Wednesday 1 May 2013


The number six features twice in this post, both of which I am happy to write about.

Today marks my six month anniversary with my insulin pump.  I cannot believe it has already been six months! I have learned more about my body and its needs over the last six months than ever before.  I have had extremely frustrating moments and some fantastic achievements.  I have come up with the positives and negatives I have found so far being on the pump.  The positives, for me, far outweigh the negatives.

The main negative I can think of is the fact I am attached to a medical device nearly 24 hours per day.  It is a constant reminder of this disease and that can be mentally draining at times.  There is also the cost of having a pump, the supplies are not cheap!  I am very glad to have decent benefits to help me out and the monthly payments for the pump itself are quite manageable.  The minor negatives would be that I can no longer dilly dally in the shower as I don't want to be "unplugged" for any length of time. Sometimes it can hard to hide the pump discreetly when wearing tight clothes (thank goodness for a good bra and the girls!). Sometimes inserting the infusion sets hurts like a mofo and the sticky parts can irritate my skin.  The tubing loves doorknobs and I have lost more than a few sites to these things!  I do find that I test more so my fingers would say that is a negative.

Now for the best part, the positives.  I feel like I have more freedom in my lifestyle.  I can count my carbs accurately and dose accurately.  For me .10 of a unit can make a difference and being able to dose so accurately has helped me avoid lows.  I can eat what I like when I like. I love being able to set different basal rates through the day, particularly at night when I have the most insulin resistance (dawn phenomenon).  I love being able to set different basal rates for my hormones, this has helped me a lot.  By far the biggest positive for me has been being able to return to high intense activity.  This has been a work in progress and I have a long way to go, but I am starting to figure out my different needs for each type of exercise I do.  Being able to set temporary basal rates has been invaluable to me and has saved me from some mid-exercise lows.  I used to wonder if I would ever be able to run another marathon or one day do a half ironman (with the ultimate goal being a full one).  Now I am confident that these goals can be achieved.  It will take patience and a lot of trial and error but I feel positive about it.  One of my favorite things is knowing my insulin on board.  It helps me to determine whether I need a snack before bed, whether I need to set a temp basal rate and is a good guide to determining if I may go low.  Since starting on the pump I have had so many people ask me about it and I love that it gives me the chance to educate others.  I have also managed to drop some of the extra weight I was carrying and I think this is because I have had less lows and am not eating to chase the insulin.  Also the fact that my pump is 100% waterproof is wonderful!

Overall it has been the best decision for me.  Will it always be the best choice, maybe not, but for now I would not change it.  I have had some funny comments/questions about the pump. Most memorable would be someone asking why I had a dictation machine in my sports bra, lol.  People have asked if it is an underwater iPod (I wish!), a pager, a tape recorder or a new kind of phone.  A lot of people assume the pump can manage my diabetes by itself and are usually surprised to hear that  I do everything I did before and in fact it takes more work and more testing.  I still suffer lows and highs and I know this is part and parcel of having Type 1 diabetes. I am looking forward to the next six months of learning and reaching my training goals.

The other six I want to mention A1C.  I met with my endo last Friday and was shocked to hear that it has dropped to 6.0.  He was very happy with this as I have not achieved it through having tons and tons of lows.  He was able to pinpoint some patterns for me, mostly to due with exercise and the delayed lows I get.  He gave me some ideas to try and said he did not need to see me again for 6 months!  He was a bit concerned about the issues I continue to have with my feet (details to follow in a different post) and will monitor this closely.  I pretty much floated out of his office :)

All in all the last six months have been extremely positive for me and my companion Type 1 diabetes.


  1. Yay! I'm glad the pump is working so well for you. Yes, it's annoying, hard to hide and catches on doorknobs but it does make a pretty big difference in how we manage diabetes. Especially with your marathon and half-ironman goals.

    And congratulations on your A1C. That's pretty impressive!

    1. Thank you! I am pretty pumped about it all, lol.

  2. Just read this and was like "hell yeah!"

    I was diabetic for 10.5 years and 4.5 of those on a pump before I ever had an A1C in the 6's so KUDOS to you big time.
    Sounds like you're rocking along and kicking ass.

    I'm loving reading about new pumpers and what they think. It helps to affirm a lot of things for me especially my choice to ditch the pump. I love how well it's all working for you!

    I never had much of a problem with doorknobs though and probably because my pump and tubing were almost always under my clothes.

    Oh as for the shower thing? A lot of folks bolus a wee bit and have longer showers. I never did that but it's a thought for the possibility of an extra long shower.
    Or like, wear a garter belt in the shower since you have a waterproof one. THAT'S sexy. ;)

    1. Hey I like the idea of a garter belt, ha ha. Maybe you should market that. Uber sexy!

  3. Congratulations! That's such a huge accomplishment.