Taking a Break from TMI

I’ve recently had one of those experiences where you think you’ve done something totally stupid, and it turns out to be a blessing.

See, I had this stack of unopened brown Medtronic boxes sitting in the corner of my office. One would arrive at work (my home mailbox is too wee), I’d take it upstairs and stash it behind my desk, and when I was getting low on infusion sets or sensors, I’d bring a box home and crack into it.

I knew I was down to my last couple of sensors, and that I should check out one of the brown boxes in my office. So I did, and realized that they were all full of infusion sets — not a sensor to be found. I took a deep breath, and resigned myself to the fact that I’d be kicking it old-school for the next week or so: no every-5-minute updates on my blood sugar level, where it’s going and where it’s been. No alarms in the middle of the night to alert me to the fact that my blood sugar’s hit 201. No itchy tape pulling on my upper arm. Darn.

The thing about the CGM is that it’s addictive. It’s great to have access to this information whenever I need it, but it can be hard to stop checking in. It begins to feel like a burden, kind of like e-mail or texting or cell phones. In the same way that it’s hard to imagine life before Google, it can be hard to think of going a whole day — or even a few hours — without knowing exactly what those Baked Ruffles or that bowl of cereal is doing to my numbers. I’ve lived almost 20 years without getting constant updates on my blood sugar trends; a week without them (knock on desk) was not going to kill me.

I’ve had a crazy week at work, and looking back on it, I think that having a break from my CGM helped keep me a little saner. I just checked every few hours, and everything was pretty much okay. The world didn’t come crashing down around me. I didn’t lose any limbs. I even got all my work done and finished my time sheets and remembered to bring speakers to my presentation last Tuesday.

I wandered past the front desk about an hour ago, and there sat my new shipment of glucose sensors, packaged in their little brown box, ready to be inserted into my arm and start their sensing.

So while the weekend’s just beginning, it looks like my vacation’s over.

6 comments on “Taking a Break from TMI

  1. George says:

    You are so right. It is addicting. Watching those trends is like a show I cannot miss. I hate it when I don’t have a sensor on anymore.

    I had so many “weak signal” alarms with my arm that I have not tried it again. Is that a problem for you? I have minimed too.

    • Jacquie says:

      It’s not really much of a problem — depends on the sensor, though, and how long I’ve had it in. I don’t know if it helps at all, but I always try to keep my pump on the same side of my body as the sensor. So if my sensor’s in my left arm, I keep my pump in my left pocket.

  2. Seant0 says:

    LOL! You could not be more right about this. It’s almost like the car accident that you can’t turn away from. Great post.

  3. brigdon says:

    I’m annoyed with the constant updates and need a vacation..and I’ve only had mine a week…oh well! You deserve a vacation every once in a while…but you’re right..it’s always nice to just be able to look and know.

  4. FatCatAnna says:

    I’ve only used the CGMS once – back in 2008 – it wasn’t for me. I have tho’ taken a pump break since April so I can kind of relate to what you went thru’. I am finding I’m enjoying it so much being detached from Salvador (I do change that comment from time to time ) – that I am not sure if I’m going to go back to pumping. I’m having pretty good control without the pump, which I didn’t think I would. It’s just I’m still paying for this gadget until 2011 – so I really should be using it!

    The A1C in July will be the test of this holiday of mine, tho’. Wish me luck.

    One thing, because I work in the diabetic field – just taking a break from that is nice – not to have to think about diabetes 24! Tho’ I always seem to be lured back to my keyboard when I see someone needing help!

  5. Marcus says:

    I think this is a great point… A weird thing I’ve noticed about myself is that I get nervous about sleeping without a CGM now (I’ve been on the Dex over a year) even though I haven’t missed waking up from a low in 20+ years. While the CGM gives me better data, it’s making me trust myself a little less and I’m not certain that’s all good.

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