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[IPk] I got the pump

Hi all -

I had my first clinic/pump appointment yesterday morning at the Mother of
Misery hospital here in Dublin (honest - it's the Mater Misercoridae, under
the care of the Sisters of Mercy).  Dr. Firth managed to call me obsessed
and my present insulin regime 'crazy' in the course of our discussion, but
he was actually quite polite and did a very good job playing devil's
advocate about my present regime and using a pump. However, he said he
wasn't going to try to convince me not to try a pump, and he has written to
my GP and will be writing a letter to the Eastern Health Board for funding.

Nicola, who is the head diabetes nurse, is very pleasant and enthusiastic.
She told me a few bits of information that surprised me and, frankly, I'm
glad I didn't know them before I went for my appointment because I wouldn't
have been nearly as relaxed.  Apparently, at present, there are fewer than
_ten_ pumpers in the Republic of Ireland.  That it's such a small number
was in itself a surprise, but I was even more surprised because I shared a
house with one of them a few years back, and knew of another one through
her. So, I was familiar with something like 20% of the Irish pumping
population and I didn't even know it!

The other thing I didn't know is that the Mater is only starting its pump
programme, and I will be their second experiment - that is, if they can get
a bed for the woman from Monaghan, who is doing it as an inpatient.  If
they don't have a bed for her by the end of February, they'll start me
first.  The entire staff is only just learning how all this works.  It's a
little bit worrying, really, because carb counting, frequent BG monitoring,
etc., is new to them all.  Nicola was shocked and amazed that I test
between 5 and ten times a day.  I feel very lucky that I was diagnosed in a
hopsital in the US where they taught carb counting from the beginning.  It
will make my life a lot easier when I start the pump - and it's made my
management much better so far, I think.

So, I'm a little bit dazed, really, and my main feeling is that I have a
lot of work ahead of me, and a lot of education to do.  the medical staff
are meant to be telling _me_ all this information, not the other way
around!  However, I still want to try the pump, and I'm sure when I start
getting my results from it I'll become very excited and enthusiastic.

All questions, comments, and suggestions are welcome.

Oh yes.  Ian, from email @ redacted, was visiting at the weekend and
he came with us to the hospital.  It made a big difference having a 'buddy'
with me, and I know I was more relaxed because of that as well.  Perhaps
there's call for a buddy system!


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