Arnold Williams (notebuyer) wrote,
Arnold Williams
notebuyer

Becoming a Diabetic at 64 (Draft in progress)

Some things are expected. Some aren't. Being informed at 64 that you're a diabetic is one of the unexpected ones.

Providence St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica caught this problem. I thought I was coming in to deal with shortness of breath and a developing heart valve problem. My first clue should have been the peremptory instruction to check myself in at the Emergency Department, interrupting the Monday afternoon.

After quite a series of tests, I was moved to the intensive care unit, where they tried to put my system back together. They did a wonderful job, and started the process of explaining that although I had a heart valve problem, that wasn't the problem that needed to be addressed right now: the collapsed insulin-response system took priority.

Over the next several days, I learned to get blood sugar readings before meals, and take insulin shots to cover the expected food intake. It was an education. Finally, yesterday, I was sent home. Sadly, I was sent home with "One Touch" and "One Touch Ultra 2" blood sugar test kits, which failed immediately. After serious investigation, including taking them apart, the flaw was revealed: dead batteries, no chargers. Respnse: take into CVS to the photo counter, buy replacement batteries, and put them in. Now they work, and I have spare batteries. Still out of testers and lancets, but I'm sure I'll find them somewhere. Turns out what I have to do is call CVS locations until they say "yes" to the lancet question. Problem solved.
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