I went back to the diabetes clinic for my first follow up since going on the pump. I met with the diabetes nurse and nutritionist. They were both very nice and asked me how I was doing, and if I was having a hard time with the pump. I imagined they must have many technologically challenged patients or patients who just have a hard time with change because they seemed very concerned. But I am neither so I told them that it was going well enough. The only uncomfortable incident was when I didn’t change my insertion site for 4 days. The spot got sore and it was a little painful.
The truth is that so far I’m doing fine. I would say great, but I have a hard time considering a device attached to my body great. I do feel, however, that the trade – shots for pump – has been a good one. I know it is too early for a final verdict but I really enjoy not jabbing myself with a syringe 4-10 times a day. Yesterday I checked my blood sugar in the afternoon to see where I was a few hours after eating. I was 116. In the MDI world that would be perfect but with my pump I corrected it with a tiny amount of insulin which is not administrable with an insulin pen.
The nurse downloaded my pump data where I also enter all of my BS readings from my glucometer. It was incredible. I’d had a few lows (one of which was during a run) but not bad ones, and a couple of highs, results of miscalculating the carb content in my meals (in the low 200’s). But as a whole the numbers where amazing. The nurse and nutritionist where amazed and they called me a perfect patient. They were also amazed by the small amounts of insulin I use.
Before I went on the pump I was injecting a total of 30-35 units of insulin a day (14-16 units of Lantus a night and 15-20 units of Apidra during the day). I thought this was a small amount, the result of my caveman diet. Since going on the pump the amounts have dropped significantly and I am taking (on average over the last 2 weeks) 18-19 units a day. Note: I switched from Apdira/Lantus to NovoRapid.
The only problem is that I haven’t gotten used to the feeling of the pump. I’m totally aware of its existence at all times. Coming back from the clinic yesterday I was in a good mood, when I suddenly had that thought most diabetics have had once or twice – “oh no, this will be attached to me for life, for good, it’ll never go away”. I know of course that I can take it off and go back to MDI. But that isn’t much better.
This may all be part of the acceptance process. Like the one I went through (quietly) when I was diagnosed. I am sleeping better with the pump now, although I got a little tangled last night. And may be, it will just take time to get used to and accept the pump as part of me.