Thursday, January 31, 2008

Get Hannah, On-Demand.

So that interview I mentioned I might have the other day? I had it this morning. It wasn't terrible, but it really doesn't feel like the right job for me. There were some aspects of it that I enjoyed, but not enough good parts to make the job sound like a good decision. I found that to be a little disappointing, until...

my cell phone rings on the way home from the interview. It's a lady responding to the resume I sent regarding her ad on Craigslist. She sounds very impressed and wants me to come in to interview as soon as possible. I make an appointment for tomorrow (Friday) at 1pm. She says she'll send an email with an address so I can get directions.

I get home and check my email. There is an email from someone else, responding to a job application I submitted. Honestly, it's been long enough since I applied for this position, I forgot I applied in the first place. I have apparently passed their first round of screenings. I need to answer a question and email my response back if I'm still interested, then they'll consider taking me on to the next round of interviews. I oblige.

I make lunch, a big bowl of veggie soup and a few frozen chicken nuggets. I watch Paula Deen and Rachel Ray cook stuff on the Food Network. I call my mom to give her all the job news. I call my doctor's office about a question they had, which turns out was already solved before I called them.

I get another phone call, this one from a woman at a nonprofit I recently applied to, and I speak with her for 10 or 15 minutes. She's doing phone screens for their job applicants, I assume to figure out who's still interested, who's not a psycho, and who's good with all kinds of crazy multi-tasking. I'm a "yes" on all of those things, so we chat for a bit, and she knows to keep me in the running. She seemed pretty confident that I'll get another call. Of course, this means more waiting.

I wonder if I'll get any more phone calls today? Or even tomorrow? Has anyone told you, when looking for a job, that when it rains, it pours? I've been told that, but I didn't really believe it until today. Let's hope for speedy follow-up from the folks who followed up with me this afternoon!

Also, random poll of the day...if you have an insulin pump, where do you put it when you go on a job interview, or even an important meeting where you don't want other people to necessarily notice it? My pump came to my interview this morning tucked away in my bra. I've been on an interview before and had it fall out of my pocket! I want to avoid those situations when I can. Now if only I knew where I packed that Thigh Thing when we moved....

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Going with Your Gut

Do you follow your gut instincts? You know, that general feeling that seems to come from your very heart, telling you what feels right and what to avoid. I think everyone does to some extent. I feel like my gut is attempting to boss me around lately, or maybe even throwing a tantrum.

Maybe when you're trying to find something important, such as a new job, it becomes more difficult to figure out what feelings you have that are worth dissecting, and what feelings can be dismissed as bullshit.

For example, I have a job interview coming up on Thursday. What I read in the job listing and what the HR lady told me about the position seem relatively different. My impression from the ad was that I would be creating marketing material, organizing mailings and events, and doing some administrative support for a recruiting and sales team, like resume editing and setting up sales appointments (which I assume means with already interested clients).

My impression from the HR lady was not as exciting for me. She mentioned making calls for the sales team, but they weren't "necessarily" cold calls. She mentioned some resume editing and "occasional" generation of marketing materials. She seemed very interested in making sure my list of references included someone from the technical staffing firm I used to work for. In reality it includes one person from that company, but it's mostly full of folks from my last job, where I created a ton of creative projects and did another ton of various office tasks.

I miss my old job, especially now that it's so difficult to find one just like it.

Overall, I'm not sure I have a great gut feeling about this, but this is why I decided to go on the interview. There's a chance my interview won't just be with the HR lady, but with someone who would be my supervisor, someone who would have a clearer idea of what their expectations for me are. Right now, I am unimpressed, as I can't tell whether my job description would be Marketing Assistant, or Sales Department Servant. I prefer brochure building over cold calls any day. I'm excited to be someone's assistant so I can learn something, but I don't want to be the assistant who does all the rejection-based dirty work instead of the creative-based helpful work.

I believe in the gut feeling. I just don't know what kind of feeling it's trying to give me.

Blog-Author's Note: Did you see my Sunday post? If not, please go check it out, especially if you have ever used a Cozmo pump. I'm looking for some info! Also, there's a meme, but that's not the important part. Thanks, readers!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!

Offer advice! Answer a meme! Or both...

The choice is yours. I should go to bed, but weird hours are a habit on weekends. I promise I'll be snoozing in the next 20 minutes or so. Soooo...

1. I am considering a Cozmo as my next pump instead of a MiniMed. A lot of the options seem more flexible to me. Do you have a Cozmo? Do you like it?

2. Meme Time!

The rules:

Use one word to describe me … just one single word.

Leave it in my comments.

Then post this message on your blog and see how many strange and interesting things people say about you!

Friday, January 25, 2008

The Appointment.

To set the scene for you, here is a list of objects scattered around Gary's office (fairly organized, of course, they're not just thrown about):

1. Bookshelves with diabetes-related books and other items available for sale, like glucose tabs and boxes of IV Preps.
2. A table covered with various types of glucose meters, insulin pens and insulin pumps to look at and compare firsthand. This was really awesome, as I was able to actually pick up an Omnipod, a Cozmo, an Animas, a Dexcom...all the technology I read about that you usually don't get to see unless it shows up in a box on your doorstep.
3. Pamphlets to take, magazines to read and take, and news clippings on the walls about their patients.

It just seemed like a friendly, inviting kind of office, with pictures everywhere. Gary was the only one in the office today, and I think I was probably the only appointment of the afternoon, so I think I spent something like 2 hours there. We talked about my weight loss goals, my depression, my knowledge of diabetes in general, what kinds of plans I have in place already (not a lot, heh), even a little bit about my carb counting knowledge.

We called Medtronic to find out when my pump warranty expires. Turns out it was last week. Oops, way to drop the ball and not send me a letter, MiniMed. Gary mentioned that I might not be on the best pump for my insulin needs, so we compared stats on insulin pumps. I may get something other than a MiniMed next pump around. I'll keep you posted. He suggested a mail-order pharmacy that specializes in diabetes supplies that might work with my insurance, instead of having to beg my own insurance for prescriptions in the correct amounts.

We just generally worked on what my goals are and what I've done in the past. We're going to test my basals and try to get them straightened out. Then we'll work with the boluses and try to get them straightened out. Then he's going to teach me more about all the specialized stuff--temp basals, dual-wave boluses, etc.--that I'm not all that familiar with. On my next visit to the office, I meet with the nutritionist who specializes in weight management.

I'm so happy. I feel such a relief to know that I finally have a medical team who is 100% on my side and seems 100% supportive. Having someone who knows what you're going through makes all the difference in the world. Gary wears a Deltec Cozmo pump and had a DexCom on today, so we were checking out his DexCom profile.

When mentioning my GP's reaction to my A1C of 8.5, he made a comment like so many of us on the OC already did: if you don't have diabetes, it's easy to come down hard on someone for their numbers, maybe even harder than is necessary. We also discussed how we only change lancets about once a month. Once, he asked a patient who'd had diabetes for 5 years how often he changed his lancet, and the patient answered, "You can change them?"

It was a great visit, and I'm actually looking forward to looking at all of my numbers.

I also scored some diabetes swag...some QuickSets to experiment with, since I've been using SofSets and I think I'd prefer the others, a One Touch Ultra 2 so I can upload my numbers onto their office computer (I've been using an UltraMini without a data port, and he said I might prefer the design of this one to the UltraSmart I have), and some books on carb counting, which I had to buy, but are totally worth it.

All in all, it was a great visit, and a good day. Tonight I'm off to a poetry slam, but I'm not sure if I'm going to compete or not. Sometimes I get tired of doing all the old poems, and I haven't memorized any of the new ones. Either way, I'll get to see some friends and some new faces. What a great way to kick off the weekend! I hope your weekend is a good one, blog-reading friends. Happy Friday!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

2 Kinds of Crashes

Crash 1: The car.

I rear-ended the nicest old guy on the way home from a job interview the other day. I'm fine, he was fine, and our cars, for the most part, are fine and completely driveable. He was an older guy, in his 70's, and I knew things weren't going to be too rough when I asked if he was all right, and he responded, "The better question is, are you all right?" He was sweet and reassuring, even though I hit his nice-looking, most-likely-new car. As for my car, the front bumper cover is kind of scraped-up looking and has some holes where the front license plate holder was popped out. The garage says it'll be $650 to replace it, and I've got a $500 deductible on my insurance. Of course, that's $500 that's a little difficult to come up with right now. His Cadillac had even less damage, just a bit of a scrape on his rear bumper cover. It was a bit nerve-wracking, of course, but this guy's genuine niceness and humor was very calming, and I ended up driving off smiling.

I realize later that I'm lucky I rear-ended his car and not some big SUV. My front bumper hit the middle of his rear bumper, but had I run into a car that was much further off the ground, like a Hummer or one of those big Toyotas that people are driving these days, I might have caught my hood and really screwed things up.

Crash 2: The blood sugar.

Last night was a lot of fun. Matt and I went to our friend Mike's to play Spades, as we often do these days. It was a fun night of drinking and smack-talking, as usual. However, Mike didn't have any diet Coke, which is what I usually drink when I'm over there. I'll usually have one with rum or vanilla vodka, and one without anything. I still wanted to have a drink, so Mike busted out his bottle of meade. Matt and I had never had it before, so it seemed like it would be fun to try it. I liked it--kind of white wine-y with a honey aftertaste. Yes, I said honey. You can probably guess where this is going. Before bed, my glucose level is high, 286, so I correct. I should probably stick with the old standard beverages.

Matt gets up to get ready for work at 6am. I feel strange, and check again. 71. I chomp on 3 glucose tabs, thinking 4 will probably raise things a little too much. I go back to sleep. I wake up at 11. (Yes, having no job has its perks sometimes.) I feel strange, and check again. 71. Again.

Isn't it always weird when you get 2 identical readings in a row, hours apart, especially after you treat a low?

Off to Integrated Diabetes tomorrow! I can't wait to report back to all of you about it.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Hair-y Situation

So last week, I braved some snow showers to go to the doctor's office for some antibiotics, then I went and got my hair cut. I promised to show you the cuteness, so here it is, in low-res camera phone style.
Contrary to what the cheapo camera would have you think, my skin is not lavender. Anyway, I feel that my hair is cute and professional enough that it might get me closer to a new job. Who knows?

Interview tomorrow at an agency who might have an interesting couple of jobs for me. Also saw a great one online today. It's early in the week. Hopes are high.

Countdown to the appointment at Gary's office: 4 days! Honestly, I'm more excited than nervous about it. I'm more nervous that I'll oversleep for this job thing tomorrow.

Also, I am reading the book Sweet Invisible Body by Lisa Roney, because Kerri has recommended it on her blog numerous times. I'm liking it so far! Other book recommendations are welcomed...I finally got my library card.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Thank You, Diabetes OC!

Really, you guys are the best. Thank you for all your supportive comments, pleasant feedback, and general hilarity on my last post. It's great to know I've got so many terrific friends out there who I've never even met in person.

(Hey, one of these days, some of that might change. Not the terrific, just the meeting part.)

It's snowing outside, and while the roads are turning to a slushy mess, the trees are gorgeous. I also ponyed up the cash today for a proper haircut, hopefully resulting in a more polished image when I got to job interviews. I'm not sure what to call it exactly, but I think it's one of the better haircuts I've had. I might post some pics later once I find some batteries for the camera.

Tomorrow, if the roads are clear, I think my mission will be to find something resembling a suit. I think if I'm as professional as possible when I show up for job interviews, I won't have to worry that that's the reason nobody calls me back. However, being that it's January, the jobs are popping up pretty regularly. I just have to hang in there.

One week 'til I see Gary. Went to the GP today to see about my lingering cough and congestion, and big surprise, it's a sinus infection. Matt has one too--like husband, like wife, I guess. She asked if I'd made an endo appointment yet. I told her when it was, and also told her I'd be seeing a Diabetes Educator. She seemed pleased. Mission accomplished, perhaps?

I'm just trying to hang in there and have fun in my free time. Once again, thanks for being great readers and friends. Catch you next entry.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Readers Being Judgemental Are NOT Encouraged

(made with The Cheeseburger Factory LOLBuilder at

This comment was left on one of my most recent entries, titled "'Very Poor' Diabetes Control":

"I am a type 1. listen, here are some cold, hard facts. if you have an a1c higher than 5.5 you should be freaked out and doing everything you can to get it to 5.5 or lower. no excuses, no complaining 'the doctors is reading you the riot act'....stop kidding yourself. get your a1c low and make it a life choice to keep it there. end of story case closed. use novolog and levemir, or a pump. and, if you have a BMI > 30 you are just fooling yourself, no one else."

It is not my position to alienate any readers I may have. I feel that it is almost regrettable that this comment made me very angry, because this is someone's opinion. I value all kinds of opinions, I really do. But Anonymous, your comment has made my blood boil a bit. Many of us come to the Diabetes OC to find support and friendship, to find out that we're not alone, and to see that not everyone with diabetes who is leading a normal life is a perfect patient. If you have Type 1, then you must know that when things aren't getting under control the way you want them to be, or the way they're supposed to be, it can be incredibly hurtful and frustrating.

I found your comment to be hurtful and frustrating as well. Here, let me break it down:

if you have an a1c higher than 5.5 you should be freaked out and doing everything you can to get it to 5.5 or lower. no excuses, no complaining 'the doctors is reading you the riot act'....

The only reason I was complaining about being read the riot act in that entry is because I knew the bad news was coming. Also, I had been sick, and I would expect a doctor to realize that because I was just getting over an infection, my glucose levels were terrible. Now, if you know your numbers are less than great, if you know your lab work is going to disappoint you, doesn't it almost add insult to injury when your doctor tells you how horribly you've been doing? If my doctor would have listened to me in the first place, when I said I'd been sick and things weren't going so well, I could have gotten a phone message saying something like, "It's just as we thought...your numbers are crappy, and we've got to work on improving them." If we both know that I've been a bad, bad naughty diabetic, I don't need to hear you telling me, "You've been a bad, bad naughty diabetic. Shame on you."

You're a doctor. You're supposed to help me, so offer me some help. My GP did offer help, in the form of telling me again to make an appointment with an endocrinologist, which I did. I also made an appointment with a diabetes educator's office.

As for not resting until my A1C is under 5.5, well, according to this article from the JDRF, as someone with diabetes, my target A1C should be under 7.0. You know what? I'd love to have an A1C of 5.5 or less, but right now I'd settle for the freakin' 7.

stop kidding yourself. get your a1c low and make it a life choice to keep it there. end of story case closed.

I'm not kidding myself at all. This is why I'm going to see Gary Scheiner. This is why I made an appointment with a new endo. This is why I keep this blog, and why I read the blogs of others. I want to be healthier. I want my A1C to be fantastic. But you know what? I'm a sensitive person who wants all of my healthcare providers to understand my needs. I want them to remember I'm a person coping with chronic illness every day of my life, and simply telling me I'm doing a bad job is not exactly a method of motivation for me. Thus, an angry entry came about.

use novolog and levemir, or a pump. and, if you have a BMI > 30 you are just fooling yourself, no one else.

I have a pump. I've had a pump for nearly 7 years. Just getting a pump doesn't solve all your problems or fix your A1C. And maybe if you've read more than one of my blog entries, you'd know some of this stuff.

And, excuse me? Fooling myself? I know I'm overweight, so who in the hell am I trying to fool, and with what? Contrary to some people's beliefs, being fat doesn't ruin your life. My BMI is over 30, and I'm not trying to kid anyone about it. I feel the BMI system has its flaws, but I'm aware that I should lose some weight.

And weight loss would be a hell of a lot simpler had I not developed insulin resistance when I was 2 dress sizes smaller. It's a fact of life.

And so, dear obnoxious Anonymous commenter, and you too, D-Blogosphere, listen as I say what I've said many times before:

I am not a medical expert. I am not a model patient with Diabetes. I am a person living with this disease, and I am taking it a lot more seriously than I used to. I am making improvements, and looking for friends and support. Any advice I dish out is either related to what seem to be common sentiments on the DiabetesOC or entirely personal opinions. I am not encouraging anyone to take care of their diabetes in the exact same methods that I use, because yeah, they're definitely lacking sometimes. I am not perfect.

Dorkabetic is not an actual model for how to manage your diabetes. It's a blog about how I live with it, and about the changes I'm making to my life so I can finally take full responsibility for myself. And that's all I have to say.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

What's a Sussy?

I have asked this question in recent days, but it turns out that a sussy is basically a surprise package that someone mails to you for no good reason at all.

So Amylia and Beth of the DiabetesOC have decided to start the new year off with a Sussy Circle! Do you want to brighten the day of somebody out there who has been touched by diabetes? If you are a member of the Diabetes365 group or if you've got a D-Blog, and you'd like to find out for yourself what the heck a sussy is, you can join the circle too!

Go check out this entry on Amylia's blog, Amazing Grace, for more info. I'm signing up, because who doesn't like real, genuine mail?

In other news, I'm still somewhat sick, but starting to feel better. I had big plans to go out to the library today since my card finally arrived in the mail, but I'm enjoying some relaxing, lazy downtime instead. The library will be open until 9, so there's still time to make it out.

I have not yet fulfilled my goal of more exercise in the New Year because of this blasted virus, but can you blame me for not wanting my workout to result in more coughing fits than health benefits? Before this came on, it was the UTI pain. I want to be healthy so I can go work out, dammit. They're calling me to ask where I've been!

However, I made an appointment with Gary Scheiner. In two weeks, I hope that maybe I can start turning over that "new leaf" that everyone is so excited about these days. Maybe I am closer to achieving some of my goals than I realized.

I take it one day at a time. I'm still waiting to hear about some job stuff, as usual. What a tricky time of year to get anything accomplished! I'm wondering if I'm lucky that I made it to Aldi yesterday for a few groceries.

Anybody else find their motivation is in hibernation?

Tuesday, January 8, 2008


I wish I didn't feel so crappy, because maybe then I'd have more to blog about. This cold is turning into a MAJOR cold. What was just a cough seems to be growing, and today I think I'll be running out for some Sudafed.

(Think of your favorite sick/whiny noise, and then imagine that I'm making it here. Merrrrgh.)

NyQuil gives me weird dreams. I've had one every night since I've been taking it. The dream from two nights ago was fairly vivid, and easy to translate into a meaning. I was getting married, but I wasn't allowed to take off the other dresses that I was wearing in order to put on my gown. So I had a job interview-appropriate dress on, a teal bridesmaid gown over that, and then I was supposed to put my wedding dress on over that whole mess.

Then later in the dream, while still wearing all these dresses, I needed to go to a party at someone's house. My shoes had disappeared, so my mom tells me where to find other ones that are supposed to belong to me. Many of them are the same color combination, but they are different styles or different sizes. I am unable to find a pair that fits or that works right together. I think I end up wearing a pair of sneakers that are too big for me and don't match my outfit at all.

It all seems to mean that I'm not sure who I am or what role I'm supposed to fill. I think my dream was trying to tell me that I am definitely anxious about finding a new job, because I'm not 100% sure what that job should be. Am I a career girl? Am I a wife? Will I be able to make all of these things work together?

Sometimes I wonder.

Thanks, NyQuil, for showing me the way. Off to get some more medicine and definitely some tea. Hope you're healthy out there in blog-land.

Friday, January 4, 2008

"Very Poor" Diabetes Control

I awoke this morning to a message from my primary care doc. The tests showed no infection, but a blood glucose level of 345 and an A1C of 8.5. She informs me that 8.5 is "very poor glucose control", and advises me to make an appointment with an endocrinologist.

Since I was just getting out of bed and grumpy, I momentarily questioned whether I should keep this woman as a doctor. I know 8.5 is not a good number by any standards, but it's actually better than what I was expecting. At my worst, sometime in late high school or early college, my A1C was once 10.5 or something like that, maybe even 11. (Snarky Author's Note: 11 is good, if you're Spinal Tap. Not so much if you have diabetes.)

I breathed for a moment, and realized of all the diabetics out there, it's been proven that many of them have no interest in getting their disease under control. I think it must be standard doctor's rigamarole to make you feel as terrible as possible for whatever your A1C level turns out to be so you'll be interested in seeking help. My primary care doc had pretty much talked to me for the first time the other day, so I can't expect her to know anything about me. My medical records from my last primary doc haven't been sent over yet.

I think I've been lucky in the past with general doctors. My doc in Delaware worked right next door to Nancy the NP from the Diabetes Center. Their reception offices were actually connected! Way back, when I was still living in Williamsport, my endo was the only one in town, and my doctor was a pediatrician who had previously employed my grandmother as a nurse, so I was already known there...haha, since birth, actually.

For now, I shouldn't hold it against my regular doc for sounding so scolding. I also did exactly what she told me, which was to make an appointment with the endocrinologist we talked about. That won't be until February 20, but in another show of trying to make up for people who have no interest in controlling their diabetes, this new endo's office requires a $75 deposit for the first appointment. If you show up for the appointment, they refund your money. Actually, I think they'll just hold the check and give it to you when you show up. If you're a no-show, it'll cost you $75. I had never heard of such a practice before. I wondered if this endo was going to be worth seeing, but then...

I got an email from Gary Scheiner. After the other day's self-rallying-cry/mopefest, I realized that Gary, one hell of a highly-respected CDE who definitely knows what it's like to be Type 1, is practically around the corner from me. His Integrated Diabetes Services office is probably only half an hour or so away from here. Geez, I thought, if I'll drive half an hour to go to a poetry slam, I can certainly drive half an hour to make an investment in my health with somebody who knows what they're doing. I had asked him some questions, which he answered, and then he made a recommendation for an endo who's nearby.

Amazingly, this is the same endo I already made an appointment with at the request of my general doc. Maybe my doc is not so bad after all. And once I show her that I'm serious about making a better effort this year, I won't get those scolding looks at my next office visit.

I've got a lot of plans for the day, but I know if I don't call the Integrated Diabetes office today, I'll definitely do it on Monday.

I got a flu shot the other day as well, and it's definitely given me a cold. Lots of coughing. Had I known this wasn't going to go away, I would have bought cough drops and medicine at Walgreens yesterday when I refilled 4 different medications. Sigh. Cough.

Things are, once again, on the up-swing at least.

Hope you all have a great weekend.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

My Resolve to have Resolutions.

Went to the doc today to see if the UTI is still hanging around. They didn't find anything in my urinalysis except for a lot of glucose in my urine, so they decided to do some bloodwork on me. I am not excited for them to call me back and tell me what my A1C is. I'm sure I'll be read the riot act.

I hate the biggest undocumented complication of diabetes--the blame and pity you put on yourself. The tears that come after every doctor's visit when you are told they're not sure what's wrong with you are never easy. The tears that cloud your eyes as you drive home from your office visit, convinced that your diabetes is ruining your life and it's all your fault for not being able to handle things...well, I still can't cope with them.

I am so sick and tired of always beating myself up over things, and yet sometimes I feel like I don't have a choice. I'm really the only one who can take care of me from day-to-day, and honestly, I am not doing the best job. If you have been reading my blog, don't think that I'm some sort of role model for your own diabetes management. I struggle just as much as any person out there. Sometimes, it feels like even more than that.

I am sick of the struggle, exceedingly tired of this frustration. Sometimes, I also get tired of telling people that I have diabetes because I feel the need to tell them it's not always under the best control. That's when I get the looks, or the horror stories, or the questions about whether my every backache or stomach pain is related to my kidneys.

In the last big set of bloodwork I had done, months ago, my kidneys were perfectly fine. Thanks to everyone else, doctors included, I am sometimes terrified that they're doomed, or that somewhere in my life I will be attacked, viciously, by complications because I don't have things together right now.

I don't want that to happen. I don't want to be in denial about it either, but it's hard to ignore the voices around you that seem to be spelling out an untimely end.

I'm tired of feeling sick. I'm tired of feeling sorry, and I'm definitely tired of this self-pity-party I've been throwing for myself.

This New Year, I want to make a positive change in my life. I want to know that I am doing everything for myself that I possibly can, so that if those pitfalls do ever happen to come, I can actually say (and MEAN!) that I was trying my best. I've cried enough today, and I had more than my share of tears in 2007.

I hope to smile as much as possible in 2008. Starting now. Here's a couple of small goals I've set for myself so far:

1.) Get back in the habit of working out at least 3 days a week.
2.) Get back in the habit of logging on SugarStats.
3.) Eat more fruits and veggies!
4.) Start taking Symlin again. Anybody know if the pen's been released yet?

Sick and tired? I'm sick and tired of it. I'm gonna start small, and hopefully build up to a much better me.

So, who's got good ideas on how to stay motivated? Any recommended reading?