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Time To Re-Order Supplies ASAP

I contacted my endocrinologist today because I need a new prescription for my pump supplies before I see her later this morning.  I was hoping that I could just wait until I saw her on March 25 to get a prescription from her, but there is no way that I am going to have enough supplies until that time.  I only have four infusion sets left and about 7-8 reservoirs.  The reservoirs, I don’t really care too much about because I re-use them a couple times before I actually throw them away.  Infusion sets obviously can’t be re-used.  I have been keeping one set in for on average about 6 days, and that is not the best idea either.

I am also getting low on testing strips so I am going to get a prescription for that also.  I believe that I am going to stick with using my Freestyle Lite meter just because it is the one that I am the most comfortable with and have used for the longest time.  I don’t know if she will write the ‘script out until I actually see her, but I’m hoping that she will, she’s really nice, so I’m sure there is no reason why she won’t.

I have been out of sensors for a long time because the ones that I have expired in October or November, I’m not sure of the exact date, but I know that I shouldn’t be using them.  Thanks to a fellow d-blogger, not sure if you want to stay private or not, so I won’t mention your name unless you give the ok, was nice enough to lend me a few sensors until my insurance coverage gets a little better and I can start getting them on my own.  Now I just have to re-charge my transmitter because I haven’t used it in so long, not since October.  I am going to try and start using them on Wednesday, so I can get 2 full weeks worth of data for my doctor’s visit.

I hate being this low on supplies, but it is part of life.  I can get them, I just didn’t know the process of getting them and just became ignorant to that fact and haven’t taken initiative until recently to make a few phone calls to figure out what I was supposed to do.  Well, time to wait on the e-mail notification on whether or not I am going to get my scripts today or not.

Have a wonderful day everybody.

Hey JDRF & BD – This is What I Want in an Insulin Pump

All this press about all these new technologies and studies and companies joining up with non-profits to do this and to do that, and blah blah blah.  At first when I read the post by Amy from Diabetes Mine about JDRF and BD joining forces, it instantly just reminded me of the post I just had last week about why there will never be a cure! Next, it made me think, well what exactly is it that I want from an insulin pump or what do I want to have in order to manage my diabetes.  This is not like a Jetson’s post.  I am trying to keep this stuff logical and something that can happen in the near future.

Easy to Use

The very first thing that I want is for the device to be very easy to use.  Now that all pumps have built in carb counting and insulin suggestions, it makes life so much easier.  I love that they calculate how much active insulin there is.  Not too many buttons, just 2 or 3 at max to do what I need to do.


What I mean by this is that I want to be able to use my iPhone to link with my pump.  My iPhone is my life, literally.  I work from it, I communicate with family, Amanda has one also so we have apps that easily keep us in touch and on the same page with each others calendars etc.  I want to be able to just pull out my phone at the dinner table or at a restaurant and hit a few buttons and then bam, there goes the insulin.  I would like to also just have to use my phone as a meter, not just anyphone, because I know there are phones out there, but the iPhone.


I still use a Medtronic Paradigm, so I have never even used the tubeless / wireless OmniPod yet.  The number reason that I don’t is because I use about 120 some units of insulin a day.  That only holds 200, so I would be changing the pod every day and a half.  I would a pod to be able to carry, let’s say, 600 units of insulin.  I basically only want to change reservoirs and infusion sets, or pods just once a week.  It’s less work I have to do and less garbage and sharps containers I go through.  Charge the same price, it doesn’t matter.

CGM Built-In

I want the CGM and the pod or infusion set to the be the same insertion.  I don’t want to have to wear two separate things.  Very clear on that.

Well, that is what I want in my insulin pump.  I know some of these things exist, but not all in the same pump.  So, when JDRF is giving their millions to these companies, I hope they have spoken with diabetics themselves on what we want, not just what they want to create and think will make life easier.

What do you want?

4 Essentials of Managing My Diabetes

We all have our favorite meter’s, pumps, syringes, glucose tabs, CGM’s, and whatever else you use to manage your diabetes.  Here are my top 4 essentials to managing my diabetes.

Medtronic Minimed Paradigm 722Insulin Pump

This is my insulin pump of choice at this time.  It is the one that I was given when I first got the pump 5 years ago, well it was a Paradigm 712 at that time, but I upgraded to the 722 at the beginning of the year.  I don’t have any issues with the pump, but there are some things that I do like with the other ones as well.  This pump is my life right now.  I would not be able to manage my diabetes as easily without it.  I did MDI and it just didn’t work for me, I eat too frequently and eat at random times that just make it best for me to use a pump and bolus at any given time.

Freestyle Lite MeterFreestyle Meter

For a very long time I used all One Touch products.  That stopped about a year ago when I received a Freestyle Lite meter, and I haven’t switched to another since then.  I absolutely love this meter.  I never have any problems, it’s small and the best part about it is the light it has.  I test more frequently, especially at night because of this light.  I would never test at 3 am because I didn’t want to turn the light on because then I can never go back to sleep.  With this meter, I can just turn on the light on the meter, test, and go back to bed.  I do use other meters in different situations.  I use a True2Go meter when I am traveling or golfing because it carries easier.  I look forward to trying out the Contour USB, who knows, that may become the new meter of choice, we shall see.CGM

Minimed CGM

Even though I don’t use this as often as I should, when I do, it helps me out tremendously.  My average BG levels are about 20-30 points lower when I use it.  It comes down to dealing with the pain of inserting a new sensor.  That is the number one reason that I hate to put it on because quite honestly, it hurts.  The needle is extremely long, so that’s not a plus either.  Once it’s on and calibrated I love it.


You may be wondering why this is one of my essentials.  Well, it’s because this is the most comfortable item that I like to use.  When I eat a bag of Skittles(the small bag shown here), I know how much it will bring up my sugar, which means that I don’t overeat.  When I am eating other things like glucose tabs or orange juice or whatever else, I don’t know how much it will raise my sugar, so then usually my sugar is way too high at that point then.

Contour USB Meter – I Want One

First, my plan to start with the CGM yesterday didn’t go so well.  I did not have stable blood sugars for more than an hour yesterday, so I knew it’s not good to start a new sensor when my sugars are fluctuating.  So, we will have to try again today.  I’ve had a few bad diabetes days in the last 2-3 days.  My blood sugars haven’t been that bad, but also not that good.  I have had 3 sites fall out, I don’t know why they aren’t sticking.  I think it’s because my insertion device is not working properly.  I have another device, but of course I have no idea where it’s at, why would I know.

Today is going to be a long day.  I have a lot of work to get done, a lot of cleaning, a lot of laundry, and some ironing to do because I have an interview tomorrow.  I’m nervous because it’s the same office that my roommate works at, so I need to make sure that I am on my best game so I don’t make him look like a donkey(chose this word instead of the other to keep it pg), for him referring me.  Do you know how hard this is going to be?  There is a 24 hour marathon of college basketball going on todayon ESPN which is going to make it hard for me to concentration.  Plus, since this is the 3rd Tuesday that I have been unemployed, every Tuesday is a Law and Order: SVU marathon.  I have been probably never blogged about this before, but this is my favorite show.  Quick side note on SVU and how it became my favorite show.  Back in my freshman year of college I had a huge paper that was due the next day, what a surprise and I was working on it for like 3 hours straight without a break.  Then I decided to take a break and watch SVU for the first time, but I would mute the tv during commercials and do my paper for 5 minutes, then 5 minutes at the next commercial.  I did this for about 4 episodes of SVU and not only got my paper down, but read 3 chapters of a text book.  This than became the only way that I would do homework and reading, watch SVU or another show if it wasn’t on, mute the tv and then read.  I found that my attention span was only about 5 minutes anyway, so it worked out best.

Wow, sorry about that side not there.  I have seen a few people blogging about the Bayer Contour USB.  I freaking want one!  Can I call Nick Jonas to get one?  My little nieces (actually my cousins, but my aunt is more like a sister to me, so I have called them my nieces for 10 years, but now that I have an actual niece, my brother’s daughter, I’m not sure if I can still do that), they watch the Jonas brothers so that’s a good enough connection to them I think.  It looks so cool that you just test and then plug it right into the computer.  I never upload my sugars to the computer, ever.  I don’t have the USB cable for my Freestyle Lite, if I had one, I probably would.  My doctor’s office has every single one of them at her’s so when I go she just uploads them.

[As I’m typing this sentence a brand new episode of SVU is starting, pause while I watch the opening minute of it]

How many people have used the USB Contour already?  What are your thoughts, are there any bad ones of it yet?

Does anybody know how much it costs, or how much it is going to cost?

Using CGM, First Time in Two Months

Today I have decided to wear my sensor for the first time in almost two months.  I had it charging all night long because it wasn’t even connected to the charger during that 2 months.  I am not even sure if the sensors are still good because I know that they have  short expiration date.  Oh well, I will still use it and see how it goes.  I better change the battery in my pump though because I think it is almost at half life and the sensor kills the battery within a few days, even when it’s a brand new one.  I use the Medtronic CGMS just in case you didn’t remember.

I have a doctor’s appointment coming up in a few weeks and she really wants to see the results from the CGM and she usually only looks at the 2-3 weeks prior, so this is good enough amount of time for her to see, and also for me not to get in trouble again for not doing it.  I also have to get my A1C down next week, which I am not looking forward to because I don’t think that it is going to be a good number.  I have managed my sugars pretty well the last 3 months, but there have just been some random highs here and there that just concern me.

Today is also Monday, so we all know what that means, time to start the diet again.  I had coffee to start off the morning, but didn’t eat anything.  For lunch I am going to have a salad and a little bit of left over pasta.  Tonight for dinner I am going to a banquet for the football league that I coached this year.  There is going to be a lot of different random food because I believe it is a pot luck type style.  My assistant coach and myself are supposed to bring pizza, so I’ll be bringing whatever pizza is on sale, the kids won’t care, they will love it either way.

The afternoon today is also going to consist of more job hunting and submitting resume’s online.  I’m not just looking for a regular 9-5 but also some contract or telecommuting type jobs as well for CSI Marketing Solutions.  I haven’t been real aggressive in looking for clients, but I think it’s about time that I start to do that.

Well have a good week everybody.

Diabetes Inventory Day – Time to Count

Today it is diabetes inventory day.  How often do you do this?  I usually do it once every 3 or 4 months just to see how much I have and how much I will need to re-order.  Typically, I have a lot more infusion sets than I do reservoirs because I don’t change my site everytime I fill a new reservoir.  This is mainly just due to laziness.  Sometimes it is because I just can’t do it.  I may be driving and filling a new reservoir, or at work, or somewhere that I just don’t feel comfortable or have the opportunity to change the infusion set.  When I get a 90 day supply of my pump supplies the reservoirs are usually gone in those 90 days, but the infusion sets usually last about 5-6 months so I always have enough infusions.  Do you re-use your reservoirs at all?  I do from time to time just so I don’t run out.  Right now I don’t have insurance (looking into picking up Cobra), so I doubt I will be buying supplies any time soon.

I plan on counting everything diabetes related that I have.  Test strips, lancets, syringes, pen needles, infusion sets, reservoirs, sensors, IV prep pads, IV dressings, alcohol swabs, and anything else that I have in my diabetes cabinet.  I am hoping that I have enough of everything to last me at least 90 days because most companies will give you insurance after 90 days of employment.  It’s ironic that I worked for a company that helped uninsured people and now I am one of those uninsured.  My main concern is being able to get insulin.  I really need to work on exercising and eating less so that I use less insulin, especially until I am insured again.

I have no excuses anymore for not going to the gym.  I don’t have a job right now, so I have all the time in the world to go, but I am constantly doing things on the internet now.  These are productive things, so I’m not just sitting online all day looking at Twitter, I am trying to get things accomplished and do work on my clients sites.  That’s also one reason that I have decided to do the diabetes inventory later today because I have the time to count each and everything that I own.

I’ll give all the numbers tomorrow.

Hollywood and Diabetes, Another Failure

I saw a few posts over the last few weeks about diabetes and Hollywood and how Hollywood gets diabetes wrong a lot.  Well over the weekend I saw another movie that they just got it wrong, another failure.  This movie was “Panic Room.”  I saw this movie when it first came out years ago and remembered the little girl having some sort of problem that was making her blood sugar go low, but at that time I didn’t know it was her blood sugar or what her problem was.

For those that haven’t seen this movie a mother and daughter are locked inside of a panic room when 3 men are attempting to rob the new house they live in.  The little girl has diabetes and her blood sugar is dropping throughout the whole movie.  Good thought and plot for a movie, but not the best at the details.

The first thing that bugged me was when they first moved in they were eating dinner downstairs and the girl with diabetes was drinking a regular soda.  I don’t know about you, but I sure don’t enjoy a regular soda for dinner, actually don’t think I have had one for pleasure in about close to 10 years.  How could the director or whoever is in charge of this let this little moment make the cut?  Failure number 1.

Second thing was the CGM, or futuristic CGM she was wearing.  I had heard of this thing and saw it online, the GlucoWatch, but I haven’t seen anybody actually wear it.  Basically it was just a watch she was wearing that was giving her blood sugar readings to her.  We all know that it’s not that easy.  How about showing her inserting the sensor into her skin and allowing people to see what actually goes on behind the scenes.  People are already ignorant to diabetes and don’t know what we go through on a daily basis, so why give them the thought that, all you have to do is look at a watch to see what your blood sugar is?  Failure # 2.

Using diabetes in a movie plot can be a great tool and make the movie extremely interesting, but only if it is done in the right way.  Add some educational aspects to it.  Explain how this person’s diabetes is going to affect them later on in the movie, give hints, just like you do with the rest of the plot.  I remember seeing a sci-fi movie, (wait I’m sorry, now it’s Sy-Fy) about a year or so ago that involved these alien looking creatures who lived off of sugar.  Without sugar they would die.  Of course there was a group of teenagers that were somehow being attacked by these aliens, but there was one girl in particular they really wanted and nobody knew why.  Well it turns out she was diabetic and had really high blood sugar and they were looking for some insulin so the aliens would stop trying to attack them.  If I remember correctly, the insulin ended up being the killing formula to the aliens.

Although the movie was cheesy, it explained diabetes.  The girl explained to her friends that without insulin her blood sugar will continue to get higher and she will not be able to runaway from the aliens because her body will slowly start to shut down on her and cramp up.  She also explained what the insulin did and how it lowered your blood sugar.  She used the PacMan analogy by saying the insulin eats up the sugar like PacMan.  Maybe not the most scientific explanation, but it works in my book.

So today I dare somebody in Hollywood to make a movie that explains diabetes.  Put a character on tv that explains diabetes, and no not Brett Michaels.  I mean somebody respectful, not washed up, a has been and does diabetes the right way and not keep their blood sugar higher so they can enjoy sex.  Hollywood, you have been challenged!

Somebody make this life of a diabetic a happy one and have a great day.

5 Reasons Why Watching Sports Affects Your Blood Sugar

I wasn’t able to get a post up yesterday because I was having computer issues.  I have a WP app on my IPhone, but there’s no way that I can type that much on that phone.  So it’s Saturday afternoon and I am at the Spanish River Library in Boca Raton with a nice venti bold from Starbucks, with my beautiful girlfriend and getting some work done.  Why am I at the library on a Saturday afternoon when I am no longer in college?  Because football officially begins tonight which means I will have just about zero time left from now until January to do anything at all. Tonight my Virginia Tech Hokies kick off against the Alabama Crimson Tide.  It also means that my diabetes gets tougher.

For those that have been following me for a while probably know that my Hokies and Philadephia Eagles screw with my blood sugars big time.  This year I have a CGM and vow to wear it for every single game so I can monitor how my sugars are going up and down.  At my last Endo visit I was told that I need to track my blood pressure a little more frequently as well since it was 140/80 when I came in and also when I left the visit.  During Eagles games I can feel my heart pounding rapidly on big plays and also at the end of the game.  When they are winning easily it doesn’t really affect me.  More on the Eagles in a further post when their game is coming up.  Right now, it is all about the Hokies.

I am already becoming a little nervous because our star running back is injured and not going to be playing.  Not to mention that we are playing the #5 team in the country.  Grant it, we are #7 in the country, I hate having to play these top teams during the first game of the year every single year.  Let’s get into the diabetes part of it though.  And the reasons for why my sugar goes up.  I have narrowed it down to 5 different reasons why they are all over the place.

# 1 – Passion and Nerves

I am a very passionate and die hard sports fan.  I have been fans of the teams I am fans of pretty much my whole entire life.  I grew up an Eagles fan, became a Hokies fan when I was about 7 or 8, so I feel attached to these teams.  I have also had no luck with my sporting teams winning championships, except the Phillies last year, that I want them to win every single game.  When they lose I become upset and pissed and feel like I am part of the actual team.  Obviously I don’t want to feel pissy but when it is fourth down or there is 2 minutes left in the game and we are down by 6 my blood pressure is shooting through the roof.  My goal this year is to take deep breathes and relax and tell myself that my life is not affected by this game.

# 2 Food Choices

During sports games I am not always able to watch the game at my own home just because of regional TV decisions.  So, at times I must go down to the local sports bar.  While I am there, I may as well make a meal out of it and eat also.  This leads to a game long appetizer of homemade buffalo fried chips from Bru’s Room in Delray Beach, FL.  Second part of the meal is usually a Memphis pulled pork sandwich or some sort of non-healthy meal with some mashed potatoes.  You may have guessed why I named a specific food, because I am extremely superstitious and don’t like to go away from something that I ate when my teams have won while I ate that.  I know, I know, I’m crazy!

# 3- Beer

Beer and football, just makes sense.  Do I really need to go into why the beer intake messes with my blood sugar?  I don’t think that I do, your educator can take care of that.

# 4 Guessing, not Testing

If I go to the sports bar then there is about a 5% chance that I take my meter with me.  During that 5%, there is about a 1% chance that I will test my sugar.  I also am kind of guessing how many carbs are in the food.  Usually what I do is just take a 25 unit max bolus and then eat to cover my insulin.  If I “feel” that I am getting low then I will just eat more of the chips or maybe even order a dessert or something else.  Not a great decision for a diabetic.

# 5 Stress

This one comes during the game which I started to get into during reason #1.  The stress gets even worse after a loss.  I will be stressed out and down in the dumps for a few hours or even the next day until I finally get over it and realize that next week we get another chance to win.  The later into the season the worse the stress gets.

I now know the reasons why sports affect my blood sugars, now it’s time to do something about it and fix these 5 things.  Well I am going to the sports bar tonight even though the game is nationally televised, but I am going to eat healthy.  No beer, no pulled pork.  I will have an un-sweetened iced tea, a cobb salad and maybe a cup of French Onion soup.  Maybe, just maybe I may cheat and get some jalapeno poppers because Amanda also likes them.

Insurance Companies, Did You Just Cringe?

Insurance companies.  How many of you just cringed and made a sour face as soon as you read those first two words?  I know I do.  I don’t know what it is about that set of words. Even when I was younger I didn’t like those words, and I didn’t even know anything about them.  As my uncle always called them, “in-case-stuff-happens companies” as in they are useless unless stuff happens.  Insurance companies brought a whole new level of hatred into my life when I became diabetic.

I didn’t really deal with them the first 2 years of my diabetes because my mom handled just about everything.  I just simply went to the pharmacy to pick up my prescriptions and went to the doctors office and handed them a card.  Once I moved to Florida to finish college, that’s when I had to deal with things myself.

I can remember the first bad experience that I had with them.  I had only 1 vial of insulin left and I pulled it out of the fridge to get it to room temperature about a day or 2 before I would actually use it.  As I was taking it out of the nice little box it comes in, it slipped out of my hands and smashed on the floor and insulin went everywhere.  Not only did I have an insulin smelling floor, (disgusting!) I was now going to be out of insulin within the next few days.

I went over to the student pharmacy the next day and pharmacist said ok it should be here tomorrow.  I get a phone call the next morning to come in and see him.  Guess what?  Insulin is there but the insurance company isn’t covering it so it is going to cost me approximately $500 with the student discount.  Reason for why they won’t cover it you may ask?  Because I have a 90 day supply and we are only on day number 78.  I still remember the day of my 90 day prescription I was on because it made me so pissed.  After I explained to the rep that I will be dead before day 90 comes around, she transferred me to multiple people.  Finally, on a one time basis, they will cover the insulin.

Now, fast forward 3 1/2 years to last week.  I received a new pump and CGM from my diabetes supplier earlier in the year. They are out of network with my insurance so no big deal, that will eat up my out of network deductible.  Well I keep receiving statements in the mail showing that none of my deductible has been met.  This doesn’t make sense to me.  Also, every month I receive a letter telling me that I haven’t sent in the additional information that was requested of me and I must send in something in writing or my claim will be denied.

Huh?  What?  I never received anything in the mail stating I had to send in anything!  Every single time I call they tell me that I just have to submit my appeal in writing.  Well, what the hell am I appealing?  I haven’t received anything telling me I need to appeal!  Long story short they are requesting months of blood sugar logs, CGM reports, A1C reports, etc.  If they just would have told me that months ago I could have had it to them right away.  Hopefully I can get this all straightened out and taken care of.  I don’t need the added stress.

Just another reason I can’t stand insurance companies!

And just another day in the life of a diabetic