November 19, 2011

Definition of D-Love

We attended the 10th annual Diabetes Youth Foundation of Indiana annual dinner gala on Friday night.

While Mike put in a normal workday at his office, I had the day off work and spent the entire day in downtown Indianapolis helping set up for that night's activities. Evening came and we had a great time. He's a board member so we did what we could to help out, putting our volunteer hats on to make sure everything went smoothly. Much fun was had, and money raised to help our local Camp Until A Cure.

Our camp director lives a couple hours away and had previously booked a room for the night at the hotel where the gala was being held, but it turned out she couldn't use it so she let us stay there. We sent Riley to a"dog-sitter" the night before and were all ready for the mini-vaca, and after the volunteering we were about ready to call it a night about 11 p.m.

That's where the adventures began. Our night was an interesting experience and I think that entire day and night is evidence of how I was able to prove once again what the definition of love is for a loving and supporting D-Wife:

- In support of your husband, you work all day to setup for a diabetes fundraiser and then work an "interesting" auction pickup, despite only having a few hours sleep the night before because you went to see the midnight showing of a new Twilight movie. (Starbucks helped!)

- You spend your money at the auction supporting the diabetes camp and organization, by buying a deluxe box of cheese that contains seven different blocks of cheddar varieties. All in the name of your husband, a self-proclaimed member of the #cheeseslut clan.

- As you wind down for the evening, you realize your husband's blood sugar is Low and the only edible items in the room are several blocks of cheese and two tubes of glucose tabs. So you opt to go find something to eat and drink, yet there are no food vending machines on the floor. The elevator's are occupied by the hundreds of teenagers staying in the same hotel and riding them up and down, so you resort to the stairwell and find that most of the floors below yours on the 15th floor are closed off because of construction. You walk up and down 14 flights of stairs, and about mid-way your husband's CGM starts vibrating repeatedly in warning that he's Low. You learn that he was in the 60s before the stair-descent even began. Finally at the ground floor, no vending machines are found and the only option is a bar that's now closed and has no food, yet a friendly bartender provides a complimentary plastic jar of orange juice. We head back to the elevator and find our way back upstairs.

- We were thirsty but something was wrong with the water faucet in the bathroom, so you decide to go find the single soda machine on the floor to get a bottle of ice water. But when pushing that button, you instead get a bottle of regular Dr. Pepper. It costs $2, and only debit card is allowed.

- Returning to the room, it's now 85 degrees. The earlier attempt to cool the room down apparently isn't working, mostly because heat is shooting out of the vents instead of cool air. A call to the front desk, and Mike's 15-minute conversation with the front desk complaining about the room temp, elevator-stairs situation, and vending machine confusion. An engineer arrives at the door and investigates, and informs you a switch in some remote part of the hotel was actually on "heat override." He fixes the problem and also points out the water situation was part of that same issue, and it's now resolved. Someone also arrives at the door to provide a few bottles of "chilled" water, except that it's room temperature. We don't complain and drink it anyhow.

- The CGM and an accompanying BG tells Mike he's now in the 200s thanks to that bottle of orange juice and some cheese, and he opts to go to sleep. It's after midnight. But even though he falls asleep quickly, you don't - in large part because the Dexcom on the nightstand won't be quiet and keeps vibrating and beeping.

- Just before 3 a.m., the CGM starts beeping because no one had been listening to it vibrate. Finally, a restless Mike wakes up, realizing something isn't right. The signs of a Low are evident: cold, sweaty, confused, indecision. Refusal to test. He does, and sees a 39 mg/dL. We resort to the glucose tabs, but know there's nothing else in the room to eat for long-term effectiveness. A phone call to the front desk gets us new information that there's actually a food-vending machine on the 6th floor, despite there being no signage anywhere else in the hotel telling you that. You leave your husband on the bed eating glucose tabs, while going downstairs with your debit card at 3 a.m. to buy Cheez-Its, Nutter Butter Bites, and some peanut butter cheesy crackers. As if there wasn't already enough cheese in the room... Oh, and you get some orange frosted Hosted cupcakes for yourself as a reward. Because, you know, after all that your non-diabetic BG is Low, too.

- By the time you return, Mike's rising into the 100s with straight up CGM arrows thanks to the tube of glucose tabs. He eats some of the Nutter Butters and Cheez Its, and a couple bites of one of the cupcakes for good measure. Then, it's back to sleep. Breakfast is in three hours.

- In the morning, his BG was in the 300s. We got everything packed up and headed out, grabbing the car from the way too costly valet-service and then heading back to our area to pick up the dog and enjoy the rest of the weekend. With our new box of cheese.

Oh, the things we do for love, in the name of diabetes. Or is it the other way around...?


  1. You definitely have good taste in cheese! We like Cabot, too. Kudos to you that you were both able to "survive" the gala. We have found traveling with diabetes is ALWAYS a challenge, as there is always something happening that you didn't plan on.

    Take care,


  2. This is a beautiful post! Love the way you've written it!

    I was wondering if you would you be interested in sharing your articles with other like- minded individuals to educate, inform and converse with those living with Diabetes.

    We are building an online community containing links to informative articles about the issues around Diabetes.

    If you are interested and want to learn more about this, please send an email to


  3. Wow. You actually 'get' my life. I can tell by reading this. I am Kate, married to a type 1 diabetic for 14 years, and he was diagnosed 28 years ago at age 12.

    I came searching for blogs b/c recently things have been hard again. Funny how sometimes I can deal with it easily and other times are harder. A few years in to our marriage I was calling 911 almost monthly for lows that left him unconscious and often focal seizing. He got a pump 2 years ago and things have been better, although not perfect.

    A couple months ago he had a major incident. He was low, unconscious, I called 911. They gave hinm glucose and as his eyes started to clear and com ein to focus he went completely ballistic. Crazy. They had to call for backup, he didn't know who he was or we were and was fighting for his life. 6 police cars, 4 ambulances and a couple fire trucks later he was tasered 3 times and handcuffed to get him to the hospital. He sent 2 medics to the ER with injuries.

    He stayed delirious for 14 hours. 103 fever, blood pressure 80s over 20s. After many tests and discussion, this was a rare side effect of hypoglycemic episode. Fabulous. 14 hours from the start he just 'woke up'. Fever broke, all was well, he doesn't remember a thing. Excited Delirium. Usually a post mortem diagnosis after dying in police custody b/c coming off drugs or alcohol (of which none were in his system). Has happened to diabtics though. Hallmark of it is elevated temp and super human strength. It was traumatizing to watch to say the least and terrifying not to know whether he woudl know me or the kids every again. And it could happen again.

    Just this week he went to endocrinologist. sugar was 160 at 4pm. By the time he walked in door at 5:15 pm it He had driven the kids. Ugh. So much stress. 2 days later he was sleeping on the couch before I went to work. He had knee surgery and had trouble getting comfy the night before. I almost let him sleep but last minute check on him. Sygar was 28. If I had left, kids woudl have found him dead.

    He now has a continous glucose monitor but they can't get him in for training for 3 weeks. He is trying to calibrate it but numbers are not reliable yet. I am hoping it is the miracle I am looking for to give me peace of mind and more sleep at night.

    Some stories of living with a diabetic are funny, some are scary, some are sad. I have often thought that his major low episodes (I have called 911 over 40 times) are harder on me and/or kids b/c we have to watch them. He doesn't remember it at all and just feels yucky afterwards.

    Anyway, it's nice to share my story with someone who may understand my life a bit. You haven't been on here in a while but I hope you come back. It's nice to feel not so alone.

    God bless, Kate

  4. Hi I’m Heather! Please email me when you get a chance! I have a question about your blog. HeatherVonsj(at)gmail(dot)com

  5. I just saw this. Yup. Thats our life! :) xoxo

  6. Hi,

    My name is Aaron Capp I have written several cookbooks for diabetics. But what I would like you to help me promote the writing a new book call "Fighting Kids Type 1 Diabetes" The book is about helping parents cope with Type 1 diabetes as well as looking for ways to help prevent it. 60% of the profits from the book will be for diabetic research the other 40% will be for production and promotion of the book. If you promote this book on your blog I would be happy to acknowledge your efforts in the book. You will find more information at:

    Hope You Have a Great Day
    Aaron Capp