My husband has Type 2 diabetes and it has had a huge effect on our lives in so many ways. His health is important, and he had been doing his best to manage his blood sugar through insulin injections. Over the years we have had the opportunity to see how diabetes changes his life, wellbeing and behavior. What I once thought was him being stubborn, or just plain moody, was really his disease affecting more than just his blood sugar. It was changing the man I married from the inside out and not in a good way.
This all changed for us this past year. We had an angel come into our lives and fit my husband with an insulin pump. Coincidence or divine intervention just happened to bring me a new friend who is a pharmacist. We had struck up a conversation that lead to the fact that she worked with diabetic patients and insulin pumps! She generously offered to see if she could help my husband and we jumped at the opportunity. At first, we were both nervous but excited! This machine oversees dispensing lifesaving medication in very specific doses! Do we dare trust a machine? We had a lot of questions but we’re hopeful.
My husband had been doing research on pumps for years but had all but resigned to the fact he was never going to get one, because his previous doctor had told him so. He was told insurance probably would not cover the pump that was over $8,000.00 not including all the accessories and medication. Since the climbing astronomic cost of insulin hits us every month, coupled with high deductibles, saving for a pump was out of the question. He had all but given up.
I am telling you this story because I just cannot get over the difference this insulin pump has made in my husband! Because he feels better, it has made a significant improvement in our lives together. Before we got married my husband was funny, witty and great company. Years after his diabetes diagnosis, he was still having trouble keeping his blood sugar numbers from skyrocketing and this affected nearly everything.
His health began to slowly decline along with his attitude about life and he just seemed to be sick and miserable more often than not. For years we lived this way, it’s not easy to feel like crap all the time and keep up with life; stress was through the roof and slowly this long term, hard to manage disease also worked a slow wedge into our relationship. Although we didn’t even see it until he got this insulin pump!
Just a month after being on the insulin pump, that allowed him to keep his blood sugar at more regular level rates, the miraculous difference in my husband’s behavior was like night and day! He was feeling better and feeling more in control of this disease. Because the pump lets him see for himself exactly what each food, he ate was doing to his blood sugar. The real time monitoring of his numbers keeps him on track and accountable, while being able to make the needed adjustments that he once did not understand.
My husband is a very smart person, he is great with numbers and conceptualizing what it is he needs to do to be healthy. But without this pump, he had no facts to go off for years! It was just trial and error over and over again and that just lead to frustrations, spikes and dips, anger and even feeling like giving up some days. The diabetes education he received when diagnosed was mediocre at best. After meeting our pharmacist friend/angel, ten years later, he has learned a great deal more of what he needed to stay healthy. I remember him even saying to me “I wish I would have known all of this when I was diagnosed ten years ago!”
I think to myself, how many other people are in this same situation, with just enough information to keep them alive but miserable and hemorrhaging from their bank accounts because of this? Diabetes affects a huge number of people! Are they all walking around with minimal information, feeling like crap because of what they don’t know? How is it that patients don’t qualify for a life-changing insulin pump because they can’t get through to insurance companies?
This makes me so darn mad, and so darn grateful, we have been lucky enough to meet this person who changed my husband’s life for the better in a very short amount of time! Because he can manage his blood sugar numbers better, he feels better! Because he feels better, he is happier, and his mood has improved immensely. I have the man I married back! This is lifesaving and life-changing stuff and I want to holler it from the mountain tops!
I don’t know how we go about changing this way of insurance companies who seem to play God with people, depriving patients of life improving technology. Is it because some doctors don’t know enough about the disease or because they don’t have time to deal with cantankerous insurance companies? Maybe that’s my anger talking but I think we need to start somehow and some way. I am doing so by sharing our story with you. If you have been denied, I would try and try again, if an insulin pump is something that you or a loved one needs.
From my heart to yours. Do not give up! It is worth the effort. This insulin pump was quite literally a miracle healing for my husband and our relationship. Because it happened slowly through the years, we did not see just how much it had taken a toll on just about everything in his life. Until he started feeling better, we had just gotten used to who he was; being sick and tired all the time. This is not who my husband is! I am beyond thankful I got him back.
My hope is that by sharing our story of how diabetes has affected my husband and our family, will help others in the same boat. I know you are out there, and I empathize with the life encompassing struggle. Don’t give up! I wish for you or your loved one to be blessed with a miracle too!
Wishing you love and blessings,
Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister
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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister