How I Learned to Take Insulin Shots From ‘Always Sunny’


Did you see that episode of ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’ when Mac decides to “cultivate mass” and ends up with Type 2 Diabetes?   Now please note that I am fully aware that type 2 diabetes doesn’t work that way nor does everyone find shows like ‘Always Sunny’ as funny as I do.   

I was still in my transition as a new person with Type One diabetes when I saw this episode.  Besides all the many ways this episode was inaccurate in how Mac handled life with diabetes as well as mishandling the tools involved with diabetes care, there was a scene that absolutely stood out to me.  

Mac and Dennis were sitting at a high top table at Paddy’s Pub talking about who knows what and eating chimichangas out of a garbage bag.  The table is stacked with food.  Mac with giant chimichanga in hand, without hesitation, jabs an insulin filled syringe into his bulging belly.  He then continues to eat and talk with his friend like nothing happened.  

At this point, I was still closing my eyes and my heart would sink into my tummy as I waited for my glucose number flash across the screen of my meter during checks.  I would also carefully select the spot of my next shot on my abdomen before I slowly stuck the needle in.  Well, duh, that would would hurt.  

What if I did it without hesitation? If Rob McElhenny, the actor who plays Mac, can plunge a syringe in his belly to get a laugh…then I can definitely do it to effing save my own life every day.  

My next scheduled shot was at around 10:00pm that evening.  “I’m gonna do it.” I thought to myself, determined.  I took out my Lanuts pen, screwed on my pen needle, cleaned my injection site, and jabbed.  I jabbed quickly and without hesitation.  Guess what?  It didn’t hurt.  I couldn’t believe it.  It was so quick in that I didn’t even notice the prick.  I pressed the button down, held it there for a few seconds, (I count to 8-it’s my favorite number) and removed it.  Success!

Who knew I would end up learning something about my diabetes care from dark comedy?  Who knew my sense of humor was sicker thank my pancreas and even more twisted than my sweet demeanor gives off? Who knew?  

I’ve been jabbing ever since.  Thanks Mac!  Cheers!


It’s my Diaversary

I felt particularly anxious yesterday and could not quite put my pricked finger on why.  I even tossed and turned until 2:00am before falling asleep and didnt’ know why.  It wasn’t until this morning when I realized the date: June 28th.  It’s my Diaversary, meaning it has been 4 years since I woke up in a hospital bed and was asked, “How long have you known you had diabetes?”  

For months, I was trying to figure out how I was going to celebrate this day.  Life then took over and I shifted my party plans.  I thought I would still want to party it up despite the fact that this day snuck up on me.  It was surprisingly somber for me, though.  Remembering this day 4 years ago took me to a dark, sad, and hopeless place.  I seemed to have been brought back to a place that I have fought so hard to keep behind me.  

That’s when I reached out to my dia-buddies via text message.  Of-course, I true Dia-badass fashion they came through for me.  I received virtual hugs, words of encouragement, and suggestions of our now traditional test strip shot.  Need a visual? Here you go:


After dinner, my husband took the girls swimming and as I watched my beautiful family happily jumping into the pool,  my eyes welled up with tears. “I’m so happy I’m here!!!” I thought to myself.  “I’m delighted I get to watch this and be a part of this, all of this!”  All the reasons why today is a day to celebrate came to me all at once.

  • I get to watch my girls continue to grow into the intelligent, creative, enterprising, and fun young women they are.
  • I get to continue to plan trips and plan a kick ass future with my husband, best friend, and hero.
  • I get to participate in research studies that help diabetes medicine and technologies move forward.
  • I still get to help others with Diabetes or Pre-diabetes by way of this blog, Team Cut the BS’s fundraising efforts, and just by being me.
  • I get to watch more Indycar Races and cheer for Charlie and Conor, so that children with diabetes can follow in their sweet and fast footsteps.
  • And I get the opportunity to experience much, much more!!!

With a new outlook on today, I took my friends up on their suggestions and poured myself a shot for all the insulin shots I’ve taken since June 28, 2012 (A loosely estimated 5,840 shots, probably more.)  Happy Diaversary to me. Cheers.  

Charlie Kimball’s Indycar No Longer Blue and Orange? 

 In anticipation of the 2016 Indycar Season, my husband and I have been watching and following our favorite drivers.  One of my favorite drivers and PWD, Charlie Kimball, has been spotted with a new color scheme during practices and testing the last few weeks in Sonoma, Phoenix, and now St. Petersberg.  Here are a few shots:
 

Tell me that’s not a good looking car. (Photo:Indycar Series)
 
Looks good right, but there’s no more blue and orange. He’s still got Novo Nordisk sponsorship on the car, though. Now it’s got me thinking.  Is it me or does this color scheme look very similar to a newly released long acting insulin that I happen to hear amazing things about?  Amazing as in the potential to only have to take it every other day and a reduction in night time lows.  You tell me:

 
 

Tresiba® looks alot like Charlie’s 2016 Indycar to me. (Photo: NovoNordisk)
 

Wouldn’t it be cool to see a big ol’ Tresiba FlexTouch® on the sidepod of that Indycar?  I’d also love to see a ginormous Tresiba® Lollypop at thier pit box so Charlie knows where to stop!  

Watch Charlie this Sunday March 13th on ABC!  I know I will!

Diabetes Blog Week 2015 Day 4: Got any change???

Diabetes Blog Week 2015 Day 4: Got any change???

I found myself running low on time today, but I seeing as I have recieved a surprising amount of feedback from friends, aquaintances, and people I don’t even know, I thought I’d keep the momentum going.  I even began a post for other blogs that I work on that don’t have anything to do with Diabetes. Yay blogging!

Anyhow, today’s subject is change.

What would I most like to see change about diabetes?  Hmmmm let’s see, besides its exsistence?  I’m gonna go with yesterday’s theme…less pricks in my life, please!

At my last appointment, my endo and I were talking and in her opinion, if checking blood sugars was not so uncomforatable, we’d do it more often.  I agree.  If you asked anyone to choose between checking their blood sugar or their blood pressure, I’m sure more people would pick a tight little hug in the arm than a poke in the finger.  Anyone interested in checking their BS by using a Google Contact Lense? I know I am! 

The same goes for taking insulin.  I am pretty much at a point where I’m fine with MDI (Multiple Daily Injections) over the use of an insulin pump.  But with with the growing popularity of Afrezza® and longer lasting long acting insulins, I’m optimistic that this is only the beinning. I wouldn’t be surprised to see other phamaceutical companies coming out with their own versions non-injecting insulin, maybe to the point of making generic versions, bringing down price. Ok, now I’m just getting too excited…need to “simmer down now.”

For those of your who won’t be blogging this week, I’d still love to hear your thoughts on this, maybe in comments?

    Today’s Prompt:

    Click for the Changes – Thursday 5/14 Link List.

    Today let’s talk about changes, in one of two ways.  Either tell us what you’d most like to see change about diabetes, in any way.  This can be management tools, devices, medications, people’s perceptions, your own feelings – anything at all that you feel could use changing.  OR reflect back on some changes you or your loved one has seen or been through since being diagnosed with diabetes.  Were they expected or did they surprise you?

    What a difference a month makes

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    Today marks a month since I came home from the hospital. The week I spent there took its toll on my physical, mental, and spiritual well being.

    When I got home from the hospital:

  • I could not get up the stairs without my legs cramping up.
  • A lap around the couch was my workout.
  • I couldn’t get anything for myself and had to rely on my family to even get me water.
  • I was taking between 24 and 39 units of my fast-acting insulin and 25 units of my slow-acting insulin a day.
  • I could not watch television without noticing that every commercial was a commercial for food I was gonna miss.
  • I just remember feeling frustrated, sad, angry, weak, and lost.
  • Then I remember thinking to myself my first week home:

    “Well, this didn’t kill me, so I must be getting stronger.”

    That’s it. Its time to stop feeIng sorry for myself. It’s time to start making myself stronger. I knew I was still recovering from gallbladder removal surgery so I knew my limitations. I began to challenge myself by adding more laps around the couch. Then I pushed myself to go up and down the stairs a second and a third time. I began to take walks around my block. Read up on diabetic eating and the reasons for my dietary needs.

    Now that it’s been a month, I can celebrate the following:

  • I made my goal of getting up and down the stairs 54 times in one day. (once for each card in a deck of cards-including the jokers-and yes, I physically brought a card upstairs each time.)
  • I can walk on the treadmill for 30 minutes at a time at an incline.
  • I’ve taken up carrying a pedometer. I haven’t been able to do 10,000 steps in a day yet but I’m working on it.
  • I now take about 12 to 15 units of fast-acting insulin a day and only 10 units of slow acting insulin a day. Writing this just made me realize that my doses have been cut by more than half!
  • I’ve gotten back to making the meals for my family, something I take great pride in.
  • I started this blog in the hopes of helping others as well as myself.
  • The blog has a section in which I will try to continue to be thankful daily.
  • I’m very hopeful and happy to be living with diabetes instead of feeling as though I’m dying of it.
  • I’ve got a lot to be thankful for this last month and I now celebrate every day.

    Don’t forget to “cut the B.S.!”

    Last day on the vial!

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    I’m so excited! Today is my last day of using the old school vial and syringe needles. As of tomorrow, I switch over to the pen! Above is a picture of my fast acting insulin, the Novolog FlexPen which is a pre-filled syringe. It is so much easier to carry in my purse as opposed to bringing a vial and syringe or even prefilling the syringe ahead of time. The pen needles seem thinner so I don’t feel them as much. It could be that looking at a regular old school needle just messes with my mind a bit. It just looks like it will hurt and so it does. I barely even feel the pen. Tip to newbies: it helps to exhale when you stick in the needle.

    Maybe I’m also excited about switching to the pen because the Novolog FlexPen’s spokesperson is Charlie Kimball who is an Izod Indycar Series racecar driver who happens to be a diabetic. FYI, I’m a huge fan of his as well as the series. Needless to say I will be blogging more about him soon. Go Charlie!!!