Yesterday I had my quarterly appointment with my endocrinologist. (I’ve never referred to it as quarterly before but since it occurs every 3 months or 4 times a year, I guess it qualifies as a quarterly event!) For some reason I was unusually calm beforehand. Well maybe except for those very few minutes before she entered the exam room. I went without any BG readings for her to review, thanks to my recent meter switch, and felt very guilty. And still, my 128/75 blood pressure reading reflected my calmness. (side note: my BP is always higher than that due to my nervousness) We went over all things diabetes related and all seems well. I have a Nerve Conduction Velocity test scheduled in 3 weeks but that’s another story.
One of the reasons I dread my endo appointments each time is not due to the dr herself. Or the office. It’s simply the a1c. Since I have been putting forth a much greater effort into my diabetes management, my a1c readings have weighed greatly on me. My result yesterday was 7.0%. Down from 7.2% three months ago. Dr. K is pleased with that and considers it good control. Since using the Dexcom CGMS continuously (no pun intended!) over the past two years, my a1c has remained pretty stable around the 7.0% mark. It is the lowest level I have ever had in my 29+ years of living with diabetes. And while I’m satisfied with this value, I need to work on it a little more to try and it get it a tad lower. To a value that I’m actually happy with. Satisfied is good. Happy is even better.
(photo credit goes to Yoshikazu Nagai)
It’s been a hectic few days for me. My home area was hit with a tornado last Thursday evening, leaving us without power for three days. Joe and I spent the weekend looking after my niece + nephew which was the best time ever, but if you’re not used to having children in your care, it’s exhausting 🙂 Then the anticipated visit with my new endocrinologist this afternoon.
I was seeing my old endo for about 10 -11 years. She’s the first “adult” endo I saw ever. My diabetes management has changed so much for the better since I first started going to her and she saw me through it all. She knew me. We worked well together. When I found out Dr. R was leaving the practice I was very upset. She moved to another practice in a different borough so it wasn’t too practical to follow her. Plus I have a good relationship that I’ve built over the years with the office staff and educators. I decided to stick with the practice and see her replacement. My first appointment was today. I was so freakin nervous to meet this new doctor. I had no idea what to expect. But overall the visit went well. I had to keep reminding myself that this new doctor doesn’t know me, she doesn’t know my history and has different practices than what I’m used to. That being said, my a1c was 6.9 which is around what I was expecting based on my 9o day Dexcom average of 139. (My meter averages were 112-125 but that just goes to show what you don’t see when not testing) When I was brought to the lab to get a flu shot, but not blood work (strange no?) I looked at the paper she gave me with the diagnosis codes. And I couldn’t believe my eyes:
I think that is the first time I’ve ever been “classified” as a person with controlled type 1 diabetes! I don’t know the criteria for using the different categories but this was a first. And one that made me grin. But then I started to think what does controlled really mean? Sure my a1c has improved but do I still have high and low blood glucose readings? Hell yeah. One of the definitions of control in the dictionary is power to direct or determine. Do I necessarily feel like I have the power to direct or determine my bg? I certainly wouldn’t say so. Sometimes maybe but most of the time not. I guess I’m doing some things right since my status has changed and I will continue to do what I’m doing. But what I’d love to know is type 1 diabetes really controllable by the definition of the word?