No Charge

I am currently on vacation.  As any D knows, there’s a lot of planning that goes into packing D supplies… getting prescriptions filled, double checking all your gear, bringing back-ups to your back-ups.

Things have changed in my diabetes world in the past 2 years.  Well lots of things have changed but the one that explains this post is that I have rechargeable devices.  These devices combined with all the other rechargeable, non-diabetes devices that may eventually lead to my mental demise.

1 charger didn't come on vacation.

1 charger didn’t come on vacation.

My current cast of mental demise making characters involve the following items: Macbook (1 charger), Kindle (1 charger that charges from Macbook), IPhone 5 (1 charger that charges from Macbook), Mophie case (to give Iphone extra charge so I don’t run out of power) (1 charger), Dexcom (looks EXACTLY like charger for Mophie case but they don’t work interchangeably) (1 charger), Verio IQ (charger looks like the old, old blackberry charger, 1 charger).

So yes, I should have 6 chargers with me on this trip.  I have 5.  I am missing the Verio IQ charger.  I am with most of my family.  I have ransacked their bags.  There are a ton of chargers.  3 different types of cellphone chargers, 4 different laptop chargers, one iPod charger, an iPad charger, and a Kindle charger.  There is NOT one charger out of all these items that will fit my Verio IQ.  THIS is a problem.

I was in Manhattan when hurricane Sandy struck.  I had plenty of time to prepare.  I had my to-go bags.  My dog had a to-go bag.  I reinforced my windows.  I had a flashlight.  I saved water.  I watched the news and worried UNTIL my power went out.  I kept texting my sister (a newbie Manhattanite).  I wanted her to stay safely inside and be prepared.  Power gradually diminished on my phone.  By “gradually”, I mean really quickly.  I did all the things you do to conserve power on your phone… turned off apps, reduced the brightness, turned off wifi.  The next morning my phone had barely any power.  My home had NO power. I could not reach my sister.  I packed-up and headed north.  I found power at Avis on 43rd street. They let me charge my phone.  My sister was ok and not evacuated (her whole neighborhood lacked power too).

I didn’t get power back for over a week.  When I say I didn’t get power back, I mean my home, office and gym, all the places I would have gone to charge stuff.  I stuck it out 3 days in my home but the lack of running water and the creepiness of my neighborhood eventually got the best of me.  The dog and I sofa surfed for 4 days.  I was constantly turning off my phone because I was concerned, when I was below Manhattan’s power line, I needed to save it for an emergency.  Although batteries were at a premium, I watched people with powerstrip cords charging all their gear at ATM terminals.  I pretty much decided that week that this rechargeable stuff may be “better’ for the environment BUT it is super stressful to me.

Chase Bank ATM - Manhattan above 42nd street

Chase Bank ATM – Manhattan above 42nd street

I saw someone with a T-Slim pump last week in my endo’s office.  I saw the pump for maybe 2 seconds.  Seeing the T-Slim being used in real life was cool.  Diabetes technology is cool.  A rechargeable pump would give me a friggin’ heart attack.  Seriously my stomach just did that knotty, No-No thing just thinking about it.

I gotta stop writing this post now.  I’m on vacation and have to figure out how I’m going to charge my glucose meter.  Give me a damn battery please.

 

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Verio cupid

Happy Valentine’s Day! It’s a great day to tell all the people who’ve been your support network (I’m talking to you DOC), just how very much you love and appreciate them!  xo

Diabetes Art Day 2013

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Thanks to Diabetes Art Day 2012, I expanded my designs for a OneTouch Ultra cast resin ring, to a series of used test strip rings and then OneTouch Ultra bangle bracelets.   In December I discovered my health insurance covered the Verio IQ meter (and those gorgeous gold and silver test strips have jewelry-potential written all over them plus the meter lights up in the dark).  I’ve now completed one necklace, cast using the plastic insert that held my Animas Ping pump securely in it’s shipping container (One man’s trash is another woman’s treasure right?).

postcard

Some photos of my test strip designs were used by OneTouch on their Facebook page for their coverage of Diabetes Art Day 2012 which was pretty cool.  There were people who commented the designs were ugly (I agreed, diabetes can be a really ugly disease) and people who actually thought I was wasting “good” test strips even though I pointed out that they were MY USED strips.  We all know the cost of test strips is daunting and we are also well aware of the amount of trash that comes with diabetes.  BG testing supplies, pump supplies, Dexcom inserters, and the packaging for all these items.

My goal with the jewelry (aside from challenging myself as a designer) is complex.  I read Diabetes Forecast’s article on Anatomy of A Test Strip and was intrigued.  I see beauty in test strips as not only a life saving device but also beauty as a product of technology, engineering and industrial design (my undergrad degree is in Industrial design and I launched a jewelry design business in 2009).

Back to my test strip jewelry goals… I have worn many of the pieces (especially the bangle bracelets on Blue Fridays).  I often find them to be a segue to conversations on diabetes much like my “blinged” Dexcom sensor was on my arm this summer.  If wearing some of my test strip designs gives me a chance to explain and educate and even bond with someone about diabetes, then great, bring it on.

I wore my Angled OneTouch Ultra ring to a T1 meet-up at my local JDRF chapter.  A woman came into the meeting, sat next to me and recognized the ring.  It was the first time someone said, “You’re Surfacefine”.  It was totally weird for me but this was the same woman who had asked about a foot issue months prior on Twitter.  I knew she lived in NYC and recommended my podiatrist (who I LOVE) and who also happens to be a fellow T1D.  We clicked immediately at the meeting and I was thrilled we got to chat in “real life”.  Way to go jewelry!

postcard

As an artist, making one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces intrigues me.  The majority of my professional life involves working in mass production.  The combination of mass produced diabetes equipment (specifically all the disposable items that have a one-time use), made into one of a kind mold and a one of a kind layered resin design fascinates me.

Since my supplies are used, I am now collecting stuff like crazy (read: I’m a hoarder x10).  The finishing work on these pieces is time intensive (which I love).  I have 4 molds I am currently pouring and utilizing used pump supplies along with test strips.  My used diabetes supplies have become my jewels (please note I still like diamonds).

As very special shout to Lee Ann Thill who started Diabetes Art Day, The Diabetes Postcard Exchange and writes The Butter Compartment.  You can read more about Lee Ann and her latest projects at her About Me .

Photo Week in Review

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From Top Left: Another pump site, another bruise.  This was earlier in the week but I had a site change this morning and once again… another site, another bruise.  This is starting to become my norm.  Site worked great though.  At least the bruises are small and this isn’t bikini weather!

Blood glucose check where an old pricked spot bleeds along with the new one.  there’s a cartoonish like quality to that, as if I will drink a glass of water and my (bruised) pump sites will look like a sprinkler.

New diabetes themed-used-Verio IQ-test strip jewelry.  The reaction this from the non-D crowd has been kind of awesome.  love hearing what people “think” the material is.  My account (T2) took a minute and guessed it correctly.

I woke-up on Thursday to this view.  Remote control, Glucolift (Wildberry is my fave) container (empty), Dexcom G4 reciever, Froggie, and my pooch (with creeptastic looking eyes in this pic).  A strange Wednesday night snuggle-fest indeed.

 

Wear it Well

Today I am D hidden. 3 of my D “accessories” are under my dress.  My pump is tucked into the left hip of my tights, my pump is connected to a pink Inset on my tummy, and there’s a Dexcom G4 sensor with some rhinestones on the back of my right arm.

Two people have commented on my necklace which is on full display.  Both thought it was some type of stone or quartz.  Nope.  It’s my used Verio IQ bg test strips (made into a pendant necklace).

There’s beauty everywhere.

verio cross

A quote I read the other day made me smirk:

“I’m tired of all the nonsense about beauty being only skin-deep. That’s deep enough. What do you want — an adorable pancreas?” -Jean Kerr

Photo Week in Review 1/21/13

Just some images that explain this week (and happy Friday).

Wk review 1.21

From top left: NEW D toys matched up for the first time since my robot self was upgraded in December.  I love that they matched at an awesome number (yes, I have doggie sheets).

My Dec G4 sensor was more OFF than stuck ON me by Tuesday.  I was waiting it out since I still hadn’t received new sensors and was growing concerned.  I’d only received 4 sensors with my initial shipment (unlike my 7+ where I got 3 boxes from the beginning).

Look what arrived!  Yep, a phone call and less than 48 hours and *presto*!  Sensors Ahoy!

It’s Friday which means Blue Friday and me taking off pics of myself at my desk.  Since it is FREEZING in my office, I will be wearing this cozy scarf all day and possibly gloves and my hat with ear flaps.

Moving Along

Look what I noticed while working on a new project tonight:

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That’s the bruise from the pump site I replaced yesterday at work.  It was hurting a little while at work.  I replaced it in a dimly lit conference room, wore 2 “sites” the rest of the day and removed the old one when I returned home.  Tonight I noticed the bruise.  My tummy was sticking out between my shirt and sweatpants.  I was sitting Indian style on my floor while working on a rather messy jewelry design project.  Rather messy is the nice way of saying “What-the-heck-happened-in-here?” and “This-will-never-truly-be-cleaned-up-will-it?”.  I wanted to pull down my sweatshirt but my hands were covered in stickiness (used a paper towel and a knuckle to take the pic).  I adjusted my shirt over my stomach and jumped right back into mess making 101.

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20 minutes later, I took a break.  Then I noticed it…. “NO!!!!!!!!!!”….Seriously, NO!

A pump bruise is nothing, but resin on my favorite, super cozy, softer than soft sweatpants???

NO!!!!!!!!

Imagepants