I have to send out a big thank you to Sheep Rustler from Melbourne who sent us 3 pairs of really cool safety pin earrings last week as a surprise gift - they arrived on the day of the diabetes diagnosis, so were a little ray of sunshine on that pretty awful day.
I wore this pair to the Knit 1 Blog 1 opening last night. Dotter wore the blue safety pin right through her ear (ie without the silver hoop!), and the set with tiny safety pins has been given to Barb at Craft ACT , for Lulu. I hope to get a photo of Lulu sporting her new jewellery soon (not that she deserves such generosity!).
I feel that since everyone has been so loving and kind this past week, and many of you have heard my radio interview (and hence know my real name), I may as well post the occasional photo of myself and Dotter (who already appears in person on her own blog). Sort of a thank you to you, if you will. So here we are the Knit 1 Blog 1 opening last night. I'm wearing my Vintage Hues scarf. Dotter is wearing her beret, and we're standing in front of our displayed works (the black labels were added by me in Photoshop, they're not 'real').
Progress on the Opal Toe-Up Socks - past the second heel, into the home stretch! Am completely converted to the magic loop method now.
Yesterday was really full on. Dotter and I woke pretty exhausted, but had to be back at hospital by 10am, when we had another 2 hours of 'education' sessions with Wendy and the nice doctor. Dotter gave herself her first injection - another hurdle passed. I have to learn how to do them too, erk, as do Hubby, Son, and Boyfriend. They gave us lots of stuff - a great book all about diabetes in children and teens (mainly about Type 1), the 2 insulin injecting pens (one for the slow-release, one for the fast-release), extra syringes in case the pens ever break, a backup blood sugar meter, and heaps more besides. Dotter was given a cool backpack, as well as a Diabetes Bear, which she actually really likes. It has felt patches sewn on to show where insulin injections can be given (thighs, tummy, bum, upper arms).
Then we had to go to Diabetes ACT to upgrade her membership on the National Diabetes Scheme (from Type 2 to Type 1), and buy more supplies - jellybeans, the ultra-fine needles to go onto the insulin pens (they're single use only), a bigger sharps disposal unit, blood ketone test strips, and so on. Then to the Chemist to get the insulin script filled - 5 packs of each of the 2 types of insulin, which have to be stored in the fridge.
At lot of the costs are subsidised by the government (free needles and insulin pens, free glucose meter, inexpensive test strips etc) but Dotter's Health Care Card has just been cancelled (when she turned 16), so the insulin cost us $90 instead of $9.40! I reapplied for a new card weeks ago, and we should be able to get a refund, fingers crossed, once they process our application.
Also got a GlucaGen Hypo Kit (in the bright orange case at the front right in the photo) - it's an emergency syringe of glucagon, in case Dotter is unconscious from low blood sugar, but can't eat, cos she's unconscious..., bit fucking freaked about that item. Haven't been shown how to use it yet, that will come next week, I suppose. Also skin cream for her dry skin (common in diabetics). Came home and collapsed for a while - just so sad and overwhelmed and exhausted by it all. Hubby's been sick in bed all week, too, with the flu and complications of severe CFS/ME, so I've felt like a single mum through all this so far.
So there you are - a small part of what you need to replace the functioning of your pancreas. A lifetime of daily blood tests and injections, of juggling what you eat and your exercise with how much insulin you need, of watching for the physical symptoms of hypos (low sugar) and hypers (high sugar), and adjusting, of looking for complications (nerves, eyes, feet, and more)... Here's hoping for a cure. We supported stem cell research before anyway, but now we REALLY support it.