Friday, February 25, 2011

Rear-ending a septic-sucking truck...

The photo is from from Google images

Last Friday started like any other day.  It was beautiful.  The sun was even shinning.  Well, that’s exactly not like any other day because this is Michigan and you don’t get much sunshine in the winter.  My first stop for the day was the medical clinic at the hospital where I was to have a blood draw for my annual physical (we’ll, it’s been being more like an every other year event).  They drew the blood, filling up a half-dozen vials and I went on my way.   Having fasted for 12 hours, I went out for breakfast and enjoyed corn beef hash with poached eggs, with plenty of hot sauce.  

Life was good, that is until about 3 PM.  My doctor’s nurse called and said that he wanted more me to go back and have more test.  Never a good thing!  I made time to stop back by the clinic and they quickly drew more blood and got me to give them a sample of my urine.  A little after five o’clock, the doctor called me from his cell phone to mine (my doctor is a friend).  He was on his way to watch his son play basketball, but said he wanted to let me know what was going on.  He said that my fasting blood sugar was 317, which was way high and suggesting that for the time being, I go easy on the carbs.  He said he wanted to see the results of the next tests (something about an A1C level) and would go by the office on Saturday morning to check it out.  Friday night, I was good, eating fish and vegetables.  Saturday morning, I was with a group of friends at a buffet and I thought I’d be good by only eating one biscuit with just a little sausage gravy.  Before the meal was over, the doctor was calling for me again.  This time, he insisted I go back right away to have more blood drawn, saying that my A1C levels were off the chart (over 15).  The good news is that everything else within my body seems to be working well.  The extra tests were looking for damage from high blood sugars (and there doesn’t appear to be any).  However, my little splurge with one biscuit and some gravy shot my blood sugar up into the 450s.  My doctor, in consultation with an endocrinologist, put me on long acting (basal) insulin.  He also gave me a diagnostic of type 1 diabetes (that’s right, what’s often referred to as juvenile diabetes, what can I say, I’m young at heart.)  He also said that although he doesn't know why, it is possible that a virus attacked my pancreas. Since then, I’ve gotten well-versed in pricking my finger and reading my blood sugar levels. 

Yesterday, after a long appointment with the endocrinologist, I am on a regular basal/bolus insulin regiment.  This means I get to count up what I’m eating and giving myself shots before meals as well as the evening shot of basal insulin.  I now feel like a full-fledged junkie. 

This week, my blood sugar levels have been dropping and I have been very fatigued.  I haven’t felt much like writing or even reading.  I haven’t been on skis in over a week.  Hopefully, when things are under control, I’ll feel more like resuming regular activity.  When I asked him about activity level, the endocrinologist assured me that shouldn’t be a problem, proudly pointing out that he has had several patients who have run marathons.   I didn’t ask if they’re still alive.

Life is never guaranteed.  Never before has this seemed so true.  But, as I’ve assured those around me, this means there’ll be more cookies and ice cream for them.  On the other hand, a friend with whom I play basketball, who is a sales manager for Hostress, is lamenting the loss of another customer.  


  1. Whoa. Do what the doctor says, and keep us updated.

  2. Good thing you caught it. I've known people who've adjusted their diets and exercise and wound up off insulin, so keep that in front of you as the goal.

    Thoughts and prayers in the meantime.


  3. Oh my - I'm glad they caught that when they did. And really glad you went in for a physical.

  4. Hate to read that you are facing sugar issues. Not a fun thing to deal with. Like R. Sherman said, great you caught it and hopefully you can get it regulated so you can stay off the juice!

  5. Ack.. I'm sorry you have to deal with this out of the blue, but I'm glad it's a controllable disease and that you got on top of it right away. Hang in there.

  6. I am sorry to hear that but glad that they caught it in time. I rembemer the phone call that i got, "the doc" telling me i had cancer, that's just no fun.

    Good luck and i hope you feel better soon!

  7. Ron, will do!

    Randall, I hope I can get off it, but it isn't as likely. Type 2 can be controlled by diet and exercise. With Type 1, you're insulin dependent.

    Lynn, yes, it is good that I went now (it would have been better if I'd called a few months earlier)

    Kontan, I suppose I'm sweeter than folks thought.

    Hilary, good thing there is insulin--the doctor said that before insulin, this would have been a death sentence

    Leontien, thanks for stopping by and for the well wishes. Sorry about your cancer, that's a hard one.

  8. Truly sorry, will it affect your trip.
    Heck, you'd wonder if good living and quality exercise is any use at all.
    'it's genetic' or 'it's a virus' are the fallback positions that the medical community has when they haven't a clue.

  9. Bud...I was first diagnosed in '95 and went from 5 different oral meds per day to insulin. It ain't that bad really but you do have to get that 1aC down as close to 5 as possible, anything below 7 is excellent.

    The only bad part that you have to consider is that insulin is a hormone and it has to be refrigerated. It loses efficacy after a few days above 50 degree's. I use Humalog and Humalog 75/25 both of which I mix in the needle.

    Something happened to your pancreas...I know people who went into a surgery for one thing and came out diabetic.

    The hardest part about this mess is that your doc gives you a sliding scale for how much to shoot and what they rarely say is that it is a guideline, not a hard fast "this is what will work for you every day" guide.

    You're going to have to check you BGL's at least four times a day until you have them consistently around a hundred (definitely under 170 max)you may have to shoot more or less insulin than what the sliding scale recommends. Currently I shoot anywhere from 100-200 units per day depending on how often I eat and what I eat.

    Your going to have to risk going hypoglcemic at times to find the right amount to shoot so keep an orange or some other carb or sugared soda (peanut butter is very good because it brings your levels up slowly)near at hand.

    Learn to recognize the indicators for to low Blood Glucose Levels (sweating, shaking, nausea) then eat.

    I started shooting myself in 2000 and for the past 10 years my 1aC has not been above 7 with about 6.3 being normal and I rarely spike above 350 and that only when I get too lazy to shoot soon before or after I eat.

    The good thing is you caught it before it did any permanent damage to your kidneys and liver...seriously it isn't all that bad and don't start thinking that all your favorite foods are off the OCCASIONAL indulgence is not going to hurt you.

    Just get that hot mess under control by controlling it and not letting it control you.

  10. Just follow the doctor's orders and you are going to be fine!

    And I don't see any reason, why you shouldn't run a marathon?!

    You take care!

  11. Oh my, i certainly hope you follow all of the doctor's orders....especially if you plan on this backroads and way off the beaten path tour coming want to be on top of your game and here writing and reading and enjoying our wonderful world and for this photo of the man and truck who loves a stinking business, oh yeah he's coming back to our house and to meet him will be a digger man! This winter has really caused havoc in so many ways! take care and no more of that sausage gravy and biscuts, it did a total number on my uncle too, who devoured way too much of it for way too long!!!!!!

  12. Sorry to hear the news but glad to hear it isn't something more serious. I work with several Type 1 diabetics who must give themselves shots before meals. One is a welder who lifts massive amounts of iron on a daily basis and could pound me into the dirt with his pinky so I know physical activity is definitely possible. Get better soon and I'll keep you in our prayers down here.

  13. Yeek, man. That's kind of scary. Glad the levels are dropping. Take good care, man.

  14. Well....I'm glad they caught it- but it's still a crappy deal. No- no guarantees in anything. BUT....keep skiing and hiking all do all the things you love. Never lose one minute where you can fill it with the good parts of life..
    Sorry everything seemed to run ya into the back of that smelly truck- but fight back with all you are. You seem like you aren't the type to let it get you down. Take care of you.
    And get out there and go for a ski (or a run;)).
    It does wonders:))

  15. It is always good to hear about sweet things, but not this one. You take care man. God bless.

  16. Sorry to hear the news. Never fun but it was caught in time. Prayers are with you.

  17. SAGE!!!!!!!!!!!!! an A1C around 8 is medication time. At 15 I'm surprised he didn't start you on Insulin! Only your activity levels have kept you out of the Hospital.

    Praying for ya Bro--and I'm equally as guilty!!!

    Peace Bro,


  18. Wait-- I see you ARE on Insulin after re-reading! That is the best most natural course! Great call Bro!


  19. I hope you can still take your trip. Get better soon!

  20. Sage: Do everything you can in the name of health and take good care!

  21. I hope you adjust to the insulin soon--feel better. What a shock that must have been!

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