April query: how do you bounce back?

Spring Has Sprung – How do you bounce back when you’ve hit a bump in the diabetes road? Do you have a story to share about something you’ve turned around or bounced back from? Strategies that you use to turn a difficult situation or negative mindset around?

Three years ago I put myself in the ER because I had mixed up my day and night insulin. I gave myself three days worth of Novolog at one time. Eight hours later I was allowed to return home, recover, and contemplate the mistake I had made and the fact that it almost killed me and left my children motherless.

One week later I ordered the insulin pump I was fighting and quit the job I was hating. I embraced my new pump (as much as one can) and started my own consulting company. Both were excellent choices, even if the path to the ultimate end was a rough one. I am frequently thankful for my pump and my ability to start my own firm and make my own path in life.

Diabetes is a wake up call each and every day. It forces you to be thankful for the life you have, cherish modern medicine, and view the world around you differently.

I hit a bump a few years ago when my A1C went up while I was trying to lose weight, not diabulimia or anything like that but just (totally) uneducated guessing. I got a pump.

Even a number out of range can be good data that you can use to plan your next move is my strategy.

I hit a bump getting used to my Ping pump. After a year of: airport TSA hassles; dealing with where to put/clip the pump; what to do at the beach; losing the monitor that controls the pump remotely; guessing the carbs wrong (sometimes way wrong); worrying if the battery will go dead and the resulting re-priming will happen during the work day or worse, golf day; using up the reservoir before it's convenient to switch out everything; and my favorite - being tethered to something 24/7; plus my A1cs were worse than before the pump. I just got sick of it.

So, I went back to multiple daily injections. Just take one Lantus shot in the morning and Humulog with every meal - so simple. That worked for a couple of weeks and then I started actually missing the pump: the small 2 unit adjustments I could make (I don't give myself a shot for anything less than 5 units); the temp basal feature I use during exercise; and the IOB calculations automatically done.

Now I switch back and forth - MDI for before, during and after out-of-town trips; pump for normal, predictable weeks at work. My A1cs have stablized and I like the flexibility of having two ways to deal with my disease.

I went thru a period recently where my control was not as good as it had been or as good as it could be. I have in the past just ignored the problem and become depressed about it. But that wasn't what happened. This time I used the knowledge I have learned from my good friends at Tudiabetes and got down to working on my diet and restating my exercise regime. I was able to get things back in line and have even done better than before. I did this by keeping a good attitude and applying the knowledge I have learned.

Gary S

Hmm i just got a pump in november and my a1c has gone up 2 points so something is gonna be changed with my pump or i'm going back to injections.

Sounds like your basal needs to be increased. It took me a year to figure out all of the adjustments you can make with the pump. I think my A1c problem with the pump had more to do with me miscalculating how many units for how much carbs and how many carbs in meals. But it works for me to go back & forth between pump & MDI.

I actually wrote about an issue with this recently, how I'd become so accustomed to treating diabetes according to a "formula" that I wasn't paying attention to a bunch of new problems that were arising.


I don't know specific ways of dealing with such issues, for me it's just a matter of recognizing the problem and resolving to deal with it. Bottom line, I don't want to go blind or lose some limbs, and that's usually what kicks me back into gear.

Hi Nick, thanks for sharing your article with us.

"Just because something worked ten years ago does not mean it will work in the future. There comes a time when you need shift focus and try something new..."

This line from your article really spoke to me because this is exactly what happened to me. I was on auto-pilot as you described in your article for many, many years. Then fluctuating hormone levels as I transition to menopause caused everything that had been working for 25 years not to work anymore.

I had always resisted a pump because I was doing pretty well without one. But after beating my head against the wall trying to fix the problems with injections, I finally decided I had to try something new and went on an OmniPod pump. The ability to adjust basals on the fly and make small changes has made me optimistic again that I can manage this thing.

As my CDE put it, "you were out of options with injections and now you have options again". :)

Glad you enjoyed it. You know what's funny? I was very averse to the pump originally too ( I never liked the idea of having a machine in control). But after I switched, things have been much easier to control. Hope the same happens for you.

OMG at the bumps I've hit! The one thing that I've always used is trying to find a way to laugh (mostly at myself for doing some really dumb things that I know better than to do) but honestly u have to have a sense of humor to get back on tract. I try it this way...if i look at it from a "normal persons" point of veiw some of the things I do and say in some of those sertances are really funny (coming from the diabetic pov to a "normal" person's pov. Just laufter has helped me take a negitive and change it into a postive MANYTIMES.

I appreciate the way that you share your positive outlook on many issues Doris! Thank you for that. It always makes me smile to read your posts :)

You're absolutely right about using humor to get through our frustrating moments... I mean only a PWD would understand having to change a pump site or a cgm sensor in your office at work with your pants undone to get to your abdomen..(the door was closed though people)! Just glad nobody walked in! :) Makes me giggle to think about it.

Thank u soo much for likeing & reading my posts. I hope to always make u smile. Yes only a PWD can understand things like that! And honestly it is funny isn't it???? How about when u go low and try to say nice things to ppl but come out saying what u think about them and it's usually not nice at all??? Done that too manytimes. Now my husband will look at me (if he's around when I do things like that) and say "U know ur not making any sence at all don't u?" I usually (though not all the time) get what he means and shut up. Like I said though there are times I don't. Done the low thingy one time when his sister was,er, feeling really good and just kept going needless to say I wasn't nice to her at all. LOL!

Analytical thinking and no panic... I think that is what has always helped me to deal with bad BGs. And most importantly, frequent checking.
Moving to a country with much higher test strips allowance definitely helps...