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Re: [IP] Personal Stories

Dear Lisa:

I've been a diabetic since age 12, and started on the pump at age 34-35,
after waiting several YEARS to get my insurance to pay for it. It's been
a long time, but I am starting to feel more like a normal person again.

When I was first diagnosed, there were few kids my age with the same
problems, and there were no support groups like this one to help us
"talk things out". My Mom and I used to counsel some of my doctor's
other patients, as he said that we were the best-adjusted diabetic and
family he'd ever seen. I know how your son feels about being
"different", and the problems that come with trying to control BG's.

As a teenager, I had a friend, a Navy doctor, who tried to get me into
an early study for pumps. Unfortunately, I was at the end of a LONG
list. It would have saved me from many trips to the hospital for various
problems due to my poor control. I have tried every therapy available,
and even the DCCT intensive therapy was of little help. 

During the early 1990's, I started getting in real dire straits; I ended
up in the ER 3 times in 6 months. The doctors were not too optimistic
that I was going to make it. However, I surprised them all, and pulled
through.  It took me almost two years to really recover, but I was never
the same, as the problems has taken some toll on me.

I buckled down and tried even harder to look for ways to keep my
condition under control until I could get an insulin pump. It was the
only thing that I had not tried, and after 20-plus years, I was tired of
being miserable.

Then, in January of 1998, I was finally able to get on the MiniMed 507
insulin pump. After two days, I was already able to sleep through the
night and feel rested in the morning. After years of waking up night
after night, it felt so good to be able to rest.

The pump has given me a chance to live a pretty normal life. I can run
my computer business, do yard work as needed, eat out, travel, and
generally do the same things everyone else does. No more feeling run
down most days, no more bouts of deperession, etc., from the wild
fluctuations in BG's. I can skip meals if I'm busy on a project, or out
having a good time. I can plan my day around work and fun, NOT
injections and meals. I can sleep in, work extra hours, or whatever I
need or want to do without a lot of worrying over possible problems.

My family and friends all say that I look great, and seem to have a lot
more energy, and better spirits. I surprised everone at my youngest
brother's wedding in May 1995; when I ate wedding cake (My first piece
of party cake in about 20 years) and danced the whole night long. They
were so amazed, my brother asked the photographer and video people to
make sure they got me on film. He sent copies to all of the relatives
who could not attend, and they cannot beleive the diffrence.

You and your son can e-mail me privately if you'd like. Tell him from me
that a pump is NOTHING to be afraid of; he'll enjoy feeling better once
he's on it. It takes getting used to,but in the end, it's easier to live
with a pump that to try to live through the complications of NOT having
it. I know that from personal experience.

Best Wishes,

Amilcar Vazquez Jr., 934 Hardwick Avenue, Orlando, FL 32825-6639
mailto:email @ redacted (Off.) mailto:email @ redacted
http://www.sistemas.net (Off.) http://www.vazquez.net (Pers.)
ICQ:8907355 ICHAT:avazquez AOL AIM:AVazquez PAGOO:4078237733
Insulin-Pumpers website http://www.bizsystems.com/Diabetes/
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