My Diabetes Medication Failed Me

You know it is funny when we are always shocked when we find out that something is wrong with our health?

I mean like we couldn’t see that coming with the double cheese burgers, fries, pizza, and let’s not forget chocolate that we scarf down in less than thirty minutes before we go back to our desks to sit on our butts for another four hours. Then we go home and shove something else down our gullets while watching the latest crime show on TV sitting on the couch or laying in bed until we fall asleep—only to get back up and drag our butts out of bed to do it all over again.

Okay maybe that wasn’t your life, but it certainly was mine.

I blame the invention of the remote controlled TV because at least if I didn’t have a remote I would have to get up to change the channel.

Oh who am I kidding? Even if I didn’t have a remote I would probably just move my chair closer to the TV so I wouldn’t have to get up to change it.

The thing is, my being overweight and developing health problems didn’t happen instantly and it sure as hell is not going to change instantly!

Being of a stubborn mind, and because I grew up in a house hold that stuck by the “throw a pill at it and everything will be just fine” mantra I wanted results right away.

I know—stupid—but, I thought that was what was going to happen when the doctor prescribed me with my two new pills to control my diabetes.  They were Metformin and Glipizide by the way.

Now to give the doctor credit, he said “You need to change your diet and exercise along with taking these pills and your diabetes will stay in control.”

That whole phrase stayed in my head for about two weeks before gradually the part about changing my diet and exercising began to be forgotten and the part about taking the pills will control your diabetes stayed.

Isn’t it weird how when we are in dire need of help we seek out the attention of a medical doctor, but when the doctor says something we don’t want to hear we conveniently forget it.

That is exactly what I did for two years.  I instead of losing weight, I gained about 75lbs.

Yeah, crazy huh?

I can’t believe it now either, but at the time it was like I went into destruct mode and ate everything I could because I had this back up of little pills that I took twice a day.

Then one day it was like I had the veil lifted and I realized that I was 352lbs, had swelling feet, was exhausted all the time, and I had constant headaches.

It took really looking in a full length mirror at my mother’s house (I didn’t even own one in my own) that I came to the realization that the backup plan of the pills was not working at all.

Type 2 Diabetes Death Sentence

rip-tombstone-mdI woke up one afternoon in 2007 with a blinding headache. The kind of headache that you would happily poke a screw driver through your eyeballs if you thought that it would relieve some of the pressure.  I immediately ran to the bathroom and lost all that was left of the contents of my stomach.

The whole time that I was laying in the floor, I was negotiating with God about how if he would just let my head explode that I would be okay with that.

After all, I had lived a good life as a good person and I didn’t hate small crumb snatchers—except for the ones that scream at the top of their lungs in restaurants and threw things into your hair as you are trying to enjoy your meal.

Come on, you all know that you want to kill their parents too because after all they are the ones that are letting them do it, right?  Mainly I just want to go up and punch one of the parents in the face.

This, I guess in my delirium, was my way of making peace with my maker.

Or really just negotiating with him!

I even pointed out that I was good to the elderly and animals.

Even when the neighbor’s dog would come over and shit in front of my steps and I would step in it on my way out the door to work. I didn’t kill him.

The dog—I mean, the neighbor, well that is a whole other blog!

Anyway I digress, while I was writhing in pain on the bathroom floor it occurred to me that being a long time sufferer of what my doctor likes to call a” pre-diabetic” that maybe I should check my blood sugar.

So I crawled to get my meter which luckily I kept in the bathroom for some strange reason.

When the meter read I thought it was wrong. 328!

No f-ing way.

I prick another finger thinking that maybe that the blood from the other finger had to be wrong.  Sure enough 327!  I even tried another meter! Same results. Holy shit I was in trouble.

Normal blood sugar is 80 to 120! Mine was definitely not normal.

I called my mother who is a nurse and also a diabetic and she told me to call my doctor immediately.  Apparently my blood sugar being over 300 was a bad thing because they told me to come in right away and they would work me in—which you know means you are close to death because at most doctor’s offices you could have one of your arms falling off and they would tell you they could maybe work you in sometime next week if you are lucky.

As I am sitting in the little patient room, I am staring at these posters with the headlines like “Diabetes is a dance with death” and “Diabetes increases your risk of a stroke.”

Why the hell couldn’t I have gotten into the “you are going to die if you have cancer room” they didn’t know I could have had a tumor or something.  Either way I was glad that the doctor came in fairly quickly because I was starting to feel like I may be having a stroke. My heart was pounding making my chest hurt and I could have sworn my arm was numb.

I know when the doctor came in, he could tell by the look on my face that I was scared shitless.

He said that from the looks of my blood work, which at this point I couldn’t even remember them taking, I have graduated to a type 2 diabetic.

Graduated?! What the hell kind of way of telling someone they have type 2 diabetes is that.  I graduated? Do I get a freaking diploma? Something I could hang on the wall!

I think I might have said these comments out loud judging from his face, but I didn’t care because all I heard was blah blah blah diabetes….you are going to die.

He politely ignored my comments.

He explained that my blood sugar was too high to control with diet anymore so he was going to prescribe me some medication to help control it.  I of course was glad that he didn’t mention a medication that involved a needle, but my mind was still reeling with the thought of me being a diabetic.  I know what it can entail because I grew up with a mother that has diabetes.

I also knew that if not kept in check that the complications from type 2 diabetes could result in dire consequences. Hell even the poster said that!

I also knew that it was mostly my fault because I had been warned that if I didn’t keep up with a good diet then this would happen.

Even knowing all this I still had to ask if I could have another chance with changing my diet.  The doctor then explained that if I didn’t take the medication that I could very well die because it was too far gone now to just control it with diet.

I knew that! I just didn’t want to admit it.

I didn’t and still don’t want to be a type 2 diabetic, but it took going down this road to make me wake up and realize that you can’t take these things lightly.

I learned that you can’t just keep telling yourself it won’t happen to me because guess what? It happened to me even though I kept telling myself it wouldn’t.

The sad thing is looking back, after I calmed down all the signs were there. I had the headaches, I had to go pee all the time, and I had that iron taste you get in your mouth just to name a few.

I knew all the symptoms of diabetes because of my mother, but what did I do? I just ignored them and according to the doctor if I hadn’t taken my blood sugar and came in to see him, I could have ignored it right to the grave.

Sadly though it took more than this scare to put me on the path to good health, but that is a whole other blog post.

On a positive note though, I didn’t die as evidence of this post and the most important thing is I did not step in dog shit this morning.

It’s a good day.

Admitting I’m Fat is the First Step To Recovery

My name is Nsunriseae, and….I am fat….morbidly obese, actually.  I am 44 years old, stand 5’ 2” and I weigh 281.4 lbs.  Oh, and did I mention that I am lazy?   I haven’t always been overweight.  In high school, I weighed 110 lbs. soaking wet, and was very active.
Since graduating from high school, I have struggled with my weight on and off.  I am currently the heaviest I have ever been, and am thoroughly disgusted with myself.  I have health issues such as high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, anxiety, and a seizure disorder.  I have problems with my joints, and calcium spurs in my feet. In other words, I’m a hot mess.  I am a huge couch potato who loves to play video games and watch TV.  And eat.  I have a wonderful spouse who is also overweight and is diabetic, lactose intolerant, and has gastroparesis and anxiety issues.  My spouse had lost over 100 lbs., but the stresses of work and some family crises has caused her to gain back around 62 lbs. of that weight. We both want to change our lives and become healthier individuals.  It is just hard to get the momentum going to make that change. 

But, I think I am ready. And, I think she is too. I will try to record our journey here in order to help others who are going through similar issues find the encouragement and courage to make the changes necessary for a healthier lifestyle.