My first Pump Class was…interesting.
It was gosh darn near overwhelming…in the best way possible.
I was supposed to be in a class with one other individual, also embarking on the quest to Pumpdom, however, they had to postpone their start date.
Maybe they caught wind of their classmate…and didn’t want any of that! LOL.
So. It was just me and three DEC (Diabetes Education Centre) employees. In a classroom.
The Pump Educator asked if I would prefer to her office. A more intimate setting, and less of a “talk at you” situation.
Off we went.
She had a bit of a giggle at the fact that I hadn’t really dissected the box Omnipod sent. At least I hadn’t beyond the initial inventory to be sure the contents were a) all there, and b) in good form. While I had thoroughly explored the manual, I had been a bit nervous to actually touch the PDM (Personal Diabetes Manager). Though I did take the chance and add a bit of sparkle to it, with a glittery black skin.
So we released it from the shackles and breathed life in to it, by adding batteries. We then proceeded by pushing all the buttons, countless times, to set things up, while watching and reading a series of Power Point slides.
Was it different from what I had imagined? I don’t know. I’m not entirely sure I had dared to allow myself to imagine anything. But, as the morning trucked along, my confidence was building and I really felt like this was something I was going to be able to do. And do successfully.
Things with the educator wrapped up faster than expected. Mostly because it was only me in attendance, but also because I’m no Type 1 Diabetes newbie. While the pump experience was fresh to me, general Diabetes Dos and Don’ts are something I’m pretty familiar with. Given the ‘Betes and I have been formally living together for nearly 20 years now…
My educator was lovely. In all my years, and visits to various clinics, I had never come across someone like her. Having her on my team will make a massive difference. She was just the right kind of person to walk me through this initiation.
Because I was flying solo through the class, she kindly bumped my next appointment up by 30 minutes, so we could drop our kiddo off to school, and so my husband could attend for the inaugural pump experience.
We parted ways until Wednesday and I popped to the office next door for the nutritional part of the class.
Now. Please don’t get me wrong. I appreciate everyone involved in this process. And, I truly am grateful for all the people brave enough to pursue careers in the medical/health sciences fields.
But…fuck off with your plastic food.
I cannot tell you how many classes I have HAD to attend about food. Measuring food. Counting the carbs and subtracting the fiber in/from food. Reading the nutritional labels on food.
Blah, blah, blah.
I hate these classes. In fact, a small part of me probably loathes them.
Is it not enough that my T1D means I have to do all of those things above, PLUS math equations, just to eat…
Bolus and not die. Fuck.
PLUS, I have yet to encounter one of these foodie class educators who isn’t borderline skeletal with their nose pointed directly to the sky. And though this one was more pleasant than most, she was no different.
Thankfully, my regular RD (Registered Dietician) was along for the ride because she is training to be a Pump Educator. And she, my lovely RD, is fan-freaking-tastic. And a normal/average sized human. With a properly positioned nose.
Thank fucking goodness.
Please note, I do not mean to sound disrespectful or judgey…I have had many a battle with food, before and after my T1D diagnosis. Plus, I suffer from Body Dysmorphia. So, having a person I can better relate to is better for my mental health and foodie frame of mind.
Did I mention that on this day I was struggling with the tail end of a nasty head cold? Could explain my extra bitchiness…
Anyways. The food part wrapped up quick enough and I was sent on my way. Home to pick up my fellas and out for a celebratory lunch. So I could stuff my face with carbs exceeding the 30-40 grams I would be restricted to, per meal, come Monday. For two weeks.
When I go LIVE with my insulin pump!
What a cool way to wrap up Diabetes Awareness Month. A month, oddly enough, I had never really celebrated or paid much mind to…until this year.
Thank you Slipstream.
The weekend between my 2 classes also had a heavier-than-usual Diabetes theme. A Diabuddy of mine (my fav Diababe to drink matcha with!) and I were hosting a screening of Bike Beyond. A super stellar documentary about some awesome T1Ds who bike across America.
We were fortunate to have a screening of the film at camp, with some of the riders in audience! My pal and I were over the moon to host this event, along with a local artists’ collective who generously donated their space for the viewing. We had a lot of fun planning it.
And we even met and made a couple more Diabuddies at the event!
People popped in off the street and watched too. It was a truly special moment, and I was so glad to have both my fellas there to support and watch.
The next day was a BIG day.
A very fucking BIG day.
It was to be the day I start wearing my pancreas on the outside.
And stop the mental torture of injecting myself. In order to stay alive.
The next day was the first day I was going to actually start to LIVE.