Saturday, November 06, 2010

When he starts yelling at traffic

I've started asking if he needs to eat. I think he's going low. Why? Because we have plenty of times when we go out and he drives and he can handle the traffic, it's not problem. But other trips, when I think traffic is normal, he starts making cracks and comments about the idiot drivers.

So I've been trying to track this. And if we stop and get a quick bite, or just a cold diet soda...he seems to do much better. If we stop and go in somewhere, sit down and eat a bite, even if it's small....suddenly the traffic is no problem.....all those idiot drivers just disappeared!

Something to think about. The lower the sugar, the more idiots are on the road? Pretty funny! But there's a definite pattern with hubby.


Friday, November 05, 2010

No dialysis

We had an interesting conversation at lunch today. Hubby informed me that he will refuse dialysis when the time comes. He considers it "life support". He has a DNR. So I can sort of understand where he is coming from.

He was quite depressed. Says he is not going to have the back surgery. Is going to just live with the pain. I have been doing a lot of research and if he doesn't do the surgery, I think he will soon be a hunched over man. I suppose it can't hurt a lot to wait a few months, but I do worry about what will happen in the interim. I think it's the cortisone injection doing the talking right now. He had the injection 2 weeks ago and this one took, so he's getting a lot of relief from his pain. When it wears of, it may be a different story.

But I can also understand him not wanting to go through a major surgery just 8 months after open heart surgery. He is still trying to get the incision on his leg to heal. We went to wound care again today and they are not happy with the lack of progress, so have changed the protocal a 3rd time and we return in 2 weeks.

Hubby made the comment that he wished all his money wasn't going for medical care and I have to agree. Co-pay for office visits runs about $500 per month, prescriptions are running around $250 per month. That doesn't count larger co-pays for non-formulary items. I'm ever so grateful that we have the money now, but I wonder how long. And can he ever retire with these amounts of medical expenses? Probably not.

The idea of not doing dialysis scares me to death as I will then have to watch him die slowly.

And I wonder if by then the medical profession will have the power to force him to do something he doesn't want to do.

Such a horrible disease.


Thursday, November 04, 2010

Lynn wrote:
Thanks for enlightening me about why a diabetic rants...and how they probably can't control it. It is so great lately for us but I do think the less stressful retired lifestyle along with the antidepressants have brought about this change, because the years of being in a pressure cooker lifestyle, with kids in the house and his teaching and coaching,and then being an administrator, then even after retiring from that taking on co-running a diner...all the pressure of stress through the years created these moments of ranting and like you said, it didn't matter who got in his path, they heard it and saw it. Thanks for clarifying this...I sometimes got tired of making excuses for him, but this makes more sense. WOW! THIS IS HUGE! My hubby readings are always high, but perhaps he does dip down and that is when he blows up. thanks...this blogging about living with diabetes is a sanity saver. HUGS AND LOVE!

I think it's important to realize that highs can be the same as lows. There's an imbalance in the glucose levels. When my hubby goes high, he is very irritated and edgy. Everything annoys him. He doesn't seem to rant and rave like he does in a low, but he simply can't tolerate anything.

The other important thing is to understand how highs and lows work together to form an A1c. My hubby's A1C runs around 6.2. Yet we know that he has one low after another. In order for the A1c to be that high, he HAS to have a lot of highs to average out to be 6.2, when he has so many lows. Think of it as a ball. If a ball hits the floor and bounces 6' high, the middle is 3'. In order to keep the ball at 3', right at the middle, then every time it hits the floor (zero) it has to bounce to 6' high (the high). If it bounces to zero, then 2', then zero, then 2', then zero, then 2', the middle would only be 1 foot.

Diabetes is the very same thing. If the average is 6.2 and he has 10 lows....he had to have 10 highs in order to maintain that average.

We have done enough recordings that we're pretty certain hubby has his highs while he is sleeping. And that's probably just as bad. Well, while I don't haveto put up with his moods, highs are busy eating up his veins and nerve endings...high sugar does a lot of damage.

Again, I'm not a medical professional, I just write my own personal experiences. And close observation, notes, charts, tracking glucose levels has led us and his physicians to some rather good conculsions. I have to say that he has been pretty level since his open heart surgery. But we are also regulating his eating, exercise, activities more than he ever did in the past. He's much more regular about when he takes his meds. Is he compliant? Probably not by any medical standards. But much more than he ever was in the past.

But also, I have learned how to recognize the lows and know to make him take a glucose tablet. I know when he needs to eat. I know when to proclaim that I'm starving and I have to eat immediately! If I eat, he does, and then his sugar will come back up.

And I will say that life is much more pleasant when glucose is regulated. Don't get me wrong, we still have numerous outbursts. But I'm more prepared for them, know better how to handle them, and know that I can simply get in the car and drive away when I need to. :o)


Tuesday, November 02, 2010

reene wrote

DW - I so feel your pain! I have so many thoughts going through my mind - I don't know where to begin! Let's see what I get down here and, if any of it makes sense. Let's start with current behavior / situation. I recently went on an east to west coast road-trip with my sister, in her move to the west coast. We had a great time driving ~4500 miles total - checking out many natural wonders of the US. In the meantime, my husband refused to take my calls back home. He kept his cell off and, wouldn't answer the home phone. Kept in touch with our adult children, who had to deal with a couple of low blood sugars during my week away (he's usually good when I'm away). Needless to say, our children had to pick me up from the airport. We really haven't spoken much since I returned which, is not much different from his recent behavior. Although, I have to say his lack of communication isn't that foreign to us - it just seems to have reached at new level. He was probably mad that I went with my sister. He's never been happy with my outside activities - not being supportive of much that I do, including continued education for career growth. But, I can't let him bring me down - make me a prisoner. If I think I'm frustrated now, I'd really be frustrated. The additional activities include: a lot of volunteering at church and working with youth when our children were still in the school system. He's currently treating for Parkinson's, after a couple of years of symptoms. A good year ago, the doc didn't feel it was Parkinson's but, upon husband's recent doc appt (after over a year not seeing a doc), the doc has decided it is Parkinson's. Multiple med's have been prescribed - they may be making a positive difference - I sure hope they are. Just did a little online research to see if there is a correlation with frequent low blood sugars (yes, probably at least a thousand of them here, too) and Parkinson's, finding that frequent severe low blood sugars can lead to brain damage. 
Do we have a match? Well, I'm no MD but.... Brings me back to a doc appt I accompanied my husband to several years ago (10+, at least). I asked the doc if frequent low blood sugars could harm a person. His reply: no more than taking a sh1t or having sex. Thank you oh educated I sit with yet another challenge, possibly a side effect of diabetes. I thought years ago of leaving my husband - actually kicking him out. But, our children (preschool and early elementary at the time) started acting up. It made me question: was it fair to disrupt his or their lives because I wasn't happy with how he wasn't taken care of himself? Everyone needs someone - is my purpose in life to take care of him? Have to say - not much enamored with this purpose. Don't like the anger; the frequent low blood sugars and all that comes with them; trying to function on little to no sleep the next day (most of his lows are at night - resulting in me not getting back to sleep for hours or, just in time for the alarm to go off). Additionally, our children are very frustrated with him. My daughter is very verbal thus, take her comments with a grain of salt. Our son, however, is an extremely fair, level-headed young man. When he starts expressing frustration, then I know it's not fabrication on my part. Our son asked me a few months back if my husband / his father ever said he was sorry or thank you - after I help him with a low. He has not. In fact, lately, he has begun arguing that he wasn't even low (like he did when our children were really young). The tell-tail signs were there, as were the blood sugar results I see when taking a peak at his glucose monitor. Our children have started helping me with the lows. Does this bother their father - thinking that his children are stepping in to help when he can't help himself? Did I make the right decision in sticking with him? All I know is I hate to see our children and myself be treated like the city dump.... OK, enough of my ramblings...thank you for "listening"... It's not an easy life for anyone involved, especially the diabetic.

Monday, November 01, 2010

some days are just funny

So, he says to me that he's not going to have the back operation.  Me, I aks him questions.  Why not? You said you don't want to end up living like your grandma did.  What will you do?

He says he will just live with the pain.

I remind him that we haven't been anywhere together in over 2 years.  It hurts him to travel.  He doesn't even go to the grocery store.

He says he will just suck it up and deal with it.

So, I tell him, tomorrow, you can go get groceries.

I want to see you dancing a jig every morning

I want you walking 3 miles a day.

This morning, he gets up and comes downstairs and dances a jig.

I crack up laughing.

But I know from the look in his eyes that just about killed him!

Told him to think about things for a couple of weeks.  No need to make a decision one way or another today.

But today, he is starting on Weight Watchers.  at least 50 pounds to lose.

Pray for him.

It will be a miracle if he can stick with it more than 10 days.  That's usually his outter limit for a diet of any kind.

A dieting diabetic dancing jigger.  Not sure it could get much funnier!

Hope you find something to smile about today!