When my Lantus pen finally neared empty after my evening dose on Wednesday, I knew that I was just about ready to reconnect to my insulin pump.
Its been almost a month since I started this pump break, and it’s been just what I’ve needed to clear my head and feel a little more ‘free’ from my diabetes.
But I’m also beginning to feel a little over the effort required to physically inject my insulin, moreso at this time of the year.
When I was in the comfort of my own home with all the time in the world to spare, injecting wasn’t really a big deal. But when I was on the go and short of time, i was really starting to miss the convenience that wearing an insulin pump allowed me.
I really had to make a big point of injecting before I could go and have my morning tea or lunch. Which meant finding a place where I wouldn’t be disturbed, pulling out my iPhone, opening up the RapidCalc app, calculating my insulin dose and then concentrating on actually injecting it.
If I didn’t put all of my focus towards the task of actual injecting, I ended up with those annoying little drops that manifested on the end of my insulin pen. I was left wondering how much insulin actually went in, shooting out half a unit to compare while deliberating over whether or not I should top up.
In case you’re wondering, there is a technique to avoid this. Gently lift the skin beneath your injection site (don’t pinch), inject your insulin, hold the pen in for 15 seconds after the injection, release the skin and then pull the needle out. I’m not sure I’ve quite mastered it yet, but I have successfully revealed a few clean needles by using this technique.
Then there was the effort required to swap out blunt needles. Because they sure did hurt when I forgot to change them.
Injecting is a lot of effort to put in during my break when I really want to be savouring my coffee and Walkers Shortbread. Or when I’m in the car, trying to give a quick correction inbetween traffic light changes. Also in the middle of the night, when I actually have to switch on my lamp and physically get up out of bed to make sure I properly administer my correction dose.
I fully get that these are all first world problems, and I’m super grateful that I have the luxury and choice to choose the style of management that suits my needs.
On Wednesday evening before bed, I inserted a fresh pump site on my left side and loaded a fresh insulin cartridge. When I woke up on Thursday morning, I skipped my morning dose of Lantus and clipped my pump line into the clean infusion site on my hip. I rode out the day as the rest of my Lantus tapered off. By 3.30pm I thought I could safely switch my basal rate back on, and I was pumping insulin once again.
Hi Frank, I have been following your post for a while now but found this one really interesting. Going from pump to MDI. I have been pumping for 3 years now and it is second nature. Its almost too automatic. I have forgotten how to use injections. Reading your article I almost thought you would stay with injections. Please let us know how it is working for you now that you are back to pumping. Keep up the great writing. Look forward to each article.
I have always wondered how pens work. I have wondered if it left drops and now I know.