The Perfect Doctor

… that’s all I need,

Someone who will answer all my questions, and care about me personally, and understand how my uniquely contradicting personality roles in diabetes care…

Yep.  He/She’s out there somewhere, and I just need to keep looking..

{We interrupt this search to bring you reality}

Last Wednesday, I drove to my NEW doctor in Willow Grove, filled with both calculated anticipation and trepidation.   This would be a step in the right direction, this would be the person who would understand me and politely listen and answer my questions.   I would have been better off hanging my hope for victory on a three-legged horse in the Kentucky Derby.  (Which I truly would love to visit for the sake of wearing a huge hat!)

I arrived early to my appointment at one of the quaintest little Dr. offices that I have ever seen.  It is part of a collection of cottage-looking professional offices set off the road surrounded by the color-stained Fall trees.  Idyllic.  THIS was the place where all my dreams would come true.  As I waited, I tried to think through a good explanation for why October was so horrendous for diabetes care… “I was SO busy, tired, etc…” “I usually do so much better, but…”

When I got sick of that, I just waited.

waited…

Finally, I was called back, weighed, blood-pressured, and what followed really doesn’t merit explanation.  It impersonal, rude, and condescending.

I bawled my eyes out in the parking lot like I have not cried for years.

Which is saying something.

So many emotions surging at once, how could I keep from crumbling under it? I had been hoping so high.  This would be the key.  The beginning of something wonderful.  But, it wasn’t.  Once again, a new doctor, and it wasn’t.

I called Ben and said things like, “I .. don’t.. want this!!” Waaa! “I feel so stupid” Waaa! “I will NEVER BE ABLE TO DO THIS.”  Waaa!  etc.. etc…

Somewhere in the middle there, I also said something like this, “I think all this was supposed to teach me that maybe a good doctor is not the answer.” (I’m still trying to hold on to the fact that good doctors might actually exist,.. but that is a conversation for another day.)  Couched in the lies I was telling myself about the situation was actually a bright beam of truth.   I thought about this truth during the days to follow, and it only became more concrete in my mind.

Who is the answer to great diabetes control?

I am the answer to great diabetes control.  I see a doctor every 3 months.  But I’m “in the trenches.” I’m the everyday go-to expert on myself–my motivations, my struggles, what helps me to be successful!  While other people join me–friends, family–the choices that I make, the food that I eat, the insulin I take, the carbs I count; these things are controlled by me.

Seriously, in the past week, I have been lovin’ the driver’s seat!  I have made intentional choices, intentional purchases, and intentional declines.

Who’s driving this thing?  This girl right here.

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Hey, Where are YOU from?

Perfect & Fun

These are my people–this is “back where I come from.”  On the itinerary of my “personality passport” it says, “Hometown Perfection, Frequent Visitor of Fun Country.”

Ben and I took a personality quiz a while back–we answered questions about what pumped us up, what disappointed us, what made us crazy.   We also figured out things like our top motivations in life; not necessarily what you’re good at, but what you really enjoy.  I came to a startling conclusion while reviewing the results of the test: my personality’s “home country” as the lingo of the quiz labeled it, is FUN!  I want to hear “it’s gonna be SO AWESOME”  “You’re gonna love this!”

 “WOOHOO” is one of my favorite words!

Ben’s home country was PEACE.  He spends a majority of his time here.  A huge canyon of space separates his home country, Peace, from his favorite vacation spot, Perfection.  So, he’s a steady-eddy who likes things in order.  Agreed.  This quiz nailed it for my B.

When it comes to my favorite vacation spot, there is not a canyon of space between–more like a revolving door–because I spend so much time there.  Destination?  Perfect Country.

It was hilarious when we were talking to Paul, who helped us talk about the results of our quiz because he turned to me and said, “Do you ever feel that those countries (Perfection & Fun)  are at war?  And all of a sudden, SO MUCH made sense to me!  I often feel a conflict within me of competing desires.  “The things I want to do, I don’t! The things I don’t want to do, I do”  comes to mind.  Everyone has the flesh v. spirit conflict within them, but this is not what I’m talking about here.  There is nothing inherently better or less sinful about either of these dispositions, they just don’t tango together very well.

I can clearly see how each of these sides to my personality take over at different times.  Some days, my house is picture-perfect.  Everything is neat and orderly.  Picturesque.  Other times, even days (Moments?)  later, there is chaos!  I like both because usually chaos = crafts.  :)  But some days, I just love the crazy mess.  Other days, I long for the order.

Perfect & Fun

I see this being especially frustrating in my journey with Diabetes.  I have spent some weeks recently being meticulous with carb counting, testing, meal times, and collecting data.  I loved those weeks.  It was fulfilling to put myself into something completely.  I felt great!  I had energy and strength.  I slept well, and I was happy to be doing something meaningful.  BUT those two weeks were SO HARD!  I was able to do it because I knew there was an end.  I was collecting data for a specific dr. appointment, so I knew the end was in sight.

I can live in Perfect Country with Diabetes.

As long as I can hop a plane to Fun any time I want.  But that’s not how Perfect works, is it?

It’s War.

I am currently in the process of processing this.

Resolved to a Relationship.

Have I bitten off more than I can chew?

You know all those “really fun” camp games where the announcer just asks for two volunteers and creates lots of hype surrounding the mystery activity–“someone is going to have more fun than a cat with a McDonald’s ball-place amount of yarn spheres, and it could be you who has all this fun!”  So you jump up and down and you cheer and you scream till your lungs shake and you try to contain your excitement when it is in fact you who is chosen?  There you are–up in front of everyone–ready to represent your team–anxious to find out what feat you must perform and be crowned victor for your team.  And suddenly, the stage hands bring out a circle of golden-crusted blueberries–a pie eating contest.  Yuck, you think to yourself.  I didn’t come to camp to snarf down baked goods.  It will be embarrassing to be up here in front of everyone devouring this lump of sugar and berries. I’m going to look ridiculous.  I do NOT want to do this and I DON’T want to be seen doing this.  Why did raise my hand again?  Why did I shout and jump up and down and draw attention to myself?  Why did I ask my friends to point at me and jump up and down and shout and draw attention to me?  Because now, here I am, all in front of everyone, on the brink of dashed expectations and disappointment.  Maybe I should have just sat in the crowd and let them choose someone else.  Someone more qualified and skilled at eating pie.  Someone who enjoys eating pie.  Someone who would not let the team down.  

Have I bitten off more that I can chew? 

      Well team, this is where I’m at (minus like everything involving camp). I’m feeling like I can’t do it.  And  now I have to fail in front of everyone!  I’m feeling like, “why did I draw attention to this?”  “Why didn’t I just keep my head down and try to figure this out on my own?”  In some ways, I love the pressure of people knowing about my diabetes and where I’m at.  I love the prayers and encouragement when I go to an appointment or as I’m trying out some new equipment.  But here, up in front of everyone, (the whole virtual world–theoretically, though I know just a little corner of my world reads this) I don’t want to let the team down!  By this, I don’t mean that I have thrown in the towel and I’m “NOT DOING THIS ANYMORE!”  I do mean that I feel very exposed and aware that others want me to be successful–“eat the pie, so we can win, Briana!  We’re all watching!”

My expectations of myself have been rather high.  I thought, go see a good doctor, have some accountability, (this blog, for instance) and a good attitude, and you’ll beat this thing!  I do have a systematic plan to work through, but I feel like I’m caught on number 3 in a list of 50!  I still hold on to this mentality that I need to balance all of it in perfect harmony (meal plans, diet, exercise, schedule, carb counting)  or I can do none of it.  My all-or-nothing personality and great if I’m in ALL mode.  It is so difficult for me to be satisfied with some success.  I haven’t let on how difficult the nutritionists’ suggestions have been to follow through and do!  I have only been successful to eat 45 carb meals at breakfast.  I have eaten a few lunches and dinners with a conscious effort to count carbs, but for most others I have been on the run or just not in the mood to eat and/or count!  Ugh.  So, I find myself wondering, do I need, like, smaller goals?  Do I just need to suck it up and DO IT?

I want to take some time to think about this.  I just wanted to let you know where I am at.

Meanwhile, my goal for tomorrow is to check before and after each meal and eat 45 carbs at 2 meals (at least).

Please don’t get the idea that I am super discouraged.  I’m not.

I just wish it were as easy as starting a blog and seeing a good doctor.

This can only be accomplished in a strength that is not my own.

A commitment that seeks for more than good health, but also obedience.

And a resolve to a relationship, not merely a “better living” resolution.

Wait a minute, I know JUST where to find those things! 

**CGM**

Yesterday, I went to visit the doctor’s office again!  Before, I thought that the doctor was talking about getting a whole new insulin pump, and my week-trial would be with a new insulin pump, but it was actually for a new CGM system.  CGM is stands for Continuous Glucose Monitoring — basically, it is a small device that goes partially under the skin with a small piece of technology (for lack of a better word) above.  The small catheter under the skin takes BG (blood glucose) readings every 5 minutes.  Through this, it is more possible to accurately track patterns in BG and prevent problems in either direction.  This technology will be especially helpful for me because it will help my doctor see my body’s specific patterns.  Also, I can see where by BG is headed: if I get a reading of 105 ^ ^ I would react differently than a reading of 105 > or with an arrow downward.  I can catch highs or lows before they happen.  This will be wonderful, if I am able to get it covered by insurance.  Some people may know that I have already tried something similar to this in the past, but discontinued use—it was NOT user friendly, and that is what my doctor was so adamant about!  I have only had it on since 1:00 pm yesterday, but so far I already like it much more than the previous one.

Here is a site that  explains more about the CGM I am using specifically.

http://www.diabetespumpcgm.com/dexcom-g4-platinum-cgm/?gclid=CJmh_PbHobMCFUWo4Aodnh4A7w

Even with the positive prospects of this new technology, I find myself a little overwhelmed with all of it.  I am still testing and keeping track of everything.  I’m not discouraged.  But I woke up at 56 (LOW!) then I covered as I usually would and it spiked to 388 ^ ^ (which means still rising) about 1.5 hours later, which literally was “explainable” going off of my actions (low-carb breakfast) alone.  It’s days like these that would derail me.  I am not, I will not give up!

I need strength today.

“Be strong and courageous.  Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”

Joshua 1:9 (ESV)

“Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears us up; God is our Salvation.”

Psalm 68:19 (ESV)