My A1c was lower at my recent endo appointment. Not by any earthshattering amount (and we still have a long way to go), but “lower” is enough for me right now. In fact, my recent A1c was lower on a shots regimen than it had sometimes been while using an insulin pump.
I thought I’d write some overly-emotional, 2000-word essay on how much the lower A1c means to me being back on shots. Instead, I’ll take my lack of wordiness as being one step closer to making peace with what happened to me and as a reminder to continue to advocate for others who need insulin.
Frankly, I am still bitter about how much I suffered due to defective insulin pump products. A few tech glitches per year are understandable, as tech does not equate to properly-functioning islet cells by any means, nor should it pretend to do so. But to have bi-weekly episodes of near-DKA due to tech issues is inexcusable. It breaks my heart to think of other people out there who may be going through what I went through, who simply want someone to believe them and to make it all better.
Thankfully, through the support of the #doc and some topnotch doctors and nurses, I am still here, I feel alive again, and I am getting into a better diabetes groove on multiple daily injections. The bruises are a visible reminder that diabetes does not go away no matter which treatment one pursues, but for me they are a small price to pay for the assurance that insulin gets into my body every day.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: do what works for you, whether that be insulin pumping or injecting or artificial pancreas-ing or Afrezza-inhaling. I just want all of us to feel good every day. But I also want those who experience tech problems to know that they are not crazy or “bad” diabetics. We are human beings; technology is technology; and, ultimately, #weneedacure.
But what about the people who don’t have a plethora of options? Having spent many days in bed with ketones when my insulin pump malfunctioned, I often find my thoughts traveling to Spare a Rose nowadays. I will never take insulin for granted again. When insulin was not getting into my body, I was like a fish out of water, slowly and painfully fading away. Kids without insulin suffer like that each day.
We must work hard to improve their access to life-sustaining insulin.
Diabetes is difficult enough to tame with insulin, never mind without it.