The process of packing up and heading out for the day has definitely changed not only after my diagnosis in 2004, but even more now with a 1-year old (actually, just a few days shy of one). I have come to perfect the “leaving for the day” thing, except sometimes, I forget my diabetes bag.
Several years ago, while at a K-Mart in Pennsylvania, my wife found a Philadelphia Eagles pencil case and she bought it and then said to me, “I figured you could use this for your supplies in my purse.” I still use that case every single day of my life.
I found that there wasn’t a single glucose meter case from any of the companies that fit exactly what I needed. Here is what I keep in that bag:
- Vial of insulin
- Vial of test strips
- Lancing device
- Reservoir for pump
- Extra tubing for pump
- Infusion Set
- Infusion set injector
- Lots and lots and lots of used test strips (literally 100 at a time)
This bag is usually kept in my wife’s purse, or now, the diaper bag.
I try to always have this bag stocked with items because when we have to leave for the day, we are both concerned about making sure we have enough diapers, wipes, food for the kid, extra outfit, etc. You know, all the crap a kid needs throughout the day.
There have been many times that I have forgotten the “Eagles Bag” at home and had to come back home to get it, or just hope that my current infusion set didn’t rip out or leak. So, my wife and I have devised a plan to make sure that never happens.
First, we give each other a 15 minute warning for when we are going to be ready to leave. Typically, whoever is the one that is getting showered, dressed, etc last will give that warning.
Next, my wife gets started preparing the diaper bag for the long day, or short trip, whichever. If my wife is the one getting ready, then I will get the diaper bag ready….. meaning, I ask her one by one what needs to go in it.
Once the diaper bag is ready, I then go and grab my Eagles Bag and ensure that it has everything in it that I need. I then put it in the diaper bag. The diaper bag is then put on the couch near the door so that when I am leaving and setting the alarm, I don’t forget the diaper bag.
I’ve forgotten the diaper bag in the past. I was told by my wife that I forgot the diaper bag. I have never again forgot the diaper bag.
After 12 years with diabetes (April 3 will be 12) and one year with a kid, we have finally gotten this traveling out for the day thing down…. so far.
I don’t think that people truly understand everything that goes into the daily life of someone living with diabetes. Things just as simple as getting in the car to drive to Target or visit family requires planning and prepping and making sure that you don’t forget crucial, life saving supplies.