The Road to Diabetes

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The Road to Diabetes

By Lori Lynn

Hello, my name is Lori Lynn and I’m a sugarholic. Chocolate is my drug of choice. “I need the energy.” I explained to my coworkers as I used to pour more sugar than coffee into my cup. Alas, those were the good ole’ days.  Before I started turning ‘brown’.

The first problem I became aware of was a dark line on the back of my neck. Let me tell you it is very hard to see the back of your neck.  Being a single mom I had no one else looking at the back of my neck either.  So by the time it was discovered it was very dark. I tried scrubbing to no avail. By this time I had also noticed darkening under my arms as well as other places. I had noticed the under arm darkening of course but just acquainted it to not shaving as often as I should.  Hello, single!

I discussed it with my mom who suggested maybe it was because of my weight. Ok, yes I admit I am extra cuddly but I don’t think it’s normal to turn brown even for fat people.

Anywho, I decided to go to the doctor to get checked out. Since it was a skin problem, I choose a dermatologist. Makes sense right? I arrived with extra time to fill out my paperwork. Signed in, sat down. Waited two seconds until they called me back up. I had forgotten it was Friday. Company shirt day. Answering a barrage of questions relating to my company I got the paperwork and sat back down to fill it out.

I was then called to the back where I explained to the nurse I was turning brown. She just starred at me and then I waited for the doctor. Doctor was very excited as I explained my problem.  I showed him my neck and he wanted to see the “other” brown parts. I relented and showed him my under arms he could imagine the rest.

He then goes on to explain in GREAT SCIENTIFIC detail how my body is storing insulin in my skin and my pancreas can “blow up” at any moment. He can prescribe Retin A for the brown areas which is very expensive and has a 10% chance of helping. I declined, he wrote me out a note to bring to my regular doctor.

Like a good patient, I visit my primary physician and present my note. He asks me what it says since he can’t read the scribble either. I tell him I’m turning brown and my pancreas is a ticking time bomb. He leaves the room to call my dermatologist. He comes back later to inform me that I either have a problem with my pancreas or a malignant stomach tumor both can cause those symptoms.

I ask if I can pick one and he ignores me as he orders some blood tests and a MRI.! Have you ever had an MRI? I was unable to do an open (wimpy) MRI I had the iron lung MRI machine. The one were they bury you alive. Thanks to my vivid imagination, I pulled through and had my organs put on a CD to boot.  I love modern technology.

I called back for the results and was told my MRI was fine so no stomach tumor but my insulin level was off the chart. (My BLOOD SUGAR level was fine, go figure.) They said that he wanted to put me on a medication and reevaluate me in two months. I asked for an afternoon appt so I would not miss too much work. I was informed that there were no appointments scheduled in the afternoon but they could not schedule an afternoon appt unless there were other afternoon appointments. I explained patiently that If she put ME on the afternoon schedule there would be an afternoon appt and therefore she could schedule other people in the afternoon. She refused. I again explained that if she NEVER scheduled any afternoon appts they would NEVER have any afternoon appts ever due to their stupid scheduling protocol.

Again she refused to schedule me an afternoon appt. Ok. I informed her that I now did not want an appointment with them at all.  I wanted DR to refer me to an Endocrinologist asap before my pancreas explodes.  She would have to check with doctor and call me back. Needless to say, I got my appointment with the specialist. Thank goodness for Healthcare freedom!

The specialist was wonderful she drew half the blood in my body for labs and ordered a spit test to test my cortisol levels. The spit test can only be done at midnight so I stayed up and pogo’ed until it was time to spit. She diagnosed me with insulin resistance and put me on some new meds and a diabetic diet. Let me tell you the diabetic diet sounded suspiciously like south beach.

The new meds made me extremely dizzy so she reduced the dose and set me up with a test kit to keep track of my blood sugar level. After an hour at the pharmacy trying to figure out all the different things I needed I decided to test first thing in the morning as recommended. I figured out the needle gun and puncture my finger as I filled up the test strip and inserted it into the machine. I sucked the blood off my finger as I waited for my result. Error. Miffed I pick up the directions and read them. Okay I inserted the test strip FIRST waited for the blood sign, punctured my finger again, milked my blood into the test strip and was rewarded by a result. 97. Is that good? I don’t know I’ll have to google it.

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