The Journey: Episode Twenty

AUGUST 23, 2020

Well nothing really to report. However, I got my blood test done for my A1C and my number isn’t looking too hot. I was at 7.9 in April and now I’m at 8.2. So it’s gone up a little bit and I’m not too happy about that. All the insulin injections and blood sugar checks and I’m no better. But on the bright side at least it’s not at 11% like it was last year so in a year’s time I’ve managed to drop by 3% so that’s good news.

My doctor appointment with my endocrinologist is this Thursday so I’ll have an update by next episode.

I’ve been drinking the cinnamon tea some more. I talked with my diabetes coach and she said there was no concrete evidence it really helps to lower your blood sugar. I decided to make an experiment of it. But I can only do it for a week. Here’s how it would work:

For three days, I won’t drink cinnamon tea, Wednesday I would drink only the nighttime tea, then the last three days I’ll drink both teas. I’ll eat the same food at the same time every day, take my medications at the same time and check my blood sugar at the same time. That means alarms will have to be set on my phone and I’d have to try and sleep around the same time to be able to wake up around the same time.

I have to wait a couple weeks so I can save up money to buy the food for meal prepping and more prescriptions. Plus, I’m not sure if my doctor is going to give me a new insulin and I’d like to give it at least a week to figure out how it works for me. But when I do start my experiment, I’ll record about it here. I’m kind of excited about it because it’s going to make me feel like a scientist with all the note taking and experimenting.

I’m going to try a couple of days without the tea to see if there is any significant change in my blood sugar readings. So far it’s been looking pretty good although I take my tea either right before or after taking my blood sugar right now so I have to figure out the best time to drink and check. I’ll figure it out eventually.

Oh hey a self love update! I bought a t-shirt and lounge pants with The Child on them and I love them so much. However, the pants were way too long for my short legs so I cut them off at the knees, just below the graphics. Which is good because I can’t inject insulin in my thighs with pants on. I love it like this and I can use the cut off material to either make pillows or face masks, I have options.

The t-shirt is kind of thick and big so I cut the sleeves and collar off and I turned it into a crop top. It comes down to my belly button and it’s very comfy. I’ve decided to use it as my new pajama set, it’s been kind of warm lately anyway. Maybe when it gets colder and I get a little bit more confident I can wear it out in public. I might do it with other shirts that I have. I’m totally in to crop tops right now.

I’ve had issues with loving myself lately with this pandemic and my diabetes so finding something that makes me feel great about myself is a win in these dark times. I greatly encourage you to find that something in your life that makes you love yourself and enjoy it. You don’t have to take it out in to public if you’re not comfortable with that but you deserve to love the way you look and who you are. No matter who you are and what you look like, you deserve to love yourself and the body you’re in.

The Journey: Episode Nine

APRIL 25, 2020

So I just got my new glucose meter and MyID Medical ID. I’m super excited about both of them. This Thursday I’ll post a review of the One Drop Meter. I’m very excited about it. If you want to see the unboxing video, I posted it up on my Instagram. Besides that, it’s pretty much business as usual.

Thanks to the One Drop app, I have a diabetes coach named Rachel. This past week she’s been getting to know me and my diabetes a little more to see exactly how she can help. I’ve learned a bit about diabetes from her too.

With 55units of insulin as my current dosage, I can inject about 5 days per pen and I’m down to my last three pens before my next appointment this Thursday and I don’t know how long after that I’ll be able to get my next prescription.

Unfortunately, 55units isn’t working. My doctor said that my max should be 65 units so I’m getting pretty close to that. I’m a little afraid of upping it to 60units because 55 takes so long to inject as it is and it hurts even if I go slowly. Last night was weird, I injected on the right side of my piko (belly-button) and it was a little sore, but when I tried to push the plunger down, it was having trouble going down and started to hurt a lot. I think I managed 5 units before I couldn’t push anymore. So I stopped and pulled it out before trying in another area close by. There was a bit of blood from the first site. The second site went in less painfully and was easier to push down. I wonder what was blocking the first injection that it didn’t go down well.

I had my A1C blood test this past Thursday and I should know the results during my appointment, which will be done over the phone because my doctor is on Oahu and they’ve had a lot of cases in the past month and a half. Super scary to travel to Oahu with diabetes right now. Plus I’m unemployed now and couldn’t afford a plane ticket.

I hope my A1C reflects well on my insulin usage. This quarantine has really messed me up. Before the quarantine, 45 units was doing really well for like three weeks and then it wasn’t working anymore and I had to up my dosage to 50 and now 55. I might have to up it to 60 units before my doctor appointment so I can see if that brings my numbers lower. My fasting glucose reading has been over 140mg/dL with a couple under 125. I don’t know if 60 units is going to help but I want to see anyway, even if I’m afraid of the paid of a prolonged injection speed.

APRIL 26, 2020

Last night, I upped my insulin to 60 units I first tried to inject and it was too painful so I stopped and removed the needle to inject in another site. That one was a lot easier and less sore. However, my fasting blood sugar was reading at over 170mg/dL. I am very upset with this reading. My weight has dropped 5 pounds in the past week so I’m glad about that which means I’m eating better and getting good exercise. I’m definitely eating more veggies, mostly pickled veggies but veggies nonetheless. I am so excited about the One Drop meter and the app.

So now I’m just waiting for Thursday’s doctor appointment to see how well I’ve been doing or not doing on my insulin. Not gonna lie, when I saw the plunger go up to 60 units I was like holy cow that’s a long way to go.

Other than that, quarantine is really messing with my eating habits and my mental and emotional health. I live in a house with zero privacy and can’t enjoy a night alone with my husband just relaxing and enjoying each other’s company. Our wedding anniversary was on Wednesday and it was the most alone time we’ve had in two months and it was spent not at home. Plus, we were both rejected for unemployment and the letter said we had to contact the office for an appeal, but I can’t get through on the phone and no one has answered my email. I’m getting very frustrated and losing hope.

BUT the other day we got approved for SNAP benefits and that is the best news we’ve gotten this year so far. We don’t have to worry about food now just the bills we still have to pay for unfortunately. We might have to cut off Netflix and Disney + and just stick with Amazon Prime, just to make bills easier for us. We’ve gotten deferments for most of our bills until July but there’s some that we can’t get deferments on, like our cellphone bill. We have to get in contact with our bank about deferments on our loans there.

This is a crazy time and we’re all just trying to survive. Be smart and be safe out there everyone.

What is Blood Sugar and A1C?

Blood sugar is the main sugar found in the blood. We get the glucose from the food we eat. Blood sugar is an important source of energy for the body’s organs, muscles, and nervous system. The insulin produced by the pancreas helps to regulate the glucose in the bloodstream so that it can be stored and processed by the body correctly.

Hemoglobin A1C, also known as just A1C, is the average levels of blood sugar over a 3 month period. Hemoglobin is the part of the red blood cells that carries oxygen to the cells. Glucose attaches/binds with the hemoglobin and A1C tests are based on this attachment and show the heightened levels of glucose in the blood. This means high levels of glucose are attached to hemoglobin and in your bloodstream.

Normal people have an A1C of 5.7% or less.
Prediabetic people have an A1C of 5.7-6.4%.
Diabetic people have an A1C of 6.5% or more.

Check out this chart to get an idea of what your blood sugar should look like whether or not you have diabetes.
It’s also A good indicator to see whether or not you may have diabetes.

Glucose is fuel for your body when it is at normal levels. High sugar levels in the bloodstream erode the ability of cells in the pancreas to make insulin which can permanently damage the pancreas. This could also lead to the hardening of blood vessels.


Getting the A1C test will help your doctor determine if you have prediabetes or full blown diabetes and then counsel you on any lifestyle changes and monitor your condition. If you catch it in the prediabetes stage, you have the chance to reverse it and keep yourself away from diabetes.

I was told for two years that I was on the verge of getting diabetes. My doctor gave me multiple chances and I still didn’t listen. Now I have to work extra hard to lose the weight and fix my lifestyle. I don’t think I can fully reverse my diabetes now, but I can manage it to the best of my ability. It’s just a lot of work now.


I created a printable daily diabetic log where you can keep track of the medication you took, your blood sugar for the day, any workout you had, and the food you ate for the day. Click here to download the log and keep track of your day. I plan to come out with more printables to help keep you accountable with your diabetes, so stay tuned!


References

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease
WebMD
Live Science