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I just upgraded to the Ping after 4 years on the pump and I "love" it (I want to love it but I am resentful of anything D right now) and I've been experiencing some emotional overload from the feeling of being attached to my "pancreas". I decided today to shift back to syringes and vials (my pens are to be refilled tomorrow) and I'm already discouraged with that option! I forgot how much work it is to draw up a shot every time I eat (I snack all day long.) The last three months I worked super hard to get my a1c down to 6.6 but for the last 3 weeks I've been an average of 200 and I feel so sick, I just can't pull it together. Today I was 300 all day and my sights keep malfunctioning because of scar tissue, I'm running out of space. I'm counting wrong and I just feel totally overwhelmed. I hope this pump vacation will help but I'm already feeling a little overwhelmed just from switching back to shots. What else can I doooooo to collect my thoughts and feel some peace please???
The rationality behind your steps is a bit strange to me. I can understand that you are overwhelmed and stressed out but the pump or pen is just a tool. You can switch back and forth as you like but you need to make some serious changes to your current life - at least for a while. Try to make things easier for you not harder:
a) no more snacking all day long. 4 to 5 meals per day. Restrict your carbs to 100g per day. Small amounts of carbs => small amounts of insulin for coverage => less margin for error.
b) no more eating after 8pm. This way you will have no insulin on board when you are going to sleep. A small meal to prevent a low at night is okay (this might be necessary with Lantus).
c) try to find out why your pump treatment has failed. Do you think that your basal requirements have changed drastically? A second wave of autoimmune reactions might have killed the remaining beta cells. This might cause your current problems and will need more basal to replace the missing beta cells. Another possibility is that you have a thyroid related issue. This might reduce your basal metabolic rate so you will need more basal insulin.
d) if you really want to stick with the pen then our Glucosurfer project might be helpful. But for that you will need a smartphone based on Windows Phone or Android - the iPhone is another possibility but only web based. With this project you can share your current diabetes log with us. This way we can develop more ideas how your current situation can be improved.
e) try to make sure that your basal needs are really covered. Without good coverage you can not regain good control. A good approach is basal rate testing. Here you will not eat for 1/2 day and the basal dosage is expected to keep you steady. After two days you will know how good your needs are covered.
I was up all night testing my basal rates and I've had fantastic numbers before sleep and after and through the night. My main frustration with the pump is just feeling like I can't escape it, it's attached all the time and yesterday I just realized I'd had enough for a while. My sites weren't absorbing because of my scar tissue and I've run out of places to put my sites (I'm quite slender). I've also recently developed a mild allergy to the plastic. I'll definitely remember b) in the future. Thank you!
Well, there is a reason why I am not in the pumpers club. I just needed one catheter to now that this approach is not psychologically sane for me. Thus I have put much efford into the Glucosurfer project to get more out of MDI. The temporary basal rate is still something I would like to have. But so far it is the price I am willing to pay for being free from a device.
Steff, I wish I had a magic pill to deal with this because it happens, in one form or another, to all of us. I am T2 and my care is a lot earier. One shot of lantus and I am good for the day. I can only imagine what you are going through.
But I would be willing to bet that this is not the first time you have come across emotional overload. Sorry to say that ti will probably not be the last. All I can offer you is the simple fact that you can do it. You can beat this.
I can completely relate to what you're going through. Earlier this year, I started on the Omnipod. It was great not having to deal with any tubing! But....I would bleed/bruise a lot with them. Got discouraged - put my Ping back on - hated the tubing even more! So, I've been back on shots for the last 3 weeks. Just discovered a few days ago that my I:C ratio had changed! For the longest time, I've been really spiking after meals (both with the pumps and with shots), but it would come down eventually. If I corrected, I'd go low. But, now that I've changed my I:C ratio, no more spikes (that is, if I've counted the carbs correctly...). I didn't pick up pens, because I didn't know how long I'd be doing the shots. But right now, I really like not having anything attached to me. I will prefill a syringe before going out - it fits right in my meter case. I can give a quick shot quicker than messing with my pumps. It might take you a little while to get your dosages right on shots, but once you do, you'll feel better. I wish you the best of luck!
A very normal response! This helps me: Don't think/worry about doing this forever......just do it for THIS day. Just think about what you can do THIS day to make a tiny bit of improvement. Just for THIS day....
This motto really does help. I think that might be the only way I can ever really cope with it. Living in the moment.
I went through a burn-out of sorts back in January of this year. I've been MDI for10 years, and I got my Ping last August. I started a new role at my job in November traveling at least every week. I was getting frustrated with running out of insulin, no real balance due to living out of a hotel room and on fast food. I had so may site failures - It was mentally draining.
I took a 2 week break while on the road and went back to MDI. It was hard keeping up with shots. My levels were out of whack all the time. I guess you would say I had the same issues with or without the pump. This is when it dawned on me, I never really had thought out what I needed to support my pump when I'm not at home, or near home.
When I had a 2 week break being back at home, I put a travel plan together. Always replace my site in x amount of time, always refill my insulin when I have x units left, always carry double supplies. Once I put the plan in action, I've had zero issues on the road.
There's nothing wrong with taking a break, just as long as you make a choice and put a date to when you will resume with the pump and keep to it.
I try to find other things to be burnt out about, work, arguing with a 13 year old all the time, etc. diabetes is a piece of cake by comparison. I'm not sure I understand the appeal of the pump holidays although I've only had mine for 4 years now w/ CGM for two. Maybe when I run out of real estate I'll get more interested?