Sunday, July 31, 2011


I just have to post about how disorganized our government can be. Vince just got a jury duty notice. Do they not check the disability records before sending these out? Now, it is up to us to call and explain that he cannot attend because he is disabled? I sure hope that is an excusable reason! This is crazy! Okay, just had to get that out :)

Update: I called the jury office and they said all they need to see is Vince's SSDI award letter and he will be excused. Whew!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

I just sit in silence...

I sit out back of Vince's nephews new house as we celebrate with a housewarming party. It's 95 degrees out but there is a lot of trees of shade and a breeze and it was so peaceful. What a beautiful house and private yard to BBQ in! As Vince and I talk with one of his brothers, and a couple that stopped by from across the street, the pain starts, full force. Vince cringes in pain as I just sit there, staring at the ground with a blank look on my face. His brother asks him if he is okay and Vince just nods. I take a glance at the clock on my phone to see if he is due for a pain pill, and he is. Just as I am about to ask him if he wants some medicine, he asks me for his black bag. I am already out of my chair, and on the way to the car to retrieve it. Inside it, he carries his glucose meter and test strips, glucose tablets, alcohol wipes, and his pain medicine. I hand it to him and he takes a pill. The conversation continues amongst him and I and the others. Later in the evening as we talk about the day, the episode came up. It made me think. Why do I just sit in silence when he has an episode in front of people. I suppose it is because I know I can't do anything. What if I look at the others around us and continue talking? Will they wonder why I am not doing anything to help him? Do they realize there is nothing that anyone can do? Or maybe it's because I try not to show how sad it makes me to see him. Maybe by sitting there quietly, staring into space for those few seconds of extreme pain and shocks, I am just trying not to get emotional. I suppose it is all of the above.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Minimed Enlite Sensor

A fellow blogger told me about a new version of the minimed sensor called Enlite. It is supposed to be easier to insert than the current sensor for the minimed CGM. After researching it, it seems that it is not yet available in the US. Here's to hoping that it will come soon! It is inserted at a 90 degree angle instead of the 45 degree angle of the current sensor which would make for easier, more comfortable insertion. I have to say, as much as we LOVE Vince's Minimed Revel pump and sensor, it took some time getting used to the sensor and knowing it's quarks. But it goes without saying, we LOVE it nonetheless!!

Made to the weekend! Whew!

I have been looking forward to my weekends very much so lately. I have not been sleeping too well due to Vince being in pain at night along with blood sugar lows at the same time. I am feeling very overwhelmed and not getting good sleep is not helping the situation. Vince has also been having a hard time with his nausea caused from one of his medications which is making him even more miserable. I finally called the doctor about it and he suggested weaning him down a bit to see if that helps. Of course, this is the one medication, aside from the pain meds, that helps him, so we don’t want to wean him down too much. We have tried cutting his morning dose in half since his nausea is worse during the day and that has helped that past few days, so we will continue that for now.
Vince and I have started seeing a therapist to help each of deal with the stress we are under. I feel like I complain a lot. Well, I have a lot to complain about, but when I vent to others, I feel like I am just complaining and I don’t like that. We have seen the therapist once so far and explained what each of us would like to work on. We will probably only see her once every two weeks or so. I really think this will help Vince as well as myself in all that we are dealing with, but I personally need more venting time than once every two weeks. We had to chuckle a bit at our appointment. When making the appointment, they assumed we wanted to be seen separately and I had to explain that we wanted to be seen together. It wasn’t until we were both in the office that they realized that our marriage wasn’t the issue and what was causing the problems. In fact, despite it all, as I always say, we get along great! We are both just having some trouble dealing with the stress that each of us have on both sides of the situation. Between caring for Vince, working full time, and worrying about our finances, I am just wiped out and tired. I try to take on as much as I can because Vince does all he can just to deal with the excruciating pain day after day. The therapist actually made a point that neuropathic pain is the worst chronic pain you can have. Vince just shook his head and agreed and I thought in my head how horrible this is. I just want it to go away!
I have been trying to take more time for myself although it is not easy for me to want to get away. I feel like I am gone so much during the week and I hate to leave Vince sitting home on the weekends too, just so I can have me time, although I know it is needed. I have been getting my nails done about once a month which takes about an hour or two so I don’t feel too guilty or worry too much while I am there. The place I go to get the manicure and pedicure is so relaxing and so nice. Granted, I hate spending an extra $30 a month to relax but it is worth it to clear my mind for a day.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Feeling a little dumb at the moment...

Okay, I admit it. I had no idea about sugar alcohol. I have not asked Vince about it yet, but I will have to see if he is aware of it. I googled it and I think I understand it to be a type of sugar that is absorbed less...? so now it seems that even sugar free has sugar in it? I am a little confused...I think we might just get the oreos from now on... :)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Sugar Free Does Not Equal Insulin Free

While at the grocery store recently, I picked up one of our more favorable sugar free cookies. They taste pretty good and I don’t even mind eating them myself. I thought this was another good way to show how sugar and carbs affect glucose levels and insulin usage. Although these cookies are sugar free, they will still affect Vince’s glucose level. Some sugar free foods are also carb free and some are not. If he were to eat 3 of these cookies and not take his insulin, his sugar would begin to rise as the carbohydrates digest and without insulin, it would stay elevated with no hope of coming back down. The difference between regular sugar cookies, and sugar free, is the rate in which his glucose would be rising. The pure sugar would raise his glucose faster than the carbohydrates will, but the outcome would be the same. This is the reason that pure sugar is given to a diabetic in a low reaction. Carbs alone would raise the persons glucose in this situation as well, but it wouldn’t happen quickly enough in an emergency situation. For this snack, per the label, for every 3 cookies consumed, there are 20g total carbohydrates. Taking into account Vince’s ratio of units of insulin-to-carbs, he would have to bolus his insulin before eating the cookies and would give himself about 3 units using his pump to counteract the sugar that the carbs will be digested into. So when it comes to sugar free foods, sugar free is a good, healthy option, but since it is not always carb free, it is still not an insulin free food. The only foods that you can truly eat without any insulin are zero sugar and zero carb options.

The Floyd's Are Getting Organized!

As we get situated in our new home, we have found new ways to be organized. One thing we thought would be helpful is a written schedule of when Vince’s insulin pump and sensor needs to be changed. Since this is something that I have to assist him with, it is important to stay on schedule, so that we can be sure the site changes are happening at times that I am at home with him. We change his insulin every other day and his CGM sensor every 6 days. The pump will retain the dates and data on when the changes occur and that is normally what we go by, however, there are times that we do not remember until late at night when I am already in bed, or early the next morning before I go to work. To avoid this, we have now begun to use a calendar as a reminder tool to keep us organized and it seems that, to have it written out to glance at quickly, it is helping us to be more organized and prepared for when the site changes are occurring. We are also noting when certain medications he uses need to be filled. A few of the medications cannot be on refill, so we have to physically drop them off each month when they are needed. It is very important not to forget to run to the pharmacy on that day, so writing this down as a reminder is a great help.

We have also added a dry erase board to help us with reminders. We can leave each other notes and notes for ourselves here. If you haven’t noticed, we aren’t too good at remembering things with all that we have going on, so I think these things will be very helpful.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Beep Beep

It’s 4AM once again and what do I hear??? Beeeeppppp!!!!!! Let me back up for a minute. It’s 1AM and I wake up looking for Vince. I go to the living room to find him and he is about to come to bed. Fast forward back to 4AM again. Beep Beep. Low predicted is on the screen with a number that I believe was around 85. He is clearly not hearing the alarm and seems to be too drowsy to find the pump hanging on his shirt and comprehend what it says. I clear the alarm and go back to sleep. What I believe was about 20 minutes later, the beeping starts again. I try to wake him “Your beeping!!!” No response other than a mumble. Stupid drowsiness at it’s best. This time it was saying 70 something. (I was half asleep lol) Again I clear it and go back to bed. I cannot seem to remember that his actual sugar is usually lower than what is shown on the screen in the middle of a drop. Sometime later, probably 20 minutes or so, I hear the beeps again. At this point it says he is in the 60’s. I get out of bed, turn on the light and get out his meter. He isn’t showing signs of being low so I test him to find a 45 on the screen. UGH! Not again! And the routine begins again. I grab the drink by his side and ask him if it is regular. He says yes. I take a sip to double check. I ask him if he feels low and he says nope. I checked to see if he had any active insulin. 0.9 units show, so we should be fine if he can get the entire cup of sweet tea down. I did ask him why he even had brought a regular drink to bed since he normally brings diet. He said just in case. Once he drank it all down, I told him I was going back to sleep and if he hears the beeping, to pleeeaaaassseeee get it so I don’t have to get up again since I have to get up for work soon. He feels bad. He promises he doesn’t hear the beeping. I believe it. I know on the rare occasion that he does hear it, he will attend to it. He often sleeps through it during the night and during his naps. Not a good thing… I lay back down in bed but I make sure to face his side since I know the cgm thinks he is still low and will be beeping in a few minutes and I will be annoyed if I have to roll over to clear it. Can you tell I get cranky when my sleep is interrupted? Haha I finally fall asleep and am awoken I think one more time before my alarm goes off for work. I really think that this is like training me for when and if we have a baby cause I don’t do well with being woken up all the time. The cranky switch turns on. Before I leave for work, I prick his finger and see a 113 on the screen. Looks like the ice tea worked just fine. I also know that at this point in the morning his sugar always starts rising on its own so it will go up a little more too. Around 10:00AM I talked to him again and asked him how his sugar was doing. The sensor showed 114 with one arrow going up. I am pretty sure his actual number is a little higher. Today is a sensor site change day, and usually by site change day, the sensor is off a little so that explains part of that. I also asked him why he had some active insulin at 4AM in the morning. He said he ate something around 12AM. He has been having a very hard time with his appetite lately from one of his neuropathy related medications. He isn’t always eating dinner and will eat something small later in the evening/night. He says he gets extremely sick to his stomach and just can’t eat sometimes. I told him, just eat when you can. We decided not to call the doctor about the lows. They will just tell him to stop eating at night and at this point, that is not an option. If he doesn’t eat at night, he will not be eating at all other than a small lunch on some days and that just isn’t enough, day after day. I am sure it will pass, so we have to struggle through. Vince feels bad that I have once again been up at night for him. We both have a “feeling bad about things” issue don’t we? Lol All we can hope for is that in the future, a louder alarm will be on the market and his drowsiness will subside. Until then, we have to both be on alert as much as we are able.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

We Broke The Rules

It's 4AM. Beep Beep Beep. Are you kidding me?? I am starting the bad habit again of ignoring the CGM beeping at night since we have had so many false alarms when he is holding steady around 80-90. Nights are tough for Vince. They always have been. He runs high all the time during the night. It couldn't be controlled by his Lantus shot, no matter the dose, which is why he is back on the pump. (he loves the pump though now and won't go back to shots) The doctor will adjust his basal rates when he sees he is too high during the night hours, and then it will be good for awhile, and then he will start going to low. It's a bad cycle. Anyway, it's 4AM, beep beep, so I grunt and moan and I get up to look at the "false alarm" 58 is on the screen with a nice downward sloped line. Shoot. I turn on the light and Vince is full of sweat. He is alert but sweaty. I ask him if he feels low and he says yes. I don't even bother to check his finger stick. It's obvious the CGM is right. He has a drink on his nightstand and I asked him if it is regular and he says yes. He sits up and drinks it. I take a sip half way through just to be sure it is in fact regular. I checked his active insulin. Crap. 3.5 units still active. The soda won't do it this time. He must eat something. Oh no! We have a rule in the new place that we have worked hard to stick to. NO EATING OUTSIDE THE KITCHEN!! All drinks must have a lid (mostly for Vince since they tend to slip out of his numb pained hands) so I venture to the kitchen to find a clean snack. Hmm... A special k bar. That should work. I take it to him and he carefully eats. He is just as strict as I am with the new rule ;) He asks me for something else to eat and more drink. I agree since the bar only had about 19 carbs in it and with the 3.5 units still active, more snacks won't hurt. I say I agree since when he is low, sometimes the hunger takes over and he will eat a horse if he could. Just another beautiful side effect of being low. So I venture back to the kitchen for another clean snack. I return with a few tortilla chips on a plate and I ask Vince if he can eat them without making a mess. He says yes, and he did! Yay! He drinks some more Dr Pepper and says he is going to take a shower since he is drenched in sweat. I ask him if he is okay enough to take a shower by this point and he is. I lay back down, but leave the light on so he can see on his way back. I close my eyes and listen for any falls, screams, or anything that could happen. He returns to the bedroom all clean and lays back down. I don't know what time it is by this point but we are both able to finally go back to sleep. 

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Moved with D along for the ride

So, I am finally back. It's been about a week or maybe more since I have posted. We moved into a bigger place and although it was literally around the corner, it was still a move and still annoying. We spent a month packing, had lots of awesome family members who offered to help and the move went very smooth. Been in the new place one week and loving it! Newer kitchen and bath along with new carpet feels great. The old apartment had it's issues but I realized when we moved out that I need to clean more. A lot of the "mess" was lint from the dryer related (a whole other story) but I admit, some was us just not cleaning enough. To tell you the truth, I am just too tired most of the time to clean! But the new place is nice so I will force myself to do it. Vince and I have also talked about a few things he can do to help around the house. Simple things, but things that I won't have to do myself nonetheless. I told him, if he doesn't feel up to it, then don't do it. There is always tomorrow. Speaking of Vince helping, he was a great help during the move. That morning, he began moving boxes with the rest of us. His brothers and I reminded him to slow down and take it easy but he didn't listen. His pain quickly became overwhelming and his steam ran out. My sister in law came outside and said he was in bad shape and needed me. I mumbled under my breath that I can't help but I went to him. He was screaming in pain. His other diabetic older brother asked if this happens all the time and I said yes. I got Vince his pain medicine and told him to take it easy and just sit there until they kicked in. The rest of the day he just walked around following people and grabbed a pillow here and there. When we were all done, his brothers told him he shouldn't have pushed himself so hard and he just explained that he couldn't let everyone move his stuff while he just watched. Of course they thought that was silly, but they understood. For the next few days, we tried to unpack, between taking naps. He slept most of the day for a day or two. Once I went back to work, he would unpack a box or two each day and ask me what else he could do to help. Like I said, he was awesome. I think he needed that. For his self esteem. We are working on that too. Anyway, the night before the move, Vince was hovering low and the CGM, Mr. beeps, lived up to his name once again, and kept me up most of the night. Vince was very drowsy. So much so that he didn't even remember talking to his one brother on the phone that night. The next morning, after a sleepless night for myself, I mentioned to him that his brother was coming to help move that day and he was confused. It was then that we discovered that between his low sugar and drowsy state from the meds, he wasn't aware of much that happened that night. Before the "movers" came, we went out to get the moving truck and to get me a cappuccino to try to get me through on no sleep. He faught off lows all day that day and the following days after the move. A few more nights full of beeps, but finally his body evened out and I got some sleep. It must have been all that energy and exercise his body isnt use to because he was running so low that he had to drink sugary drinks all day for a few days just to stay even. So we are now just trying to get organized and get back into our routine, which I missed during moving week, but we are almost back to normal. Normal for us that is...