Thursday, January 8, 2009

Diabetes Education

Wednesday we had our first diabetes class.

August 27th Jay wrote:

Poke poke

Bean's NP scheduled an appointment for us at 2:00 with the hospital Diabetes Instructor. Under the impression that someone would know where the instructor was, I showed up at 1:55, to find out that I was mistaken. The only thing anyone could tell us was that she was on the third floor.

The third floor is BIG.

I was a man on a mission, so when the first person I asked for directions had no idea where to look and disappeared, I left Fay (who didn't want to appear rude by leaving before she got back) and found someone who did. Instructor located, I went and found Fay and we got started.

I took my blood sugar with the lancet. (112.) It took me 3 tries of increasing lance depth to get enough blood. Turns out the sides of the fingers have less nerves, which was news to me. I will have to let those clowns at the Red Cross know about that next time; they always jab the center for their tests when you donate blood.

Then we learned how to give insulin shots, practicing on an orange first. Then I gave Fay one in the back of her arm, and she returned the favor. Surprisingly, puncturing skin does feel like puncturing an orange -- a little resistance at first, then it slides in smoothly. The needles are tiny, much smaller than the ones you'd use for your immunization shots. Feels like a bee sting, only it fades away faster of course. Fay almost wondered why Bean makes such a big deal out of it, but he doesn't have nearly as much fat as we do which probably makes things more painful.

So this was Step One towards getting Bean home. Nobody is willing to make a prediction yet, only repeating that he can go home "when he's stable." But this is a Very Good Sign. Just in time, too; having to choose which of her kids to be with is really taking a toll on Fay.

On the "hospitals make you count your blessings" note: as I left, I saw a little girl Missy's age zipping along in her walker, minus her left leg. I tried not to stare, but when she and her dad had passed, I turned and watched for a minute.
Both of us felt much more optimistic and cheerful after the class.  A very good sign indeed!

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