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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I'll Take That A1c!!!

This morning I had my quarterly endo appointment.  But today didn't start out very optimistic and sunny, quite the opposite.  Severe thunderstorms were entering our region and causing power outages across the area.  It's really freaky to be driving on the road and watching the street lights go out!

Anywho.

I get to the parking garage, check my blood sugar (118 mg/dL), and head to the office armed with my Dexcom printouts.  I only wait 30 minutes (woo!) before my name was called.  The nurse takes my weight (I didn't ask her if it had gone down since last time, I didn't wanna know), my blood pressure (122/86), and my blood sugar (118 mg/dL, yay for accuracy!) and A1c draw.  I've written before that it is torture to get my A1c taken at my doctor's because I have the pleasure of watching the timer inch its way down from 5 minutes to 0:00.  My heart felt like it was about to jump out of my chest before I saw the number.

I'll take that. 

"Good job," the nurse said.  "The doctor will be in shortly."  I immediately texted Trey the number, to which he responded, "woohoo!"

My doctor walked in and excitedly said, "Hi, Holly!"  He was obviously pleased with my decrease in my A1c from 6.8% back in February.  He asked me how I thought my blood sugars were doing, and I said I was pleased with them but just trying to avoid the lows with working out.  We also discussed the possibility of me getting pregnant, and my doctor made the point that even though I'm doing well with my control now, that it's much easier to be in control when you're doing it for someone else.  That is so true!  There have been plenty of times where I SWAGed for a piece of cake or didn't wait 30 minutes after taking a bolus to eat because I didn't care about the consequences.  If I were pregnant at those times, I guarantee that I would think twice about SWAGing for the key lime pie.

I was also given a copy of my lab work that I had done last week, and this is the first time I've ever been given a copy of the results.  It's quite extensive, but my doctor said my results were stellar.  I can spend time deciphering all the codes later.  He scheduled my next appointment and left.  I grabbed my mounds of paperwork (Dexcom graphs, pump downloads, and lab work results) and made my way to the receptionist to checkout.

I started getting a little choked up thinking about all the hard work I've done, the hope of a successful pregnancy, and the peace that my body is perfectly healthy despite having a chronic illness. I celebrated my success my grabbing a caramel macchiato on the way to work.

Now, about that coffee addiction . . .

Monday, June 20, 2011

Doctors, Doctors, Everywhere!!!

Life has been insanely busy lately, from my crazy work schedule to keeping up with somewhat of a social life, I've been out of the social media/blogging loop.  Thankfully, my diabetes has somewhat behaved during all of this.  My current 30-day average on my meter has been hovering around 140 mg/dL.  (Thank you, diabetes gods!)  But I have several doctor's appointments coming up that make diabetes hard to ignore. 

Last Friday, I went to have blood drawn to look at all my levels including cholesterol, lipids, and (of course) A1c.  And my pathetically small veins made it hard for the nurse to get enough blood in the vial at first.  She had to squeeze my upper arm to make enough come out.  So this lead to having to keep the needle in my arm for half a second longer than I wanted it to.  Next time, I'll just take a jog up and down the hall to get my blood pumping. 

This weekend, I downloaded my latest Dexcom graphs, and it looks like my A1c should land around 5.8 (median) to 6.1% (mean).  I feel really good about this A1c, but I had similar graphs before my last appointment when my A1c came back at 6.8%.  Most people would probably be happy with this number, but I'd rather be below 6.5% before we get pregnant.  Even though we're not trying right now, I don't want to have to wait on diabetes when we are ready.  I've been trying to keep my A1c in the baby-safe range for the past year, so that all my doctors and company will give us the green light without hesitation. 

The other numbers that I'm not so excited about is my weight and consequent blood pressure.  I was really diligent with my diet and exercise until we were without power a for week due to some local tornadoes.  After that, work got crazy and all I could manage to keep up was a spinning class once a week and playing on my company's softball team.  Diet?!  Pssssht!  What diet?!  I've done more eating out and SWAGing this past month than I care to admit.  So I'm hoping that my physical exercise is enough to give me a normal BP reading, at least.  I've been testing on my own about once a week, and although I've been landing in a normal range, there's always white coat syndrome.  Weight-wise, I'm exactly where I was in February, even though my legs appear a bit toned thanks to spinning.  I'm trying to get back in the groove with exercise AND diet. 

Non-diabetes wise, I also have a dentist's appointment the week following my endo appointment.  And I also need to schedule an appointment with a PCP, and I'm still on the hunt for one I can be comfortable with

Such is the life with diabetes, it seems.  Just as soon as life gets busy enough to make diabetes the background noise in your life, you get an alert on your calendar to go get blood work done for your endocrinologist's appointment the next week.  Then diabetes comes back into full focus, exactly where I hate for it to be. 

At least I have a new toy (re: Nook) to keep me entertained in the waiting area. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Baby Confession

So as I've posted a few times before that Trey and I are preparing our home (namely, my diabetic body) for pregnancy.  I am incredibly excited to be a mom someday and hold my own little son or daughter. 

But.

I have a baby confession I need to make.  When it comes to babies that I consider "mine" (like my nephews), I have no problem holding them and playing with them or their projectile fluids.  But when it's other people's kids, I have this sort of hands-off approach where I'm standing at arms length saying "Awww, how cute!"  I know babies are just little balls of spewing bodily fluids ready to blow at any time, like a volcano--it's a scientific fact.  And I have this issue with having other people's snot, puke, or poop on me.  (I guess I'm weird.)  So when I'm holding someone else's baby through some random pass around, I don't sit there thinking how cute they are.  I keep looking for the signs of an eruption in their facial expressions.  Such was the case the other day at work. 

One of the ladies in our office just had her 3rd daughter (!) and brought her into the office to show off.  I heard all the cooing coming from the hallway, so I walked into her office to see the little angel (at arms length).  But before I knew it, I was handed the 2-month-old infant with a "You wanna hold her?"  Well, I guess so.  (I suppose there's some general assumption that all women old enough to procreate are able to hold babies.  I'd like to start a campaign to squash this assumption.  Who's with me?) "Sure, I'll hold it."  IT!  I called this woman's daughter an "it" like my 2 neutered dogs.  *slaps face* 

So I'm holding this infant, carefully watching her expressions to see if my white sweater was about to become a neutral shade of puke, then she smiled.  Whoa!  Not even with my nephews have I ever held an infant and they smiled in my arms.  For a moment, I forgot my fear of handling other people's DNA and enjoyed holding her.  She opened her eyes for me and I said, "Hi!"  And she gave me this look like, "Wait a minute!  You're not my mommy!", then she started to squirm.  And I gave her back to her mom. 

Everyone has told me, "It's different when it's your own kid."  I sure hope so, because I need to be comfortable with a little ball of flesh oozing bodily fluids from all entries.  But at least half of the fluids will be coming from me.  How beautiful! 

Monday, June 6, 2011

Personal (Under)Wear

The temperatures this week have brought summer ROARING into the southeastern United States.  During these hotter months, I like to wear really comfortable cotton sundresses, complete with a pony tail and flip flops--classy.  However, this presents an issue when it comes to wearing my pump Arnold.  I know some of my gal pal diabetics like to wear a thigh holsters or some Spanx-type shorts with a pump pocket.  To me, both of those options add an extra piece of clothing that I can't handle with the heat and sweat.  So what's a girl to do?

Enter hiphugger underwear!  I'm a rather hippy girl to begin with (and not in the "groovy" kind of way, but in the I've got a nice set of "birthin' hips" as my mom would say), so underwear choice is a very important decision for me.  Not long after I got Arnold, I noticed that the amount of fabric covering my hips was exactly enough to hold Arnold in place in his long-rectangular form with the tube parallel to the floor (have you got the image? because I'm not taking a picture for you).  This set-up is perfect for wearing flowy sundresses because you can't see the pump outline on my hip.  Even though I favor the hiphugger shape in underwear, this also goes for briefs or "granny panties" if you please. 

So why am I sharing this extremely personal information with the entire internet?  Well I just wanted to make sure that every girl sporting a pump is privy to this information because it would be the type of nugget that I would want to know.  Also because this type of information is also great if you don't have PJs that have pockets (which dictates my PJ purchase nowadays).  And if you have another tip for hiding a pump in your everyday wear, then let me know in the comments! 
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DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor, nurse, certified diabetes educator (CDE) or any medical professional of any kind. (But I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express!) Therefore, please do not use any of my postings as medical fact. I am simply a blogger expressing my highs and lows (pun intended) with diabetes. For changes in your medication, exercise regiment, or diet please consult a qualified physician.

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My name is Holly and I live in north Alabama with my hubby, two cats, and a dog.