hospital.

I’ve now been diagnosed with Crohn’s for a year. It was a rough, rough year. Adding school, work, church & a social life into my routine hasn’t been easy. Almost two weeks ago now I saw my GI…I cried after. He put me back on flagyl, cipro & entocort. I felt like I was taking so many steps forward, only to take three steps back.  It didn’t help you could see the terror in his eyes when he found out I lose my insurance in March.

With the new meds and the Crohn’s acting up, my sugars have been all sorts of everywhere. It’s really quite annoying.

Toward the end of September I cut all my hair off. Not a buzz cut or anything, but my mother called it “butch”. Then toward the end of October I dyed it brown. I love it. It’s liberating.

Navigating a social life shouldn’t be such a challenge for a 25 y/o. But, between feeling completely un-cool and terribly socially awkward I don’t feel terribly comfortable socially. I love people…which is why I work with them, but at the end of the day I like my peace and quiet. Humans are social by nature though, so I feel it’s best to maintain some form of a social life…well first I need to start one. I’m not great at it, and usually feel quite weird and out of place, but I am trying. That sounds potentially very lame, I think I’m okay with that though. Between diabetes, Crohn’s, work, family, church, school and my own sanity, being social unfortunately doesn’t always rank high on my priority list after a long day or week.

Aside from hoping to become more comfortable socially, I’d really like to be able to eat again soon. By that I mean eat an entire meal and not feel like digging a 10ft hole to bury myself in within the hour. Currently, I can handle, barely, half a meal MAYBE twice a day. I eat so I can take my meds, otherwise I get even MORE sick. :( It’s really very annoying.

Also, I’d like to take a class on social implications, expectations and perceptions…apparently I’m not great at them.

That’s kind of a 6month wrap up. It’s more a “late on a Saturday night and my head has a million things going on and something needed to be spit out” wrap up. Let’s pretend I was trying to be more diligent with my blog and give an update though :)


A Good Day

Been feeling like they’re few and far between these days.

Oddly, Tuesday was a good day. Nothing spectacular happened, I didn’t do anything particularly exciting or important.

I got lost in Danville, not really I just forgot where I was going so I guessed and guessed wrong. Then I placed something in my head, only to see my head was wrong and reality was a bit different. However, the actual intended destination was near where I thought it had been.

My oral surgeon had to pull out a stitch that wasn’t healing…hurt like a…I don’t know what, but it hurt.

Stent is still annoying the crap out of me. ALWAYS feel like I have to pee! And there started to be more blood today:( Today I get it out though! Can I tell you how NOT excited I am about the procedure?!?! It’s big and goes from my kidney, through my ureter to my bladder. I will be AWAKE while he puts the hook in to pull it out! But I am glad it’ll be gone.

Had class, am WAY behind and it’s going to take a lot of work to catch up with all my classwork.

At work we mop up the dog pee, if they’re inside. It’s Pine-Sol and water. After my shift I have to clean the pee bucket and refill it for the next shift. I splashed it all over my arm, hair, shirt and jeans. DOG PEE! ON my face!!! I was able to change the shirt after work, but didn’t have time to shower or find another pair of jeans and I’m 99.99999% certain I smelled a lot like a dog in class. After class, around 10:30 I was finally able to get in the shower.

Dogs are dirty, I know…and frankly really don’t care. We only wear work/casual clothes…jeans & old t-shirts/sweatshirts. But I can, without a doubt in my mind, tell you getting pee/pine-sol/water/dog hair splashed all over myself is not terribly enjoyable…funny, yes…gross, definitely. I think I may have wigged out if it got in my mouth, but so long as it stays out of me I’m good.

Monday night I was talking with Jess about forgetting diabetes stuff, I KNEW I would need to refill my pump at work Tuesday morning. I TOTALLY forgot my insulin! Thankfully it ran out towards the end of my shift and was able to go straight home, but waking to 312, dropping to around 90 at work and then popping right up to 344 was a bit exhausting.

Perhaps it was a good day because I was productive and actually tired. It’s a great feeling to be not only mentally in need of refreshment but physical too. There are so few opportunities for our society to be active in the workplace. Yeah, I hang out with dirty, slobbery, LOUD dogs all day…but I’m moving around, playing, cleaning. It’s not like I’m making a major (or any) contribution to society, but I’m making the dogs have a better day. Dogs are rarely as rude as people can be, they’re always grateful of your attention, they’re forgiving…and they take your mind off all the shit going on in the “real” world.

It’s hard to imagine anyone wanting to be a friend: I’m flaky and have to cancel last minute more times than I’d like, there’s CONSTANTLY something not right, hospital staff and pharmacies know me, I take meds that can mess with my ability to be completely with it, exhausted should be my middle name, eating out is beyond difficult, there’s always some conflict with my health and my family…I am starting to be more okay with this reality.
It’s my life, I can deal with it (most days)…but it’s really hard to “deal” with anybody else’s stuff too. I don’t say it to be selfish, honestly, just as a friend I’d like to be there for a friend as much as they are for me. Some days, that’s not a possibility. On the other side is that my life comes with a bunch of crap, most people have enough to deal with without me contributing anymore. I don’t mean petty drama or anything, but as a friend you care for your friends…when they’re having a hard time you want to be able to listen. A few friends understand and I love them for it. But there are others who get mad when I have to cancel, get pushed out of shape when I don’t respond quick enough, treat me like porcelain or think my limitations are just made up. If only they knew how much my limitations piss me off, I LOVE having a million things going on, tight schedules daily, etc but it’s just not me anymore. It’s okay I’m not, but it’d be nice to have other people on board, not to mention the poor responses make me feel worse about not being as capable.

Well that was a long rant in attempt to say, dogs don’t care what crap you have going on, they always like you. At one point on Tuesday I had 2 dogs on my lap, one between my feet, and two on each side trying to beat out the other for my attention. I definitely get tired of cleaning up poop and pee, breaking up rowdy dogs and hearing the deafening barking of some dogs…however, it can be incredibly therapeutic. It’s almost always chaotic, but a soothing chaos. Crazyness.

I’d love to have more good days, less sick ones. I think I cherish my good days more than I used to, it’s nice to feel like not such a disaster.


Take What You Can Get

I started a post on Feb 11th and never finished. It had a great title and everything: “The Dog Days are Over”. It was wrong, I think they’d only just begun.

February 11th I had two new pieces of information: (1) I was surprised with a new dog for my sister. A 10 month old Husky. Her name is Kaya and she’s every bit a puppy. (2) I FINALLY got a job! I was hired the same day we got the dog…and my new job is working with dogs. My official title is “Dog Handler” – I play with dogs, keep them well-behaved and end any fights. With the little dogs I end up cleaning poop, mopping pee my whole shift and with whatever time is left, I pet them. With the large dogs, I keep them from killing each other…not really, they just rile each other up and it’s my job to keep them settled…somewhat. They’re allowed to play, however, a lot of the dogs are right around Kaya’s age and get too excited. By the end of the three hours all the dogs are exhausted and most are stretched out on the floor.

So, there was going to be a whole blog about that…but now there’s more…

Did I mention my root canal finished? It failed. The tooth was pulled. I now have a lopsided mouth. It still bleeds from time to time, but the surgeon thinks it looks good so it’s not a problem.

Last Friday I made my first visit of the year to the ER. Thursday night around 9pm I started feeling pain in my right abdomen. By 11p I thought I was dying…perhaps a bit melodramatic, but I was in a LOT of pain. I tried going to the bathroom, but couldn’t and it didn’t really feel like Crohn’s pain, but I thought maybe. Then I tried a shower, didn’t work at all. Tried a heating pad, no luck there either. Finally I took some pain medication…which I don’t like to do because it tends to mess everything up with my Crohn’s. Then I was afraid to go to sleep because I didn’t want the pain medication to wear off and wake up in such searing pain. I had thought my doctor’s office opened at 7am so I planned to call then, turned out they opened at 8:30a, so I called the on-call doctor at 6:45a. She recommended I go to the ER, she felt it may be Crohn’s related and waiting to see the doctor, ordering the CT, getting the CT and seeing the results would take too long and it was a Friday after all.

So I told my parents where I was going and went on my merry way. There were three of us in the waiting room, I was the third…though I was called in first. (A bonus of having diabetes). The ER doctor felt I may need my appendix removed so he ordered a CT to find out. I survived my very first enema and did “well”…whatever that means. Turns out my appendix is just fine, for now. However, I had a number of kidney stones. They gave me more IV pain meds and sent me on my way. After a short spat with my mother regarding my ride home, I called my PCP’s office and asked for a referral to a Urologist. Then there was another short spat and a trip to the pharmacy…and then another pharmacy because no one carries PercoTAN anymore. My mother dropped me off at home with the THREE dogs and she and my sister left for the day.

Before they left Kaya of course got out because my sister needed to say goodbye to her 5 times and standing on the other side of the gate was unacceptable. Kaya then sprinted around the neighborhood. She finally came back and she was put in her crate. She screamed, cried and yelped…while I was trying to get the urologist to fit me in that afternoon.

I still couldn’t drive, my dad was coming home from work but was still an hour away and I had a friend I’d just canceled on…so I called her. The urologist could only fit me in if I could make it there by 2pm…which was 40mins away. I walked a half a mile down the street…in the pouring rain, met my friend on the corner, she dropped me off at the appointment and my dad met me there. Before leaving for the appointment my tooth started bleeding again. As my friend was driving I called the oral surgeon…he wanted to see me too. So I told him I could meet him at 3pm and explained the ER/doctor situation in a very abbreviated form.

Urologist showed me my CT, I had two large kidney stones and about 10 others in the right kidney and one in the left. He informed me I had a choice to have surgery done or not, but since I was at a higher risk of infection and already have inflammatory issues it was possible I’d need emergency surgery done. If I scheduled the surgery I could avoid another ER visit. …with my luck I thought it best to schedule the surgery. If I passed the stones over the weekend I could call Monday to cancel, otherwise Tuesday was the surgery.

Tuesday came, I had a morning appointment with my neurologist. That was lovely. I have another medication and “condition” or maybe he said “syndrome” but he told me it wasn’t technically a disease…essential tremors. The new med is Propranolol, a beta-blocker. Yay, just what I wanted! Another medication and another “condition”…I think I’ve had enough, thanks though.

Writing about this is depressing…I’ll be 25 in 13 days. It’s not time for my annual “yearly rundown”…but I’ve now had surgery, 2 in fact, am on more meds than I can usually remember, have three chronic conditions and two progressive conditions…2 more than I had last year….more doctor’s visits, more sleep, less life…I’ll shut up now…

So after the Neurologist appointment I went home, grabbed a few things and left for the hospital. I checked in at Noon, my surgery started around 3:30 and I left the hospital around 6:20p. My dad then took me to CVS to get the new medications and then we went home.

I’ve since spent the week peeing blood. I now know what it’s like to have an aching kidney. They put a stent in to prevent it swelling shut…thus the achy kidney. The pain lasted through Saturday. The pain medication has now screwed with Crohn’s and I’m in that kind of pain now…which pain meds will only make worse.

There is a med that is causing me to be really anxious before bed…I’m hoping it’s the pain meds and that’ll go away now that I’m not on them anymore. I’ve finished the antibiotic and the stop bleeding med…but didn’t take the flomax. I can’t really explain why, I think I’m just tired of having weird issues and weird medications and didn’t want to take a med intended for aging men with prostate issues. It’s a dumb excuse, but I think we all have a tipping point, and that was mine.

As a result of the hospital stay I now have three nasty bruises from the attempts at locating a vein for my IV. My sugars have gone batshit crazy…so it’s not just Crohn’s acting up. At least Crohn’s had the decency to wait til the surgery pain had subsided. We can’t always live in a perfect world, gotta take what you can get.


S-A-T-U-R-U-R-DAY NIGHT

Except it’s Sunday night. Mike Myers was on SNL this week (on Saturday night – see it’s sorta relevant). My favorite Mike Myers movie is So I Married An Axe Murderer, which has this song. So, it’s not entirely random.

It’s become apparent to me how much I’m stressing over this coming week and month. If I take every appointment as it comes and each day it comes, I’m fine. Seeing doctor appointments set Monday, Tuesday, next Tuesday and the Tuesday following AND the dentist this Monday too.

The dentist I’m not too stressed about.

My endo – I’m terrified. I know I have an endo complex, but I haven’t been this worked up for a while. My first and second endos were intimidating, one made me cry and the other told me they wouldn’t help me if I didn’t log my sugars. I should have logged my sugars, but I’m stubborn…and I’ve never been good at it. My endo in Montana was wonderful, I loved him. He was respectful and willing to help, but didn’t force things on me. I got a new endo when I moved back to California. He has been good. My first appointment he gave me Symlin and a Dexcom for a week. My second appointment he told me I was the most compliant patient he had and did amazing on prednisone. The day before that appointment was an amazing day, had one low and didn’t go any higher than 160 or something. Today, the day before this appointment, I’ve been 42, 140, 70, 160, 55, 275, 48, 300, 220, 270, 240 and now holding steady around 310. I have no way to explain it. It was just an off day of extreme zigzags. Until late in the evening it was just a lot of over-corrections in both directions. Now, I KNOW I’ve over-corrected, but I’m not budging. I have 15U in my system and I’m still not dropping. I swear, once I’m out of range it’s hell getting back. If I’m too low I really can’t function, if I’m too high I’m a big grumpyface prone to bitchiness. I feel like I need to be able to explain myself. I just don’t know how or why it really happens. It would make sense that this stupid ibuprofen is wreaking havoc on things, so maybe that’s it. Who knows if he’ll believe it though, he won’t believe me that Entocort EC is a steroid.

Tuesday I’m seeing my PCP. I’m happy to go there…except that it’s at 9:15a, but still happy to go. I can get my bloodwork done there. Also, I need to ask her about my shaking hands. It’s been really odd, I get really shaky hands. Not when I’m low, not when I’m high, just during the day. It’s slightly concerning. I really like my doctor. She’s nice to talk to about not just diabetes, not just Crohn’s, not just neuropathy…just about me.

I also have my second interview at the dog daycare/boarding facility on Tuesday. If I am hired I will most likely start this week. It’ll be nice to have a purpose for getting out and nice to be around dogs all days. Dogs are easier to be around than people…or at least they are for me. I’m a little nervous of handling school and 20hrs of work a week. It sounds lame, I know…but I really am so limited in what I can do. I get worn out SO easily. I hate being so limited, but it’s reality for me right now. Hopefully it’ll be great, not too much stress, fun and a good fit.

Next Tuesday I see my gastroenterologist. I already wrote about that appointment. I think they’ll be calling me tomorrow. We played phone tag about my dentist’s desire to put me on an anti-inflammatory medication. If they pull my tooth tomorrow, we’ll probably have to talk about what I can take for that too. It’s not worth it and probably not justified, but I feel like it’s my fault things aren’t going better with Crohn’s stuff. Or maybe that I’m not feeling what I’m feeling. Weird, I know…it’s just WHY can’t I get it together?!

The following Tuesday is my neurologist appointment. We need to talk about my muscle spasms and my shaky hands. He and I have only seen each other once and it wasn’t for very long. He doesn’t seem too interested in figuring out why I have neuropathy, but he seems to think I do in both hands and feet.

Eventually I need to see the eye doctor. But, I want to wait until I have a job so I can pay for at least something.

The one positive and even a little bittersweet part about all these appointments is that I can transfer over to my insurance’s mail order pharmacy. It just saves so much money. I LOVE my CVS in Castro Valley. I really don’t want to leave. But when you have meds that are $10, $25 and $40 every month and the mail order pharmacy charges the same for a three month prescription, you just can’t justify it. To make myself feel a little better I tell myself that I can still fill my temporary prescriptions at MY CVS…I’ve been on four or five already this year. I might have withdrawals if I don’t get to see them.

Another, oddly entertaining and somewhat pathetic event happened this weekend. My mother told me it’s been heavy on her heart I need a social life. Yes, a social life…as in getting out of the house. So she intends on occasionally donating $10 to my social life fund. Having no job and no money does play a part in my staying home so often…why leave to pay for gas, pay for wherever I’m going and whatever I’m doing? I can use the internet at home. While doing homework and studying outside the house would be nice…it’s cheaper to stay home. But, getting out will allow me to have some space from our already strained balance in the house. …Plus, I wore a short sleeve shirt today and I seriously need to get some sun!

Well, I started this on Sunday night, it’s now close to 1A on Monday…whoops.

I’ve added another reading assignment to myself…Last Child in the Woods. My roommate in ID had the book and I’d meant to read it but never got around to it. He told me about it and it sounded incredible. THEN my sister had to read the book for one of her classes in the Fall. She gave it to me tonight. Yay :)

One last thing…I’ve added another shower injury to last week. I bruised my toe REALLY badly, it’s black & blue and hard to walk, as I was getting out of the shower. I hit it on the door track. I’ve used this shower off and on since 1998…you’d think I could manage to use it and not injure myself.


Diabetes is a big fat liar

After you’re diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, medication has a whole new definition in your life.

Insulin is not an optional medication. It’s optional if you consider death an option, and I don’t.

As a kid our doctor (on the rare event we went to one) would write scripts, my mother would tell the doctor she’d fill them, never fill them and not return to the doctor until the law required it. Type 1 isn’t that lenient.

I see my doctors as often as they’d like to see me, or as close as possible. And I diligently take my medications as directed. I think at last count I was on 11 or 12 meds. When you’re on that many drugs your options are limited for additions, there’s a likelihood some meds will counteract others.

I haven’t had a paycheck since the end of October. The government is paying my tuition. My family is helping me with the rest. Diabetes and Crohn’s are expensive and require constant attention. Knowing money was tight for my parents I opted to take two of my medications twice a day instead of the prescribed 4 times.

My thought process was that I can cut those, at least I’m still getting some of the medication. Insulin is not an option. Metformin I have some backstock. Welbutrin, I’m not messing w/ my antidepressant usage. Imuran, it’s been the most helpful and I only take it once a day. Entocort EC…I’m almost out of that too. Nortriptyline, I’ve had BAD experiences weaning on and off my nerve meds so I didn’t want to do that & there’s no way to take a half dose. I can’t think of the rest but Pentasa and Dicyclomine got the cut. I am supposed to take 2 pills four times a day of Pentasa and one four times a day of Dicyclomine. I can live without that, right?

Well, I’m alive. But between my mouth, clusterfuck of sugars right now and the reemergence of severe cramps and nausea I’m not alive very happily.

And I know it’s not their fault for the timing, but with the stupid CWD forum from yesterday (and today? I’m not sure) I feel inadequate. It’s me, it’s not them. I’m allowing myself to feel this way. But, I feel like I’m saying “poor me” and I really don’t mean to. Everyone’s life is different and everyone has different shit they have to deal with. I don’t have a great family network to be able to vent and express, so here it is. It may not be the smartest idea to divulge so much information of how I “feel”…in person that’s the last thing I talk about. I prefer fact.

…which pisses me off more, I don’t like all this feeling crap. Feeling sick, feeling damaged, feeling useless, feeling behind, feel, feel, feel. I’d prefer to not feel, thank you very much. It’d be really nice to NOT feel like I’m a failure at trying to figure out my dumbass digestive system, how and when it digests and metabolizes what and knowing what my sugars do and are supposed to do. Why can other people figure it out and I can’t?

Off the feelings topic and now to why diabetes is a liar:

Diabetes tells you it’s the most important, it’s first. You MUST take your diabetes meds over any others.

Crohn’s meds are just as important. If your digestive system decides not to work your insulin regime is going to be all over the place. Sometimes the carbs peak at a “normal” time, some postponed…without any real regularity…unless you count a different story at every meal as regular.

Diabetes may be a big pain in the ass, but don’t let it fool you into thinking it’s more of a pain in the ass than certain other diseases, in my case Crohn’s.

Sometimes Crohn’s has to win…ex: my pain med options
Diabetes gets to win other times…ex: eliminating some pain med options b/c I NEED to use my dexcom and refusing to add ANOTHER steroid to the regime. There’s no way in hell I’m taking two steroids at once again…all the help the steroids do goes to shit if I can’t keep my sugars fairly moderated b/c it makes my stomach cramp with EVERY damn food.

Diabetes, you’re a big pain and I hate you. I hate you for the kids with T1, for the people trying to be a responsible and “normal” adult, for the parents who have the kids with T1.

Despite diabetes being an attention whore, I’m kind of scared to go to my GI on the 15th. It’s an earlier than originally planned appointment and I can’t see my regular PA. She said I need to meet with the doctor because she honestly doesn’t know what to do anymore. So, awesome, that’s encouraging. What the hell am I supposed to do with that? ..aside from being scared.

And I’ll shut up right now, or I’ll just add more profanities.


San Jose Sharks

I would say 95% of the people who read this didn’t know me in high school. Had you, you would have known I was a huge fan of hockey and the SJ Sharks aka my potentially unhealthy obsession. I mean, I don’t think it was THAT bad…but my mother definitely did.

Most junior high and high school girls had posters of NSYNC, 98 Degrees (that was the Nick Lachey band, right?) or Backstreet Boys…I had one poster I bought with some friends at the mall of Backstreet Boys. I didn’t purchase it because I liked them; I purchased it because as far as I could tell most of my friends were Backstreet fans over NSYNC. In addition to my one Backstreet Boys poster, I had a wall and a half (if I remember correctly) covered, no white wall showing through kind of covered, in hockey pictures.

My high school English speeches were almost always hockey or Sharks related. I studied the game: its history, rules, changes, expansions, player contracts, player association-league relationships. In my planner I had every game color coordinated (I’m still a girl lol) schedule written in, at the completion of the game I’d fill in the new team standings as well as scores, basic player stats, hits, shots on goal, etc. On game days I made sure to wear Sharks memorabilia and usually donned something Sharks related on other days. I begged my parents to let me go to as many practices as possible, they’d let me around 2 times a month. I have ALBUMS of player pictures. Albums wouldn’t be such a big deal if I had enough other pictures to create albums of those too…but I don’t. The ONLY full albums I have are filled with Sharks pictures.

In high school I was not at all in the “cool” group of kids. I wasn’t really in a group. Kind of a loner I guess. I had a couple close friends the first two years, a semester in a different school and acquaintances the remaining year and a half. My parents were also pretty strict so I didn’t have a lot of opportunity to enjoy extracurriculars…outside of school sponsored extracurriculars. Now that we have a basic understanding of my “fanship” and lack of a social status in high school…I would regularly be stopped by jocks to discuss Sharks news/scores/standings. Yep, that was how people kind of related to me…well the jocks, not so much other people lol. People really didn’t know much about me, which was sort of my fault I suppose, I was pretty quiet…aside from my teal clothing.

THEN…I moved out. And then moved back in. It’s a whole long story that really shouldn’t be blogged about. But when I moved out I left with a hockey room, when I moved back in I had yellow walls, porcelain dolls displayed daintily and a floral bedspread. Upon my return it was loudly expressed that hockey was too much of an obsession. I watched games, but I wasn’t allowed to yell/cheer/talk at the TV or at the games. AND, I wasn’t allowed to hang out with my hockey friend anymore. That was during the 02-03 & 03-04 seasons.

The strike…it was horrible. I was diagnosed with Type1 diabetes in August 2004. The lockout began Sept 2004. Then came the onslaught of medical confusion. And in May 2005 I moved to AZ. I didn’t have a tv for most of the 05-06 season. For the remainder of the 05-06 and all of the 06-07 season I didn’t have cable.

In May 2007 I moved back to California. By the time hockey season started the Sharks were almost an entirely new team-the albums of photos I had hardly resembled the team…AND I was working CRAZY hours. I was working on the campaign, there was no time to watch. There were the late night highlights and newspapers, but that was it. January 2008 I was out of the campaign and I no longer got Fox SportsNet. Thankfully the guy I was dating at the time was a sportsfan too and I could watch with him.

Between the end of 07-08 and the start of 08-09 I kind of took a break from sports in general. I guess I was worn out. As avid of a fan I had once been before, I guess I was worn out from paying attention to so many and scheduling around it. It was kind of nice not to care about every college football team…it helped that my Michigan Wolverines were PAINFUL to watch. By last Spring I was ready to end my break. It’s weird, I know, I don’t really know a better way to explain it. I think I just needed a break from NEEDing to know what was happening in the sports world. It was nice to just not know for a while, but because I really do love sports, I didn’t need too long of a break. In early 10 I wanted to know what was going on again, I missed sports. So lame…I don’t think any guy sportsfan would really think that way or have that issue, but whatever. I don’t think I’ve ever claimed to be exactly “normal”.

April 10 sent me to Idaho. I kept a few tabs on baseball over the summer and followed the NHL playoffs as best as possible. This past August I came back to California: sick and unemployed. Just in time for hockey. :) The NHL didn’t fail me this time. So, despite my lack of ability to watch my (VERY different) team on TV, I’m glad to listen. I’m happy to have the opportunity to follow them, just because they’re the team I’ve loved for nearly 15 years.

So it’s taken me a couple hours to type this, not because it took a lot of thought, I get distracted easily. But I can promise you I didn’t really mean for this to sound as sappy as it has come out. lol, oops. I’ve mentioned sports movies are the only ones that can make me cry, right?

Anyway, the real point to all this: it’s SO easy for people who regularly identify with being a “patient” to get caught up in just that, being a patient. We go on and on about how there’s so much more to us, but it’s taken a lot of effort lately for me to think of myself as anything but a patient. I see friends a couple times a month, usually hiding how crappy I feel; see doctors regularly; talk to the state and schools about disability related stuff – SO much of me is about being a patient.

Last Saturday (the day the Sharks broke the losing streak!! & my first full game all season-watching) was one of those days where I bucked up and saw a friend. I saw a friend I hadn’t seen since high school – before I was a T1, before I had Crohn’s…or a stupid root canal that won’t heal. Halfway through watching the games (both football and then the Sharks) I realized how much had changed, but sports hadn’t. There was still that. It seems a little silly and more sappy than I like to admit, but it was nice. If you’re a sportsfan, it doesn’t matter if you’re a diabetic, accountant or bodybuilder.

We, in the DOC, always talk about meeting so many people we wouldn’t have otherwise. We come from different places, do different things, are different ages, have different family’s and a lot of different interests. It’s something I think about all the time. But the Sharks or Wolverines or whatever team fans have that in common. You can be SO different, but it brings you together.

Going to practices so long ago, you met SO many different people. Old, young, in between. I went to a Sharks practice with a friend and my sister where the team was away traveling but the injured players were still skating; they invited the three of us and the couple others there to skate on the ice with them. I mean, it’s cool. You can go to a different state and meet a fellow fan and suddenly have a great conversation.

Maybe it’s me and I’m blind and just completely missed the similarity. I think the difference with the DOC and Crohn’s patients (I swear I need to come up with a word b/c it sounds stupid and cold…the other option is I could just move on…) is that we initially connect because of our disease and become friends; and then mention their disease casually as you discuss life. Reality is, our lives are filled with our disease. Not that it’s who we are, but that it’s something always on our mind. That’s not to say it’s always on the forefront of our minds, but it’s there. Knitters, sportsfans, gamers, athletes, car people (can you tell I’m not one? lol), whatever you’re into: most of the time you connect to “do” whatever it is you’re interested.

Does that make any sense? Maybe, hopefully, it at least does to people with chronic diseases.

Before I got on the second mushy-yay-DOC topic, I meant to say: I hope I start writing about more than my health. It doesn’t look like that’s getting any better ANY time soon (or in the long run), I should expand my horizons. I mean it kind of (actually REALLY does) sucks right now. Doctor told me on Friday that “we’re not actively controlling” my disease. She also said I should probably see the actual doctor in a couple weeks; I typically see the PA. Also my mouth is still swollen, still hurts and is still infected, I’m on a new, stronger, antibiotic. I guess for a while the Sharks had a bit too much attention and now I feel like my stupid health has too much attention. It isn’t going anywhere, so I’m just going to have to expand my attention giving capacity.


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