Wednesday, February 28, 2007


I am a rule-maker and a list-maker, and am a very big fan of post-it notes. As of Monday, each time I open the pantry, a notecard greets me with a question: "Nic, have you eaten a fruit today"? And on the refrigerator is my exercise checklist, which reads: Curves, run, Curves, aerobics, Curves, cardio.

These two reminders are the result of some serious body image issues, issues that have nothing to do with my body and everything with what I am doing to it. I am no heftier or pudgier than I was one month ago, but in my mind I am. Due to car problems and motivation issues, my Curves attendance has been once a week instead of 3 times a week; due to snow, I am not walking; due to diss and job-related things, my mouth thinks it needs to be chomping all the time. And it is.

I can be quite disciplined when I want to be. I ask, "Nic, do you really want that trail mix?" And if the answer is no, I can usually turn away. But there are times when the "I deserves" or "I needs" trump this discipline, and this has been the case for the past month. What I am not getting in contentment and security I am getting in calories.

But no more. Those calories have been replaced by a lot of Extra Sugar-Free gum. I've been to Curves twice this week, and I ran on the treadmill yesterday. I am still struggling with snacking, and with a string of lows that make calorie consumption necessary, but I am trying to get this under control. I am resolved to do so.

Friday, February 23, 2007

They like me, they really like me!

Well, they don't necessarily like me. They like it. My committee, that is, liked my latest dissertation chapter. Now, the last time I met with them, I cried. In front of them. So I was understandably a little nervous about this most recent meeting, especially because I couldn't tell if my chapter was good or bad. I thought it was good but I was so close to it that I didn't know anymore. Imagine my joy when Prof. R said, "I loved the part where..."

Other things or people that like me (or things about me):

  • My friend SJ! She just drove down from Rochester, MN to see a Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat with handsome hubby and I. We have been friends for 10 years, and she is (and has) the most lovely soul. She is a wonderful listener, and a wonderful friend to the diabetic me. When we travel, she travels with candy for my low blood sugars just in case. She makes me check my sugar. She asks, "is that enough" if she thinks I'm skimping on food. But she does it in such a SJ way that I don't feel harassed or babysat. And it's very few people who manage that.
  • My nieces and nephews. All 12 of 'em.
  • My hubby, who apparently likes me enough to stay married to me even though I am at my most insecure, annoying, neurosis period in our marriage. Ever.
  • My students. One even emailed me to tell me that yesterday's exam was "good." Whatever that means!
  • My blood sugars. I've been in the 80s-170s...except for...

Things that don't like me so much:

  • My insulin pump, or the cannulas, or something. Hence,
  • My blood sugars. After changing out my pump on Wed., I woke up 2 hours later trying not to toss my cookies and at a stunning 501. I of course shot up and changed again, only to be 466 at 7 am. With a purple pee-stick. And then higher. And then 300. And then, after rage bolusing my heart out, 62. Whereupon I rose above 100 only once the whole evening and have in the course of the last 24 hours been on the low end ever since.
  • The scale. I've gained 3 pounds since Feb. 1st. My motivation to get the gym went the way of corded telephones. And my motivation to watch what I eat? Well...

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Snow Day!!!!!!

I am originally from Minnesota. I spent the first 21 years of my life, more or less, in the snow state. Snow does not impact me. It's snowing? Okay, get out the shovel, put a blanket in the car, and keep on trucking. I am, moreover, from Brainerd, which historically does not cancel school with major snow falls. All of the school districts around us would close but not ours. The only time I really appreciated Governor Arne Carlson was when he cancelled school for most of the state because it was snowing and 60 below.

It has been a major adjustment moving to Indiana, where schools shut down based on the threat of snow. As of Monday night, all of the schools had been closed except my University. I did not cancel Tuesday's class because as of midnight Monday, no snow had fallen. By morning, 2 inches had fallen. And it was windy. I got to campus and headed to the coffee shop to find it closed due to "inclement weather." (This did not sit well. I NEEDED MY COFFEE. The weather was wintery, not inclement). In my department, which had exactly four people in it, I was asked "if we were crazy to be there." My response didn't sit well. "I don't think so, but I'm from Minnesota."

By noon, however, we were crazy to be there, as the snow had picked up and the wind was blustery. So I headed home. By noon, the University had cancelled classes for only the fourth time its history. My sour, "Indianans are wimps" softened to, "now this is really snow, and it's a snow day!" We spent the day being goofy--driving to Walmart in my brother-in-law's 4-wheel drive jeep, building snow forts, drinking cocoa with marshmallows, watching Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure. Today is also a snow day. Yay for wimpy Indianans!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Raging Bolus

My tale begins at 3 am, when I awoke with a start. Usually when I do that, it means my blood sugar is out-of-control. And sure 'nough, it was. It was a nutty 423. Bleary-eyed, I did a shot of 3 units and went back to bed. At 9 am, I was an equally-out-of control 363. Clearly, my pump was malfunctioning--I had had that suspicion last night. But I was still sleepy. So I did a shot of four units and crawled back in bed. When I changed my pump, there were little globules of blood and fat in the cannula, so I think insulin simply wasn't able to deliver and absorb. That makes sense. What doesn't make since is that gazillions of units later, I am still high. I limited my breakfast to a piece of toast and did a more-than-enough bolus of 6 units. Two hours later? In the 300s. Another shot. After a nap, because it was all I was up for, I had come down to a more respectable 253 and gave into my stomach's demands for lunch. Again, I did plenty of insulin and then I braved the cold (with my loving, sacrificial husband) to try to walk off the high and the lingering high blood sugar idiocy. I am now 319.

This sucks. As does being unable to figure out if the problem is: insulin (likely, I'm room-templing a new bottle now); bad sets; a virus...the same old, same old. And as I try to play detective, I am waiting, waiting for the inevitable rage bolus low to catch up with me.

Monday, February 05, 2007


I am celebrating. 68 pages later and chapter 4 is finished! A dissertation chapter should be 50 pages so that when the diss is published it will be a 25-page chapter. Any longer is the kiss of death (at least for me, of short attention span fame). So, my chapter is at least 18 pages too long, but it is done and I am happy.

I am also happy because the Trumpeter Malbec wine that has been in my pantry for 3 months has now been consumed. I bought it in October and the deal was that I couldn't drink it until the chapter was finished. Handsome Hubby was a strict enforcer. And tonight we enjoyed it together, and I enhanced it with some espresso-flavored Ghiradelli.

In other news...nothing has changed in the diabetes front. But things have changed in the insurance front. My husband lost his job last week. They are closing his office. And while I am insured under my graduate student insurance, it only covers doctors' visits to the student health center. No endo, no Minimed. Handsome Hubby has a couple of job leads, but nothing solid. And my car decided to freeze up today (literally--it's cold!) and had to be towed home. When it rains, it pours.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Sometimes I like Doctors

Usually I don't. Usually I need help with somethin--usually my basals or boluses--and they are unable to help me. And this inability (I usually take it as unwillingness, though this is wrong) makes me suspicious, and so I don't call for help when I need it. But my awful blood sugars prompted me to rethink my suspicions (spelling? too tired...) The thing is, despite my attempts to get my basals under control I have been skyrocketing after breakfast and then plummeting...right as I am teaching my English students. Then I have been yo-yoing the whole day, for a fabulous 38-41 finale at about 1 am. This is not acceptable.

My doctor agreed. And yesterday at my endo appointment she took my pump in her hands and redid all of my basals. She did the math on the spot (it takes me forever), adjusted the times and the rates, and...I am in love with her! Number of highs today: none. Number of lows: none. I went up to 194 after breakfast, which after the 300s is great by me.

All of my highs from the last two months are evident in my A1C. It was (as I said it would be!) 6.8. I'm happy when I'm between 6 and 7, but since I've been 6.4 for 6 months I'm a little disappointmed. Although the 6.4s were because I had a good string of I guess it balances out.