Friday, May 13, 2011

My Biggest Supporter

This weeks D-Blog topic for May 11th was, "Your Biggest Supporter," is actually quite fitting since I wanted to write about my mom.  I'll also be translating this post in Spanish since I know it would mean a lot to my mom.  (My Spanish writing still needs improvement but im getting there)

There are truly not enough words or phrases to describe how amazing I think my mom is.  I think if I am half the person she is, then I consider myself blessed.

I asked my mom about the day I was diagnosed with diabetes and how it all took place.   She explained that she noticed I was always really tired, woke up with headaches and had dark shadows under my eyes.  She thought to herself "something is wrong with my child, I can feel it." She remembers one Halloween that I had eaten some candy and that the next day I got really sick, so that just added to the list of things that she noticed was wrong with me.  She took me to the doctor, had all the bloodwork done but the doctor said I was fine. She insisted "are you sure its not anemia or something, somethings wrong with her," but he just blew her off.  My mother followed her instincts and went for a second opinion, even my dad sided with the doctor and said that there was nothing wrong with me, that "you worry too much."

The day my mother took me to see another doctor, she had a dream that she had this big black scorpion on her back, that she couldnt remove it for the life of her, she said it was indication of the cross she was about to bear.

So the bloodwork came back and the doctor asked my mom to take me to the hospital to have some more tests done just to be sure.  Sure enough, I was diagnosed with diabetes, my sugar was about 680.

The endocronoligst that saw me at the hospital was the director of his department, he was leaving for El Salvador that day so he explained to my mom that I was not to leave the hospital until he returned.  My mother stayed by my bedside in the hopsital for 21 days.  This amazing woman would not leave my side.  I cant even imagine how tired she must of been, dealing with the nurses coming in and out of my room every couple of hours to test my sugars, she was sleeping on a chair, since they didnt have  a bed for her.  She did everything she could to make sure I was being taken care of.

As I got older, I was able to learn to take my own shots and do things for myself, this is where I completely lost control of my diabetes since I did not care at all, but every single night for a good 15 years my mom would ask "did you take your shot" I always said yes.

The suffering I put my mom through is unbelieveble, but she always managed to keep a postive attitude.  My mother has a very interesting background and the things she has been through would amaze you, for her to be as level-headed and sane as she is, is beyond me.  I dont know where I would be if I didnt have her support, I love her more than I could ever put into words.  The faith and strength I have for certain situations all come from my mom.  The thought of not having my mom around always brings me to tears.

If it weren't for my mothers persistance on having me checked out, I would not be here today.

The D-OC (Diabetes Online Community) is now a huge part of my life and I thank you all for your wonderful support, so dont you worry, a big thank you post will be coming your way shortly. I just had to express how much my mother means to me, Id give an arm, a leg, an eye, a heart for this woman without hestiation. Be sure to thank anyone who supports you and helps you cope, they deserve it for all the emotional abuse we put them through.

I love you Mom.

No hay realmente bastantes palabras o frases para describir cuanto yo pienso de mi mamá. Pienso si soy la mitad de la persona que ella es, que me considero bendecida.

Le pregunté a mi mamá sobre el día que fui diagnosticado con la Diabetes y como esto ocurrió. Ella explicó que ella notó que yo siempre estaba cansada, me desperté con dolores de cabeza y tenía sombras oscuras bajo mis ojos. Ella pensó "algo tiene mi niña, puedo sentirlo." Ella recuerda un dia de los muertos que yo había comido algún caramelo y que al día siguiente me estaba realmente enferma, de modo que sólo añadido a la lista de cosas que ella notó que estaba mal conmigo. Ella me llevo al doctor, tenía todo los examanes de sangre hecho pero el doctor dijo que estuve bien.  Ella insistió "esta usted seguro, no es anemia o algo?" pero él solo dijo que no. Mi madre siguió sus instintos y fue para una segunda opinión, hasta mi papá penso como el medico y dijo que no había nada incorrecto conmigo, que "usted se preocupa demasiado."
El día que mi madre me llevo para ver a otro doctor, ella tenía un sueño que ella tenía a un Escorpión negro grande en su espalda, que ella que no podia quitarse, ella dijo que esto era la indicación de la cruz que ella iba a cargar. Entonces los resultados de mi examen de sangre volvió y el doctor pidió a mi mamá que me llevara al hospital para tener algunas pruebas más hechas sólo para estar seguro. Bastante seguro, fui diagnosticado con la Diabetes, mi azúcar era aproximadamente 680. El doctor que me vio en el hospital era el director de su departamento, él se iba para El Salvador ese día entonces él explicó a mi mamá que yo no debía irme del hospital hasta que él volviera. Mi madre se quedó por mi lado de la cama en el hopsital durante 21 días. La mujer asombrosa no dejaría mi lado. Ni quiero imaginanarme que cansada ella debio de estar, con las enfermeras entrarando y saliendo de mi cuarto cada poco de horas para tomar mis azúcares, ella dormía en una silla, ya que ellos no tienen una cama para ella. Ella hizo todo que ella podría para asegurarse que yo estaba muy cuidada.
Cuando me hice más viejo, yo era capaz de aprender a tomar mis propios tiros y hacer cosas para mí, este es donde completamente perdí el control de mi diabetes ya que no me preocupé en absoluto, pero cada noche durante unos 15 años buenos mi mamá preguntaría "hizo usted toma su tiro" yo siempre decía sí. El sufrimiento por el que puse a mi mamá es unbelieveble, pero ella siempre lograba guardar una cabeza de postive. Mi madre tiene un fondo muy interesante y las cosas por las que ella ha sido le asombraría, para ella para ser como el nivel encabezado y sano como ella es, es beyone mí. Yo que dont conocen donde yo sería si didnt tengo su apoyo, la amo más que yo podría poner alguna vez en palabras. La fe y fuerza que tengo para ciertas situaciones todos vienen de mi mamá.
EL DOC (Diabetes Comunidad en Línea) es ahora una parte enorme de mi vida y le agradezco todos por su maravilloso apoyo, no se preocupa, su poste de gracias grande esta en camino dentro de poco. Sólo tenia que expresar cuánto amo a mi mamá,  quiere decir, yo daria un brazo, una pierna, un ojo, un corazón para esta mujer sin pensarlo dos veces. Le amo Mamá.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Its Pumpin Time

It was brought to my attention years ago by my endocrinologist, but I just shrugged it off and always decided against it, to be honest I just never cared about my health back then and didn't want the hassle of learning to use a pump or wearing one.  But just like with anything else in life, you get older and realize what you're doing is not the best thing, you wise up, more willing to hear other peoples opinion.          
The real turning point for me happened when a doctor mentioned to me that my sugar was in the 500's, I definitely did not think it was that high. I thought to myself, I need help and I need it fast. First thing I did was call Winthrop University Medical Center and looked for a new endocrinologist, since the one I had previously moved.  
So my appointment was made. I met with the Endocrinologist, I was extremely honest about how I was taking care of myself, or not taking care of myself rather. She was beyond nice and explained all my options thoroughly.  She told me the best option for me would be the pump but that she recommended I try the Novolog pen first to be able to learn how to carb count and see how I liked it.        
I later met with the nurse practitioner (Eileen), who is beyond amazing. She explained that she wanted to get me on a CGM (continuous glucose monitor, it checks your sugar every five minutes) for a few days, to see why my sugar was dropping so low in the middle of the night and whats causing the constant fluctuation in the numbers.  I wore the CGM for about five days.  
When I met with Eileen again, she printed out my sugars  for the last five days and my chart looked horrible! I hated how it looked and I asked: "Well what else can we do to help these numbers look better?"

She brought up the pump and asked if I felt more comfortable with the idea of the pump now. I didn't even have to think twice about it and said yes.  She brought in various pumps to look at and went over them with me. I decided to go with the Animas Ping. I liked the fact that you can control your pump with the same meter you test with and dont have to pull the pump out to adjust your doses, plus it looked cool.  She told me she would call the rep and provide them with some information so they can contact me. I was so excited.       
So Animas called me a day later, I spoke with Ross Patton.  Ross made this process so easy and he had so much patience with me. I provided him with all the insurance information and anything else he needed. The only thing that made this process drawn out was that it took me forever to get blood work done, since the insurance needed a C-peptide test done. Ross always followed up with me (for at least three weeks).  
I finally got the blood work in and Ross said everything had been approved, that my insurance covered 80 percent of the costs, that left me with some payments to make. I explained that I could not provided the 20 percent at the moment, he asked if I could put a down payment of at least 10 percent, I explained that I could not. He stated that as soon as I could make a payment to get in touch with him.
I would say within a minute of hanging up the phone, he called me back. He explained that if I could not make payment now, that there is a possibility of financial help, that If  i could provide him with my last two pay stubs and last tax return, that he would forward the information and we would know if they could help.  
If your household does not bring in more than $77,000 than you are eligible for financial help, they can provide up to $1,100.  Thankfully, everything checked out and I did not have to pay a dime for my pump, Ross had it shipped out the next day. I wish every rep we ran into was as kind and helpful as Ross Patton. Had I felt that I was being treated poorly or trying to be "bought" in some way, I may not have chosen to pump with Animas at all.  I'm so glad this process was so easy.         
So now I start my pumping lessons May 17th, I can't wait! I will be sure to share with you how that goes as well.  I know I was beyond nervous when deciding about the pump, but from everyone I've spoken to, it seems the benefits out weigh the risks.