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How? It was a constant difficulty and a continual source of pain, 
both physical and psychological. 

Rose, I'd buy you a box of ultra-fine needles, a couple of 
bottles of saline, and all that - you just have to sign a contract 
that for the next 90 days you'll listen to a tape every few hours 
that talks about how injections hurt.  Then every 4 hours, day or 
night you get to get up and give yourself a shot...  

Oh, did anyone ever tell you that about 25% of the needles are 
slightly dulled during the manufacturing process...  and about 3 to 
5% seem to have small burrs that you can see with a magnifying glass 
- and those burrs act like the barbs on a fishing hook...  all the 
variations are within quality control limits but still cause pain.  
I've talked to the major manufacturers and they all are still working 
to improve the needles.

I'm 40, college education in Engineering Physics & Computer Science, 
additional training from my preparations as a minister (Baptist, 
SBC)...  and it sometimes  took me thirty minutes to take a shot 
back when I was on MDI.  Hard talk like you sent above 
shows that you are apparently one of the few adults in our society 
who has no phobias, fears or discomforts.  It's not a matter of being 
a "weenie" or not - it is a matter of being able to deal with 
inflicting pain on yourself, fear of the needle, and other things 
mixed in with those.  It isn't rational and sometimes isn't 
controllable.  One CDE that I talked to sounded a lot like you - 
she talked about how easy it all was...  I later talked to her and 
someone had convinced her to try it for three days...  she quit 
telling patients that insulin injections don't hurt.  It's not a 
matter of "bravery" - The needle discomfort that many diabetics have 
or develop aren't helped by the depression that most diabetics 
face... and the fact that repeatedly inflicting pain on yourself is 
not an easy thing to do.  

Tell us what your fears are - and I'll bet there are people on the 
list who would call you a "weenie" for not just "bucking up" and 
forgetting that fear.   I have a lot of admiration for Ravi - he's 
got a long (hopefully very long!) struggle ahead of him.  He appears 
to be ahead of the game.  I hope you never call him a "weenie" when 
he develops some of those normal adolescent fears and insecurities.  

> To those of you on this list that are anticipating the pump, don't let
> something like the size of the needle stop you.  It's not like you have
> to use that needle 4-5 times a day.  The pump has huge benefits over
> injections, give it a chance.

For some of us the fact that we don't have to face that needle 4 to 6 
times a day any more is one of the great things about the pump.  I 
can handle it taking me a while to put the infusion set in every 
three days - but when I had to take the same amount of time six times 
a day it took a major chunk of time and effort.  The sof-serter makes 
it possible - I haven't been able to bring myself to being able to 
insert it manually...  

I've seen this in non-diabetics too, like this spring when I was on a 
retreat with a multi-denominational group.  I took my shot at supper 
on Saturday, sitting at the table, and heard a big ol'boy down the 
table say "He's taking a sho..." as he started to pass out... and 
that was just from watching me!  Just think what he'd face if he had 
to give himself shots...  

> Just my $.02 worth!
> "Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!"
> Rose(aka Ravi's mom) Ravi, 10 pumping since 10/23/97 dx'd 8/12/94

Merry Christmas.  Keep cheering for Ravi, keep encouraging him and 
don't ever, ever, ever call him a "weenie" - he's already faced many 
things that no non-diabetic will face.  Support him, tell him he's a 
pain if he is, but don't ever run him down...  

Make sure he knows that there are a lot of us out here too that are 
cheering for him... and know that we're also cheering for you...  but 
please remember that what is simple for some people is easy for 
others.  I think that it would be a breeze to quit smoking - but then 
I'm not a smoker...   Each of us has our weaknesses, our fears and 
our soft spots.  Harsh language doesn't help someone work through 
those difficulties and in fact can make them more difficult to 

Randall Winchester

* The views expressed here are mine and do not necessarily *
* reflect the official position of my employer.            *
* There's no guarantee on anything said here...
* If I say I understand something completely the only thing
* we can both be assured of is that I must have completely
* misunderstood something.