Recently, I had to go to the ER. (That’s a whole other story that involved Altitude Sickness. That was fun, stay tuned) When I got out, I jokingly made a comment to someone who obviously didn’t know me very well, how nice of an ER it was! (It really was! Go Yampa, CO!) After the confused look faded from her face, she asked me how many times I had been in the hospital. Well, I didn’t even count that visit as a “hospital” since, after all, I didn’t get admitted. I had only been treated and then left. However, I answered her question as honestly as I could:
“Uh, ya know…I really have no clue.”
Truth is, I have been in the hospital A LOT in my 28 years on this planet. Nine times out of ten, my reason for being there was diabetic related. Thinking back on all my hospital stays, ER visits, and scary ICU “get-me-outa-heres”, made me realize how differently I’d been treated in that rare occasion I wasn’t there for T1D.
With my pregnancy with Chewy, I was seen by my Endo at least every 2 weeks, and my OBGYN every 3-4. Needless to say, I had a lot of eyes on me. Thing, overall, went very smooth diabetes-wise because of that through the entire pregnancy. Buuuuut, when I was a little more than 7months pregnant – I had to have an emergency C-section due to preeclampsia. This, of course, resulted in a hospital stay. 3 days before my daughter was cut out of me and about 4 days for me after.
I realized even before I knew I was going to be having a C-section that I was very… defensive. I was nice enough to everyone (No, I mean it! Even my husband and parents said so! haha) But I was still… on edge. Ready to defend my actions. Why? Well, my best guess is I was used to being in hospitals for DKA.
I have never had a hospital stay when I was being treated for something that was T1D related, and had it be … fair. I’ve always felt that as soon as I arrived I was being judged.
“How come her sugars got so high?” “Is she not doing her insulin?” “What’d she do, go off her diet?”
It sucked, every. Single. Time. I felt like i was always to blame. I was always the one who was being interrogated, rather than simply questioned to figure out how to fix the problem.
Uhhh helloooooo?! Don’t they know I didn’t WANT to be there? Couldn’t they grasp that if I could help it, I would not have been under their scrutiny, but home relaxing with my pups?!
Cmon. It can’t be THAT hard to figure out… but for some reason I always, ALWAYS got the feeling like I was to blame. It was my fault. “Stupid diabetic”
So it was a whoooole new woooorld (please picture me singing on a magic carpet here) to me when the nurses and drs were treating me…. normally. For all my visits (except one) with my drs before giving birth, during my c-section stay, and recently my ER visit – I felt how (I’m assuming) most people feel when they go to get cared for:
I felt cared about.
It was awesome and sad at the same time honestly. Awesome because I could let my guard down. I could relax and truly focus on the issues at hand. But sad because – well, duh – why couldn’t every hospital stay be like this? How come it’s already predetermined that if a diabetic is in the ER, that we did something wrong? There have been countless times where I’ll eat the saaaaaaame thing for breakfast, bolus the saaaaaaaaame way and BAM – opposite ends of the spectrum kind of sugars result.
I guess my point is this – unless a diabetic reeeaallly likes that good ol’ sugar free jello the hospital serves and simply can’t find it anywhere else – why would we choose to be there? Maybe it’s time diabetics were treated like patients and not inmates.