Monday, November 30, 2015

How Accurate is Dexcom Clarity?

I decided to brag a little today, because after tomorrow, I might find out that my brag is based on misinformation.

I downloaded the Clarity app for my phone when I first received my Dexcom G5. For the first few weeks that I had it, it didn't show what my "estimated A1C" was.  I think it has to collect a couple of weeks of data before it can come up with an estimation.  Within a few weeks, it started spitting out an estimated A1C along with a average glucose number. I felt pretty happy with the numbers I saw in the beginning.  But then felt motivated to make it even lower and better. So I've been trying my best, and doing a few things differently.  And the A1C number keeps getting lower as time goes on.  The other thing is my percentage of time spent "in range" has gotten longer.  It almost seems too good to be true.

Tomorrow will be my first appointment at with my endo since using this Clarity app.  If it's accurate, and I sure hope it is, this will be my best A1c EVER in my life. 

I will not, however, celebrate with ice cream!  Or a bowl of pasta!  Or even a real Coke!

I'll just feel happy- and lucky- that for now, I've got pretty tight control on this mysterious disease that keeps me on my toes, that keeps me learning and trying knew approaches all the time. And that will be enough for me.

Please check back- I will reveal how the endo lab results compare with the Dexcom Clarity app in the next few days.  My fingers are crossed...

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Why I'm Thankful to Have Type 1 Diabetes

Since it's Thanksgiving Day, and it's the time of year I generally like to count my blessings more than usual, I wanted to make this post all about my gratitude for Type 1 Diabetes and the impact it's had on my life.

That may sound a little strange, because having any ongoing health "situation" isn't necessarily awesome.  But I'm one for looking for the silver lining.  So here goes.

I secretly like having a disease that most people don't understand or even know about. I feel special and I feel smart.  I know a lot more about how food, stress, exercise, hormones, etc effect my body than most people do.  I'm doing calculations throughout the day,everyday. And all that calculating keeps me sharp.

I make healthy choices all the time, just because I know how it all effects my blood sugars.  I rarely over indulge (food or drink-wise) and I'm active a good amount of each day.  Somedays, I don't necessarily feel like running or going on a long walk, but because of my diabetes, I just make myself.  And then, I'm alway glad I did.  I've often thought I'm probably healthier because I have diabetes, all things considered.

I'm so grateful for insulin. Although I had a big fear of needles as a kid, I got over that pretty quickly when I realized my alternative if I didn't take multiple daily shots for the rest of my life.  These days, the shots don't bother me one single bit. Shots seem to be a more-than-fair trade off for staying alive. I know there are plenty of people with far worse diseases out there that wish they had it so good.

In the past couple of years, my interest in my blood sugar control has become more extreme- bordering on obsession- thanks to Dexcom.  Seeing what my blood sugars do throughout the day and night leave me with no reason to ever let things stay in a bad range for too long.  I told my husband the other day that it's sort of fun- like some strange and challenging game.  Just when I think I have it all figured out, something goes wrong and I have to try again.  And weirdly, I like that.  I guess I just like a good challenge and diabetes provides that.

I also love that I have a disease that I'm pretty much in charge of.  I don't have to wait for my doctor to advise me on what to do, ever.  I switch things up all the time and honestly I feel like I know more than most endocrinologists do.  I can't necessarily explain how it all works as well as a good medical doctor can, but intrinsically, I know how my body reacts to things, and I know how to make adjustments when things get "off".

So seriously- Like I said, I'm thankful.  I knew nothing about Type 1 Diabetes prior to my diagnosis over 20 years ago.  But now, I'm an expert. And even better, I still continue to learn knew things about it all the time.  And I'm still interested and challenged by it after all these years.  Sounds like a pretty good marriage to me.

Happy Thanksgiving, to my beloved Type 1.

Carbo Loading in Disneyworld

Ok, so now I have my new computer- Yay!
And I'm back from Disney- Hooray!
And I connected with another Type 1 blogger that lives here in Dallas also- and we challenged each other to resume our blogs, which we had both been neglecting as of late.  She's so on-the-ball, she already posted something the day following our discussion. (Check out her blog HERE- it's great!) Now about a week later, I'm ready to jump in as well!

During this past week, when I was at Disneyworld, falling blood sugars were an ongoing problem.
Maybe that was due to constant walking, or not being able to find decent food or even get my hands on indecent food quickly because of long lines.

Anyway, my sugar of choice is always Mentos.  Not the minty ones, but the fruity flavored ones.  But there are only so many Mentos one girl can tolerate over the course of 3 days.  I'm not one to ever pull the "I have diabetes" card out, but fortunately, in a time of need, my friend did it for me.  She asked an employee at one of the restaurants if they could just get me some crackers adding, "...because she's diabetic!"  And it totally worked.  We received very friendly and quick service, as well as a few packs of stale Saltine crackers- and they did the trick.  They provided me with enough carbs to survive and got the ongoing tart flavor from the Mentos out of my mouth for a while.

Thank you, Goofy.
But just for a while.  Eventually, I ran out of the crackers, and had to resort back to the Mentos.  Finally, I ran out of those too. I was then forced to buy an overpriced family sized bag of gummies in the shape of various Disney characters.  The bag was huge, and barely fit in my purse, but they made me feel safe again. I actually never even opened the package! Now they are yet one more memento of my trip to Disneyland.
My first and last day in the Magic Kingdom of DisneyWorld

Monday, November 9, 2015

Third World Problems

It was not at all my intention to go silent here...

But I've had a few technical difficulties lately.  I'm currently only able to use my super duper old desk top computer.   And I just can't bring myself to publish a post (beyond this ONE) without photos to accompany words, but on this computer, I don't have access to my photos.

It's just a matter of time before I can start blogging again.  I've finally ordered my brand spanking new computer (YEEEEHAWWW) and it should be arriving by week's end.

So thank you for being patient...
Please check back next week.  I have high hopes.  Good things are coming.