The State of the Pancreas

I saw my endocrinologist last week. That wouldn’t be such big news, except for the fact that I hadn’t been to his office is almost 3 years. Between life changes, insurance switchings and everything that comes with it, I was always seeing my PCP because it worked well for me. But with the recent turn of events, my pancreas being so cranky and all, I decided it was time to go back to Dr. B and I’m so freaking glad I did.

I’ve always liked Dr. B. He’s personable, he cares about his patients’ mental well being above everything else, and he never gives me the talk about how things are so horrible, I better watch out. He may get frustrated—oh, so frustrated… but he never shows it. After all, it’s not his job to make me better… he’s just there to guide  and advise, but the biggest tasks are mine. So after almost 3 years, he was glad I went back, but not so glad that my diabetes is giving me a hard time.

The most important questions I had when I saw Dr. B were:

  • “Did my pancreas check out?”
    To which he replied that no, my pancreas is probably just overwhelmed and being stubborn.
  • “When do I start with rapid acting insulin?”
    To which he replied that it’s better to let the Lantus do its work and see if my pancreas responds.

So that’s what I’ve been doing, giving Lantus a chance. I’m up to 20 units a day, and my numbers—at least my fasting numbers—are getting better every day. I’m guessing I’ll find the “magic” number of units this week. However, my post-meal numbers are never under 200, and I hope they start behaving soon… (I’m low-carbing, dang it!). Based on my log, in two weeks Dr. B will decide if I need rapid acting insulin or add another medication to my metformin since Victoza didn’t quite agree with my stomach.

Whatever Dr. B says, this thing is no joke… it’s no joke when your blood sugar is 466 and you realize all hell got loose, and you want a quick fix. There is not a quick fix, not in the general sense (I don’t bolus). And it requires work, and tears, and a few swear words… and it never, ever ends.

Diabetes and Time Management

time-management-help2013 has been… interesting. A lot of life changes; most of them good (like moving to a new apartment closer to work), some of them sad (my boyfriend lost his mom to cancer). Life has also been extremely busy since the end of February when I got a second job, but that’s a story for another day.

Anyway, between dealing with all the changes and having a crazy work schedule I feel like I’ve been slipping through the cracks with my diabetes management. I don’t feel sick, but I know that when I go to see my endocrinologist this afternoon I won’t get a shiny A1C result like the one I got 3 months ago. Running from place to place I’ve made more than a few unhealthy choices when it comes to eating; thankfully I have a boyfriend who likes to cook healthy, so at least I get to fit some healthy meals in. Still, frustrating because time management and diabetes management seem to be a huge problem for me these days.

So today I find myself afraid of going to  see my endocrinologist. Or maybe it’s just shame  because at the end of the day I feel like I have nothing but excuses for my poor diabetes management, even if people around me tell me they don’t blame me because they’ve never seen someone so busy, and they have no idea of how I do all this. But I’m not going to cancel/reschedule my appointment; it only adds insult  to the injury.

This is the first time in my life when I hardly have any free time—the little I have I spend it trying to get some rest—and I’m here wondering if I’ll ever get the hang of this. How do people manage? All I can say is that I’ve had it easy for a while, and I know I’ll figure it out at some point, but right now I’m not so proud of myself when it comes to taking care of this body.

Suggestions/ideas are welcome. 🙂

Here Comes Prozac

This is the story of a woman with recurrent depression and the bad habit of not taking her Prozac for as long as she should. Anyone who has suffered from clinical depression knows how the cycle goes: you feel like caca, you take the meds, you start to feel normal, you stop taking the meds, you feel like caca and round and round we go. That pretty much sums up my life for the last… I don’t know, 18 years? I talk about my depression as openly as I talk about my diabetes; for me, they are both chronic.

My last bout of depression hit as the days started to become shorter and no one needs to be a rocket scientist to know that winter time doesn’t help much when you deal with any mental issues. My problem is that I ignore things for too long until one day everything explodes (or should I say implode?). My home life starts to suffer, my relationships start to suffer and then I walk like a person with a death wish. It really is a time bomb, especially when I have to take care of my diabetes and that is a 24/7 job; I can’t slack.

So when I saw my endocrinologist yesterday and he saw my latest A1C the first question he asked was “How’s your depression?” and I answered “Rampant!” — I’m grateful that I have a doctor who knows I’m much more than just the test results he gets from the lab. And he was more concerned about giving me a referral to a good psychiatrist than doing any medication adjustments. He knows I will not be able to effectively manage my diabetes if I have this huge black cloud over my head making me feel like all I want to do is die because I’m overwhelmed.

Waking up is the hardest part. I look at the day ahead like a haunted forest and I have no map. But I realize that in order to keep going, I just have to keep going. Kind of like Albert Einstein said, “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” And even though I don’t want to keep going, I have the right people in my life to remind me all this is worth it and things will get better. I have people to keep me in check, I have people to make me laugh, I have people to keep me busy.

And then I have my husband, who understands what I’m going through and doesn’t judge even if I become this ubber-bitch sometimes. A husband that asks me to look at the ornaments on my Christmas tree and reminds me that we’re together, that I have people who love me and that there are people I love.

So if Prozac is what I need, Prozac is what I’ll take.